Nancy Cutbirth Small Distinguished Service Award

The Nancy Cutbirth Small Distinguished Service Award was established to honor the memory of one of the most important founders of the Kalamazoo Area Chapter of Wild Ones, Native Plants, Natural Landscapes.

The award is presented to recognize individuals who have made extraordinary contributions, to our Chapter, to environmental education, and to the restoration of native plants and natural landscapes in southwest Michigan.

  • The award was established in early 2011 by an action of the Executive Committee.
  • Any member in good standing of KAWO may nominate an individual by providing a written statement of reasons why the nominee should receive the award, submitted to the Executive Committee.
  • The recipient will receive a lifetime membership in the Kalamazoo Area chapter of Wild Ones.

2012: Richard Brewer

The first recipient is Dr. Richard Brewer, who received the award at the February KAWO meeting in honor of his many services and kindnesses to the chapter and to all of us, and for his outstanding, unfailing support of environmental education and restoration throughout the area.

2014: Ilse Gebhard

A charter member of KAWO, for extraordinary achievements in support of the chapter’s and the Audubon Society of Kalamazoo’s activities in establishing educational native-plant gardens; in her tireless working for preservation of milkweeds, monarch butterflies, and their wonderful migration, especially chairing our Monarch Butterfly Committee; in working, together with her husband Russ Schipper, with Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy, Wild Ones, and others to establish prairie habitat for threatened grassland birds; and in presenting, year after year, dozens of educational programs on native plants, butterflies and moths, and native ecosystems.

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