Washington, DC (March 18, 2019) – National Park Trust is pleased to announce that Senator Richard Burr (NC) will receive the 19th Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award. The award will be presented to Senator Burr on Wednesday, June 12th at a reception at the Newseum in Washington, DC.
Senator Burr will be recognized for his outstanding efforts to support and advocate for the protection of our national parks, public lands and waters in his role as a member of the Senate Finance Committee and the Subcommittee on Energy, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure. He also chairs the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and serves on the Senate Committee of Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, and the Senate Aging Committee.
Senator Burr has been a leader in seeking permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund – a vision he shared with the award’s namesake, Congressman Bruce Vento. His sponsorship of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area Reauthorization Act demonstrates his continued commitment to protecting some of America’s most valuable ecological and historical resources.
“It’s an honor to be recognized by National Park Trust, and I want to thank them for their support,” said Senator Burr. “I strongly believe it’s our responsibility to preserve America’s natural landscapes and parks, so our children and grandchildren can enjoy them as much as we have. North Carolina has over 19 million visitors to its National Park Service units each year, and organizations like National Park Trust work diligently with their federal partners to help make those lands accessible. I will continue fighting for common-sense conservation efforts as long as I serve in the Senate.”
“We are delighted to be able to honor Senator Richard Burr for his service in Washington, DC and at home in North Carolina to support bi-partisan legislation and programs that will not only preserve America’s national parks and public lands today but also ensure that they will be treasured forever,” stated the Park Trust Board Chair Bill Brownell.
The Park Trust established the Vento Award in 2001 to honor the memory and legacy of Bruce F. Vento, a twelve-term Congressman from Minnesota, dedicated environmentalist and a champion of legislation for America’s parks. The award honors a public servant for his or her commitment to the environment, and their service, skill, and innovation in support of our public lands. Past recipients include Senator Martin Heinrich (NM), Senator Lamar Alexander (TN), Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN), Senator Rob Portman (OH), Senator Ron Wyden (OR), Congressman Mike Simpson (ID), Senator Mark Udall (CO), Senator Susan Collins (ME), Senator Jeff Bingaman (NM), Senator John McCain (AZ), Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (CA), Congressman George Miller (CA), and Senator Harry Reid (NV).
ABOUT NATIONAL PARK TRUST
National Park Trust is a non-profit dedicated to preserving parks today and creating park stewards for tomorrow. The Park Trust is the only land trust with a comprehensive mission of protecting national parks through land acquisition and creating a pipeline of future park stewards by getting kids to parks. Since 1983, the Park Trust has completed 70 land projects in 31 states, 1 US Territory, and Washington, DC. This school year, the Park Trust will provide an estimated 25,000 under-served kids with park trips through their nationally recognized Buddy Bison Programs and Kids to Parks Day National School Contest, both of which support Title I schools. Find out more atwww.parktrust.org.
All proceeds from the Vento Award event benefit the Park Trust’s mission and programs.
National Park Trust Honors Sen. Martin Heinrich (NM) with 2018 Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Washington, DC (June 13, 2018) – At an evening reception at the Newseum, the National Park Trust (NPT) awarded Sen. Martin Heinrich (NM) with the 18th Bruce F. Vento Public Service Award. The award was presented by NPT board chair Bill Brownell.
A member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and the Subcommittee on National Parks, Senator Heinrich was recognized for his outstanding efforts to support and advocate for the protection of our national parks and public lands and waters. He also serves on the Senate Committee on Armed Services, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee.
“Our national parks not only celebrate some of the most extraordinary natural places in our country, they are also part of the fabric of our democracy and fuel our thriving outdoor recreation economy,” said Senator Heinrich. “I am honored to receive this award from the National Park Trust and appreciate the work they do every day to protect our public lands for future generations to enjoy.”
Senator Heinrich was recognized for his numerous accomplishments including his leadership in creating two treasured National Monuments in New Mexico — the Rio Grande del Norte and the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monuments. He also has helped to create the 45,000 acre Columbine-Hondo Wilderness area, and worked to protect the natural and cultural resources in the Valles Caldera National Preserve while ensuring that new management will increase access for hunting and fishing.
He was instrumental in opening up the Sabinoso Wilderness to the public, which was the only legally inaccessible wilderness area in the country, and he worked to have legislation signed into law to establish the Manhattan Project National Historical Park after more than a decade of support from the local community. He has consistently advocated for permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund. In May 2018, the Senator introduced legislation to designate White Sands National Monument as a National Park.
Recognizingthe importance of encouraging kids to experience the great outdoors, in 2017,through bipartisan efforts, Senator Heinrich introduced the Every Kid Outdoors Act to provide all fourth graders nationwide free entrance to federally managed land, waters, and historic sites, including national parks. And once again he co-sponsored the 2018 National Kids to Parks Day Senate resolution.
