For Immediate Release: Sept. 20, 2011
Contacts: DEP Press Office 850.245.2112, DACS
Press Office 850.488.3022 or
Press Office 850.488.8843
GOVERNOR AND CABINET RECOGNIZE DEP, DACS, FWC RESOURCE MANAGERS WITH HIGHEST ENVIRONMENTAL AWARD
~Land managers honored for their dedication to
protecting Florida’s environment~
Spoonbills fly over the water at Myakka River State Park.
TALLAHASSEE - Governor
Rick Scott and the Florida Cabinet today signed four resolutions sponsored by Agriculture
Commissioner Adam Putman honoring recipients of the 2010 Florida Department of
Environmental Protection (DEP) Jim Stevenson Resource Manager of the Year
Award, one of the state’s highest environmental honors.
four employees have demonstrated how we can continue to improve the way we do
business in Florida by being more resourceful, efficient stewards of our land
and resources,” said Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam. “Each of these
individuals took the initiative–not because they were asked, but because it
was the right thing to do. We can all learn by their example and work together
to create a better and brighter future for all those who call Florida home.”
award recipients are Lee Edmiston, director of DEP’s Apalachicola National
Estuarine Research Reserve; Jason DePue, lead biologist for District Three of DEP’s
Florida Park Service; Don Francis, area manager and biologist of the Joe Budd
Wildlife Management Area with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation
Commission (FWC); and Winnie Schreiber, manager of the Withlacoochee Forestry
Center with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ (DACS)
Florida Forest Service. They represent the state’s leaders in
natural resource management.
year, DEP uses this award to recognize state employees who demonstrate outstanding
commitment to land management and protecting our state’s natural resources,”
said DEP Secretary Herschel T. Vinyard Jr. “This year, the selection committee
chose four recipients who are truly deserving of this honor, and I commend them
on their contributions to our state.”
recipients were recognized for the following accomplishments:
For more than 18 years, Lee Edmiston worked tirelessly to improve the
scientific understanding of the Apalachicola River and Bay system as the
research coordinator at the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve. Because
of his extensive knowledge of coastal ecosystems, Lee was appointed as the state’s
Natural Resources Damage Assessment Trustee for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Lee has distinguished himself through tireless work and self sacrifice to
protect Florida’s coastal resources.
Jason DePue is the lead biologist for District Three of the Florida Park
Service. Jason’s work ethic, experience and resourcefulness give him the
ability to translate his resource management knowledge into action. Jason has
actively assisted in achieving the resource management objectives of District
Three parks and has been a great asset to prescribed fire, exotic plant, listed
species and habitat restoration projects. Jason enthusiastically shares his
knowledge of resource management and willingly answers questions from park
staff and visitors. His dedication to the Florida Park Service ensures that
Florida and its visitors will have invaluable natural and recreational benefits
that will endure far into the future.
Don Francis has served as area manager and biologist on the Joe Budd Wildlife
Management Area, in Gadsden County, for more than 30 years. He is known as a
tireless leader and champion for the stewardship of slope forests. His measures
to catalog and protect rare natural communities have included discovering and
recording the presence of a new state and national champion Pyramid Magnolia.
Francis is a tireless steward of the land,” said Nick Wiley, executive director
of FWC. “His commitment as a manager and biologist on the Joe Budd Wildlife Management Area for more than 30 years has touched the lives of thousands of
Floridians, of all ages, who enjoy the outdoors."
Winnie Schreiber is the manager of the Withlacoochee Forestry Center, which is
headquartered near Brooksville, and includes the Withlacoochee and Seminole
State Forests. Her leadership has led to numerous accomplishments on these
forests including significant contributions to forestry, recreation, endangered
species and fire management. Winnie’s cooperative spirit toward land management
has established lasting relationships with local, state and federal partners,
as well as the general public, to ensure that forest management decisions always
meet the state’s public service responsibilities, and that our land stewardship
ethic is advanced for future generations of Floridians.