Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy to recognize leaders in conservation excellence
706 S. Euclid Street
Bay City, MI 48708
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 11, 2020
Contact: Ted Lind, Director of Community Conservation
The 8 th Annual Ospreys: Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy to recognize
leaders in conservation excellence!
The Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy (SBLC) invites the public to attend the 8th Annual
Osprey Awards for Conservation Excellence! The Osprey Awards is the SBLC’s annual
fundraiser and is designed to recognize key people, organizations, or businesses in the
community who have taken exemplary steps for conservation. For seven years running, the
event has sold out and has had a warm reception from the public. The event will be held at
Curtiss Hall on the campus of Saginaw Valley State University on the evening of Thursday,
February 20th. Doors will open at 6:00pm with the program to begin at 6:30pm.
Guests will enjoy music, dinner, a raffle contest, and a special film highlighting work completed
by the SBLC in 2019. A brief message from Mr. Dennis Dobbs of Consumers Energy and Ms.
Janell O’Keefe, Michigan Program Manager for the Center for Community Progress, will
highlight the idea of going above and beyond in our community to make it a better place. The
SBLC will also recognize a variety of groups and individuals who have played an important role
in the 2019 projects, and who uphold the SBLC’s own mission: “ Take action at the intersection
of people and nature, elevate landscapes for the benefit of all, provide leadership in
conservation. ” This year’s winners and speakers will specifically highlight the elevating
landscapes aspect of our mission. Awardees for this year include The City of Bay City's Parks
and Sanitation Department under the direction of Tim Botzau, Saginaw Valley State University's
Center for Community Engagement under the direction of Riley Hupfer, and the Shark Family of
The Award Recipients: The City of Bay City’s Parks and Sanitation Department under the
direction of Tim Botzau
Over the past year, we have spent a good deal of time looking at the recycling, waste
management, and yard waste programs around the region, and we are always impressed with
the vigor and "extra mile" approach shown by the City of Bay City. We are specifically honoring
the department due to the City's efforts for Earth Day, Christmas Light recycling, annual
recycling events, and community cleanups. The City of Bay City continues to be an active
partner in conservation in our region, and we look to others to follow that example. As a result of
these efforts, we are happy to honor them.
The Award Recipients: The SVSU Center for Community Engagement under the direction
of Riley Hupfer
This past season we saw a growing partnership with SVSU and welcomed more SVSU students
to volunteer with us than ever before. We hired one SVSU GIS Intern and had another SVSU
student work with us all summer on our seasonal stewardship crew. We were fortunate to
partner with Riley Hupfer's team for the Freshman Service Orientation and hosted two of the
Alternative Breaks groups for service and education opportunities. Additionally, numerous
students volunteered with us on their own accord on various community cleanup events. We
hope that this past season was just the start of a growing partnership, and we felt that the
Center for Community Engagement was vital in helping provide and promote valuable
conservation, education, and service opportunities for SVSU students.
The Award Recipients: The Shark Family
We are very excited to offer an award to the Shark Family for their volunteerism and leadership
in helping the Pinconning Nature Playground become a reality. It was wonderful meeting your
children and seeing them play at the new playground for the first time. The Shark family
generously provided the beautiful oak, maple, and ash logs that we incorporated into the
project, along with in-kind support of equipment and tools to help prep the site. Our board and
staff were inspired by the time and effort your whole family took in working with us on that
project, and we're excited to have you as a friend to the SBLC.
Volunteer opportunities with the SBLC will be fully posted in the spring, but some are available
already by visiting our website or following on social media.
Supporters of the Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy
The Osprey Awards are supported by the philanthropy of the Morley Family Foundation, the
presenting sponsor of the event. Further sponsorship support is being provided by ITC
Holdings, Inc.; the Michigan Sugar Company; Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe; Consumers
Energy; Saginaw Valley State University, Frankenmuth Bavarian Inn; Chippewa Nature Center;
and Covenant HealthCare. Additional support and raffle gifts have been provided by Chippewa
Nature Center, Little Forks Outfitters, Dow, Star of the West, ITC, Kathy Booth, Ieuter Insurance,
Great Lakes Shark Sock Company, Timothy’s Fine Tobacco, Sandhill Coffee, the Saginaw
Children’s Zoo, Stardust Family Fun Center, and the Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy Board
The Osprey Awards has been a successful community outreach and fundraising event for the
SBLC for six years and has attracted a growing audience. Attractive raffle prizes include a tent,
framed photography, tickets to various events, and other exciting outdoor-themed items. The
SBLC hopes to raise more than $20,000 for its conservation work. For more information about
the event, or to purchase tickets, please visit http://www.sblc-mi.org/2020-osprey-awards.html .
Tickets are $50 each. Tables of 8 can be purchased at a discounted rate of $350. Patron
Sponsorships are also available to individuals for $150 which includes two tickets and special
recognition in the event program.
About the Conservancy
The Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy helps maintain the quality of life in the Saginaw Bay
Watershed through the preservation of important wetlands, waterways, and land of all types.
The Conservancy is a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization working in the Saginaw Basin
and a recognized 1% for the Planet charitable partner. To date, the Conservancy has
permanently preserved more than 6,000 acres in the watershed. The Saginaw Bay Watershed
is the largest watershed in the state of Michigan filtering 15% of Michigan’s inland waters. It
contributes cleaner water to the Huron Bay, the Great Lakes, and is the largest contiguous
freshwater coastal wetlands system in the United States. Featuring more than 175 inland lakes
and nearly 7,000 square miles of rivers and streams, this unique watershed is home to a variety
of waterfowl, birds, snakes, turtles, amphibians, and more than 138 endangered or threatened
Anyone with questions should contact the Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy at (989) 891-9986.
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