“We are delighted to be able to honor Senator Martin Heinrich for his service in Washington, D.C. and at home in New Mexico to support bi-partisan legislation and programs that will not only preserve America’s national parks and public lands today, but also ensure that they will be here for the enjoyment of our country’s families tomorrow,” stated NPT Board Chair Bill Brownell.
ABOUT THE VENTO AWARD
NPT established the Vento Award in 2000 to honor the memory and legacy of Bruce F. Vento, a twelve-term Congressman from Minnesota, dedicated environmentalist and a champion of legislation for America’s parks. The award honors a public servant for his or her commitment to the environment, and his service, skill and innovation in support of our public lands. Past recipients include Senator Lamar Alexander (TN), Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN), Senator Rob Portman (OH), Senator Ron Wyden (OR), Congressman Mike Simpson (ID), Senator Mark Udall (CO), Senator Susan Collins (ME), Senator Jeff Bingaman (NM), Senator John McCain (AZ), Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (CA), Congressman George Miller (CA), and Senator Harry Reid (NV).
All proceeds from the event benefit NPT’s park preservation and youth programs.
ABOUT NATIONAL PARK TRUST
National Park Trust’s mission is preserving parks today; creating park stewards for tomorrow. In the 35 years since NPT was established, the non-profit organization has completed more than 60 land acquisition, restoration, and mitigation projects in 30 states, 1 U.S. Territory and Washington, D.C. including 48 National Park Service projects. In 2009, NPT launched its nationally recognized Buddy Bison Programs which currently supports more than 200 Title I schools across the country. Since 2011, NPT has organized Kids to Parks Day, an annual national celebration of America’s parks hosted on the third Saturday in May. For more details about NPT can be found atwww.parktrust.org.
August 25th, the National Park Service (NPS) celebrates its 101st birthday (also known as Founders Day) and you are invited! Friday is a fee-free day so anyone can visit a national park site and skip the admission charge. With more than 400 sites across the country, there may be one near you. Click here to search NPS sites by state and go celebrate in a park!
Did you know that on August 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the National Park Service Organic Act into law, creating the National Park Service? The purpose of the newly formed agency was, and still is, “to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and wildlife therein, and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.”
As an official NPS partner, National Park Trust’s mission supports our national parks by preserving these unique historic places and iconic landscapes in perpetuity. We acquire high-priority, privately held land located within or adjacent to the boundaries of our national parks and donate them to NPS for permanent protection. We also cultivate future park stewards and outdoor enthusiasts by engaging youth, especially those who are under-served, with our nation’s numerous parks and public lands.
Speaking of public lands, mark your calendars! The next NPS fee-free day is September 30th in celebration of National Public Lands Day (NPLD). You can support our parks by participating in a service project at many federal public lands and some state parks too. More information on NPLD is available here from our friends at National Environmental Education Foundation(NEEF).
#ThrowBackThursday: This Thursday is the anniversary of Joshua Tree National Park becoming an NPS site. On August 10, 1936, Joshua Tree National Monument was established by President Franklin D. Roosevelt thanks in large part to Minerva Hoyt and others who persuaded the state and federal governments to protect the area. Joshua Tree was elevated to a National Park in 1994 by the Desert Protection Act.
Did you know? In 2001 NPT purchased an 80-acre in-holding in the park which contained a critical segment of the Rockhouse and Thermal Canyon Trail network. The property is also an excellent habitat for the chuckwalla, a large, shy lizard. NPT donated the parcel to the National Park Service (NPS) ensuring its protection in perpetuity.
The property is located in a wild, rugged, and remote corner of the park affording visitors wonderful opportunities for solitude and a sense of discovery.
“As the population of the Coachella Valley continues to grow and expand toward the park, the value of NPT’s donation to Joshua Tree and the American public will only grow over time. The NPT donation will protect public access to this beautiful section of the park,” said then park Superintendent Ernie Quintana.
Joshua Tree National Park, located near Palm Springs, CA, became a national monument in 1936 and then a biosphere reserve in 1984. In 1994 it was established as a national park to protect and preserve a representative area of the Colorado and Mojave deserts and their natural and cultural resources for the benefit of this and future generations.
Click here for more information on our park preservation projects or contact Phil Selleck (301) 279-7275 ext. 14.
Thanks to generous support from The Carls Foundation, NPT will purchase an important historic property to benefit Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore (MI).
The Munising Range Lights and Keeper’s House complex, in service since 1908, is owned by the National Park Service (NPS) and still operated by the U.S. Coast Guard as an aid to navigation. The lights are arranged so that when a ship captain lines up one above the other, they will navigate safe passage along a channel into or out of the Munising Harbor.
Behind the Keeper’s House is a small piece of private property with a non-historic house. Purchasing the property and removing the non-historic house is a priority for the park because it would improve the historic site. The project puts NPT one step closer to its pledge to acquire and donate 100 high-priority properties to NPS, in commemoration of the NPS Centennial.