AND THE WINNERS ARE … WSE AND … WSE
Western Sustainability Exchange is thrilled to be the recipient of two prestigious national awards for its groundbreaking work. First, WSE will be honored with a SHIFT Sustainability Award Wednesday, October 8th, at the SHIFT Summit in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Then on November 14th, the Quivira Coalition will recognize WSE’s work by presenting the organization with its distinguished 2014 Clarence Burch Award in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
“This is a big year for WSE,” says Lill Erickson, WSE Executive Director. “It’s our 20th Anniversary, we achieved our Million Milestones of one million acres conserved through sustainable practices and $1 million in yearly sales for farmers and ranchers who take part in our programs, and now we have been chosen for two prominent awards.
What a great way to begin a new decade.”
The SHIFT Summit recognizes the “intersection of conservation with Nature, culture and adventure,” says conference organizer Christian Beckwith. The five-day festival also celebrates the heroes of community sustainability. WSE was chosen as one of 50 community heroes, from a pool of over 600 organizations, for being among the most effective and innovative in North America.
The Quivira Coalition, a collaborative of ranchers and conservationists based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, selected WSE to receive the 2014 Clarence Burch Award, which is given each year to an “outstanding land management steward,” according to the Quivira Coalition website. The award recognizes individuals and organizations that lead by example in promoting and accomplishing outstanding stewardship of the land.
Both the SHIFT and Quivira Coalition awards endorse the leadership role WSE plays in promoting sustainable agricultural practices by farmers and ranchers throughout the Northern Rockies and rewarding outstanding stewardship with connections to new and lucrative markets. WSE’s initiatives include a certification program that verifies outstanding stewardship, connecting certified farmers and ranchers to local and national markets through Local Foods Commerce Days, operating WSE’s Livingston Farmers Market, a Farm to Restaurant Connection Program, and the Steer to Steak Initiative. WSE also mentors children to become sustainable entrepreneurs through their Young Entrepreneurial Stewardship Program. More information is available at WSE’s website westernsustainabilityexchange.org.