Environmentalist of the Year Celebration

Watch the 2021 Environmentalist of the Year Awards & Celebration Event

Over 100 people joined us on Zoom and participated in our live stream from the Neahtawanta Center, where several NMEAC board members and award recipients joined us for a celebration.

See this year's recipients listed here.

See this year's nominees listed below.

Everyone is a winner in our book. Thank you for your support and participation.


Hover over the video timeline to navigate through the video, or watch on YouTube for easy navigation.

00:00 Welcome from Ann Rogers, NMEAC Chair
00:56 Sally Van Vleck and "Founding Mothers," Martha Phillips, and Charlene Goral
04:22 Keynote: Kate Madigan, Director of Michigan Climate Action Network
24:49 Music from Victor McNanemy - "Lament of the Lakes"
34:32 Ann Rogers sets up the Awards
35:50 Jeremy Reisig introduces Nominees and Recipients
37:57 Environmentalist of the Year: Student - Katherine DePauw, Great Lakes Water Studies Institute
39:52 Environmentalist of the Year: Educator - Cory Hanson, Greenspire School
42:43 Environmentalist of the Year: Grass Roots Group - Jannan Cornstalk, Water is Life Festival
46:24 Environmentalist of the Year: Journalism & Communications - Beth Wallace, National Wildlife Federation
48:49 Environmentalist of the Year: Business - Bob Sutherland, Cherry Republic
50:24 Environmentalist of the Year: Public Service Office - Kama Ross, Grand Traverse & Leelanau Conservation District
50:38 Environmentalist of the Year: Professional - Kelly Thayer, FLOW For The Love Of Water
55:16 Environmentalist of the Year: Volunteer - Madeline Baroli, Leelanau, Benzie, and Grand Traverse Conservation Districts
58:01 Environmentalist of the Year: Volunteer - Aubrey Ann Parker, Benzie Water Festival
59:55 Environmentalist of the Year: General - Rick Buckhalter
1:02:49 Environmentalist of the Year: Agriculture - Barry Krull, Krull's Composting (accepted by Christina Speaks)
1:07:55 John Nelson presents the John Nelson Watershed Steward Award - Tom Nelson, Leelanau Conservancy
1:10:11 Ann Rogers presents the special Litigator of the Year - Holly T. Bird
1:13:07 Susan Wheadon presents the Golden Beaver Award - Cathie Cline
1:15:51 John Nelson presents the Clarence Kroupa Lifetime Achievement Award - Dori Turner, Watervale Inn (accepted by Glen Chown)
1:21:36 Ann Rogers and David Petrove present the Golden Bulldozer Award - five of the Grand Traverse County Commissioners
1:24:08 Ann Rogers introduces Terri Reisig to give the inaugural Greg Reisig Prize for Environmental Journalism - Dave Dempsey, FLOW For Love Of Water
1:30:11 Farewell and a reading from Ann Rogers
1:32:00 Farewell from Jeremy Reisig as he performs "Love."

View the 2020-2021 EOY Recipients

Download your copy of the Program.

2020/2021 EOY Nominees

Environmentalist of the Year - Student

Rapid City Elementary Students
Youth Water Council
Katerine DePauw - Great Lakes Water Studies Institue

Environmentalist of the Year - Educator

James Dake - Grass River Natural Area
Corey Hansen - The Greenspire School
Joe Kreider - SEEDS
Boone Scharp - Kingsley High School
Amanda Scott - Youth Work Conservation Corps
Emily Umbarger - Interlochen Center for the Arts
Kimmee Wenkel - COGNiTiON Science & Discovery Center

Environmentalist of the Year - Grass Roots Group

David Christian - Antrim County Chain of Lakes Lake Level Committee
Jannan Cornstalk - Water is Life Festival
Rob Karner - Glen Lake Association
Emily Votruba - MIFiberShed Team at Grow Benzie

Environmentalist of the Year - Journalism and Communications

Linda Dewey - Glen Arbor Sun
Jeff Gibbs - Film: Planet of the Humans
Kaye LaFond - Interlochen Public Radio
Sheri McWhirter - Traverse City Record-Eagle
Steve Tuttle - Northern Express
Beth Wallace - Great Lakes Partnership Manager at National Wildlife Federation

Environmentalist of the Year - Business

Sarah Anderson - Iron Fish Distillery
Matt Myers - M-22 Stores
Bob Sutherland - Cherry Republic
Dori Turner - Watervale Inn
Jennifer Viren - Taproot Cider House

Environmentalist of the Year - Public Service or Public Office

Tim Arends and John Taylor - TCLP
Mark Breederland  -Michigan Sea Grant
Matt Flechter - Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy
Craig Olsen - Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
Mark Randolph - Kalkaska Conservation District
Kama Ross - Grand Traverse and Leelanau Conservation Districts
Nicole Schafer - Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Environmentalist of the Year - Professional

Tom Nelson - Leelanau Conservancy
Carolyn Thayer - Designs In Bloom
Kelly Thayer - FLOW - For the Love of Water

Environmentalist of the Year - Volunteer

Madeline Baroli - Past student Intern for Forestry Assistance Program, Leelanau, Benzie and Grand Traverse Conservation Districts
Fred Norman - Boardman River Clean Sweep
Ingemar Johansson - Honor Area Restoration Project
Suz McLaughlin - Benzie County community
Sharon Oriel - Leelanau Conservancy
Aubrey Ann - Parker Benzie Water Festival
Seth Phillips - Manistee Lake Association
Nicola Philpott - Citizens’ Climate Lobby, Westwood Elementary PTO President
Charlie Weaver - NMEAC & Sierra Club
Sarah Archer - Iris Waste Diversion Specialists

Environmentalist of the Year - General

Rick Buckhalter
Alex Campbell - Bay Area Recycling for Charities
Becky Alexander, Marilee Wood, and Lisa Snyder - Clarence and Esther Kroupa Family
Emily Magner - Michigan League of Conservation Voters

Environmentalist of the Year - Agriculture

John Dindia and Bailey Samp - Lakeview Hill Farm
Michelle Ferrarese - Birch Point Farm
Barry Krull - Krull's Composting
Jake Milarch - Archangel Ancient Tree Archive
Ryan Romeyn - Providence Organic Farm
Carissa Savage - Lost Lake Farm
Chris Skellenger - Buckets of Rain

Thanks to our Underwriters

Advanced Roofing
Gwenne and Len Allgaier
brotha James
Carpet Galleria
CBS Solar
C J Cracchiolo
Jack and Lois Driscoll
Nancy Duke
Tom and Diane Emling
Bill Gittlen
Groundwork Center
Herrington-Fitch Family Foundation
Kima Kraimer
Leslie Lee
Light of Day Organics
Angela Macke
David Milarch
Lynne Moon
Neahtawanta Inn
John Nelson
Rebecca May Norris
Allan O’Shea
Oil & Water Don’t Mix
Oryana Community Co-op
Grant and Paulette Parsons
Denis Pierce
Royce Ragland
Jeremy Reisig
Terri Reisig
Mike & Libby Robold
Ann Rogers
Barb Stamiris
June Thaden
Dori Turner
Sally Van Vleck
Watervale Inn


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