Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Outstanding Journalist in Conservation John Wathen

For Immediate Release
Outstanding Journalist in Conservation
John Wathen (Friends of Hurricane Creek – AL)

For Immediate Release – March 28, 2011

Benjamin Colvin: 828-258-2667 ben.colvin@wildsouth.org
Tracy Davids: 828-258-2667 tracy@wildsouth.org

Local Group Announces 2011 Conservation Awards Nominees

ASHEVILLE, NC –Wild South’s Roosevelt-Ashe Society announced today the winners for its annual Roosevelt-Ashe Society Conservation Awards. The awards honor outstanding conservation work in the South and recognize heroes for their contributions to protect the South’s wild places.
“These awards exist for people who believe they can move a mountain,” said Randy Talley, co- owner of The Green Sage Coffeehouse and Cafe. “The award winners are champions for all of
us to believe we can change this world, we can change our destructive behaviors, we can make a difference.”

The Roosevelt-Ashe Conservation Award Winners are:

Outstanding Business in Conservation
Earth Fare (Roger Derrough, Founder)
  Outstanding Small Business in Conservation
Higher Ground Roasters (Alex Varner, co-owner- AL)
Outstanding Volunteer-Advocate in Conservation
Jay Leutze (Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy-NC, TN)
Outstanding Philanthropist in Conservation
Philip Blumenthal (Blumenthal Foundation- NC)
Outstanding Journalist in Conservation
John Wathen (Friends of Hurricane Creek – AL)
Outstanding Educator in Conservation
Hilary Hargrove (Riverdale High School, TN Env. Educ. Assoc. –TN)
Outstanding Youth in Conservation
Cole Rasenberger (Davidson Elementary School –NC)
Outstanding Conservationist
Brad Wyche (Upstate Forever –SC)

The Award winners were selected by an independent committee made up of highly respected conservationists from across the South. Their task was difficult and unenviable due to the this year’s amazing pool of nominees. On Friday night, Wild South’s Roosevelt-Ashe Society held its annual Green Tie Gala, a “Green Oscars” event where the award winners were announced and honored.

“I’ve seen my mentors and heroes receive these awards in years past,” said Jay Leutze, Outstanding Volunteer-Advocate in Conservation award winner with the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy, “and I am honored to receive recognition alongside them tonight.”  

“It was fun to see our guests walk down “The Green Carpet” at this year’s Gala and have such a great time,” said Tracy Davids, Wild South’s Executive Director. “It took a village to make the Gala the smash it was and I thank all of the Asheville area businesses that contributed to it.”

The 2011 Green Tie Gala Event and Reception were sponsored by: The Green Sage Coffeehouse and Café, Earth Fare, Hickory Nut Gap Farm, Banfi Wines and Empire Distributors, Inc., HandMade in America, Gallery Minerva, Pisgah Brewing Co., Blackbird Frame & Art, Luella’s Bar-B-Que, Greenlife Grocery, Short Street Cakes, French Broad Chocolate Lounge, Bluewater Seafood and Wine Market, Dynamite Roasting Co., Aaron Wilson (French Broad Brewing Co.), Classic Event Rental, Firestorm Cafe and Books,  REI, Mast General Store and other friends of forests.

Wild South is a non-profit organization whose mission is to inspire people to enjoy, value and protect the wild character and natural legacy of the South.


  1. I can do nothing alone. SouthWings, WATERKEEPER Alliance, Save Our Gulf...and on and on. The real story is the people I talk about. The real survivors in national energy sacrifice zones across America.

  2. yay, john! congrats - your job was not an easy one. much appreciation on behalf of many, many gulf residents.

  3. Humble and truthful as always! Thank you for your part in this conservatory. Your updates are very compelling evidence in this crisis!


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