The Nature Conservancy in Mississippi wins Conservationist of the Year Award

March 21, 2017

The Nature Conservancy’s Mississippi Chapter was recently named Conservationist of the Year at the Mississippi Wildlife Federation’s (MWF) 57th Mississippi Conservation Achievement Awards Luncheon. The awards program recognizes and honors those whose achievements in natural resource conservation deserve statewide recognition. MWF’s Conservation Achievement Awards are among the most prestigious for conservation efforts. The awards are presented annually on behalf of MWF’s members and supporters and its statewide network of affiliated organizations.

From the Delta to the Gulf Coast, TNC Mississippi has played a key role in protecting and restoring over 150,000 acres, helping establish 6 National Wildlife Refuges, 4 State Wildlife Management Areas, and conserving the floodplain of the historic Pascagoula River. In 2016, the Mississippi Chapter celebrated their 40-year anniversary of conservation work along the Pascagoula River with a 2,100-acre acquisition and transfer of forest land along the Leaf River, a tributary of the Pascagoula River. TNC Mississippi also completed one of the biggest wetland restoration projects in the Mississippi Delta by installing a large water control structure at Mathews Brake National Wildlife Refuge. This effort restored over 3,500 acres of critical forested wetland that will continue to benefit wildlife, Mississippi residents, and the surrounding community.
Over the past year in the Delta, TNC Mississippi has enrolled nearly 2,000 acres in Mississippi’s first Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, an extension of the popular conservation USDA program referred to as CRP. The program offers incentives for private landowners to voluntarily implement conservation practices that restore bottomland hardwood wetland forests, increase wildlife habitat, and improve water quality. To conclude, the Mississippi Chapter utilized a $2.6 million grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund to create strategies and restoration designs for the abatement of threats to priority coastal streams and aid in the restoration of associated habitat.

“We are deeply honored by this award and feel this achievement highlights our commitment to on-the-ground conservation for our state. We look forward to continuing this work with our conservation partners and supporters across Mississippi,” stated Conservancy Associate State Director, Alex Littlejohn.

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The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 72 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

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