Jerry Fletcher receives a congratulatory hug from Stacey Larsen while being awarded this year’s Sterardship Award for Environmental Excellence at the Fall Fair at Haig Brown House this past weekend. Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror

Annual awards celebrate stewards of the environment

City of Campbell river recognizes those who go above and beyond in protecting nature

For the 17th year in a row, the City of Campbell River made River’s Day weekend an opportunity to recognize those within our community who work tirelessly to protect the natural environment we all love by celebrating them with their annual Stewardship Awards.

Stacey Larsen, community advisor with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, presided over the ceremony, which was held during the annual Fall Festival at Haig-Brown House Sunday.

“I’m lucky to be able to work with various community groups, First Nations and non-profit organizations from Oyster River to Holberg to Phillips Arm, Philips River, Cortes to Zeballos,” Larsen says. “There are so many amazing programs that are happening to enhance salmon and improve salmon habitat and I’m happy to be a part of that.”

The first award, given to Tom Porsborg, was Air Quality and Alternative Transportation.

“Tom is an indispensable steward in the Beaver Lodge Forest Lands,” Larsen says. “He is extremely active in trail maintenance, clearing brush and debris and creating proper drainage for the trails. He as also made an additional commitment to community safety and accessibility to alternative transportation by becoming an on-call faller for effectively removing downed trees from the trails.”

He also puts on workshops and training opportunities to develop another generation of trail stewards, helping ensure a future generation of stewards will pick up where he leaves off in protecting and managing the region’s trail systems.

The Pesticide Free and Urban Agriculture award went to Sherrill Stone, one of the founders and managers of the Laughing Willow Community Garden.

“Despite some attempts to reduce her contributions slightly and take a well-deserved rest, she keeps getting pulled back,” Larsen says. “She is a passionate and knowledgeable gardener who shares that knowledge freely with the community.”

The award for “Water and Energy Conservation” was then given to Timberline science teacher Dan Klinka, who runs Timberline’s Stream to Sea program.

“When a student can go to school and have the opportunity to be part of a project and work with people like Greenways and existing streamkeepers, professionals in the field, volunteers and everyday people that are out there doing good things,” Larsen says, “those students are going to be the next generation of our stewards, so the role Dan is playing is critical, like so many of our educators.”

Rhonda Teramura was then named the recipient of the Waste Reduction award for her efforts in reducing waste at the annual Snowden Trail Challenge event.

When Teramura became disheartened at the piles of trash left behind at various public events, Larsen says, she made it her mission to make the 2017 Snowden Trail Challenge as waste-free as possible. Through her efforts – and collaboration with organizations like Comox Strathcona Waste Management – she created more than a 70 per cent diversion by volume over previous events.

In the Habitat Protection and Creation category, the 2018 award was given to Bob Tonkin, for his “long-history of Simms Creek stewardship. The selection committee couldn’t believe he didn’t already have a recognition plaque,” Larsen says, calling him “one of those constant forces working in the background.”

The Youth Special Recognition Award was given to Anna Buck, who took on responsibility of watering the young trees planted by Greenways Land Trust, “which is critical,” Larsen says, “because if that doesn’t happen, we often don’t get survival of trees and shrubs we plant and without that, it doesn’t make much sense to do it in the first place.”

The final award of the day was given to Jerry Fletcher for Environmental Excellence, whose contributions to environmental stewardship in our region are simply too extensive to list.

“This is a great honour,” Fletcher says. “It’s been a privilege to work with the many other dedicated volunteers who have a common goal to respect and protect our environment. It takes time and effort to help Campbell River remain the paradise we all know and love.”

The city also awarded its final Tom Easton Memorial Bursary.

“I can’t believe its the fifth and final year of the bursary,” Larsen says. “Tom was a very special person who cared deeply for the environment and put a lot of effort into our community.”

This year’s bursary was awarded to Timberline graduate Wesley Greentree, who started the Riverkids program for at-risk kids in Campbell River and contributes to many other volunteer initiatives within the community.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Busy day for Campbell River fire crews

Three incidents in rapid succession keep crews on their toes

New electric buses are coming to school districts. (Submitted photo)
New electric school buses will drive North Island forward

Travel on electric school buses is smoother, quieter, and healthier than traditional diesel buses

Destroyed window at Ministry of Social Development offices in Campbell River. Photo supplied by Campbell River RCMP
Police investigating arson in downtown Campbell River

Fire set at BC Employment and Assistance Office

May 3-9 was Mental Health Week, and the Campbell River RCMP is encouraging people, especially men, to seek emotional help if it’s needed. Black Press file photo
Campbell River RCMP encouraging men to seek emotional help if needed

‘Taking care of our Mental Health is not simply about accessing counselling,’ says Const. Maury Tyre

Campbell River’s waste collection schedule will be changing after Victoria Day. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror.
Campbell River Garbage pickup schedule changing after May Long Weekend

Pickup day will change after every statutory holiday

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

The dash cam footage, taken May 7 at 8:18 a.m. belonged to the driver of a southbound vehicle that recently travelled out of the tunnel. (Reddit/Screen grab)
VIDEO: Dash cam captures dramatic rollover crash on Highway 99

Only one person sustained injuries from the collision, says B.C. Ambulance Services

Chevy stranded on a ledge above a rocky canyon at Mimi Falls near Logan Lake, April 28, 2021. (Photo credit: Margot Wikjord)
Police officer and fire chief team up in risky rescue of stranded dog near Logan Lake

Chevy, a rescue dog, needed rescuing again after getting stuck on a ledge above rocky canyon

Police were on the scene of a fatal shooting in Abbotsford. (Black Press Media files)
B.C. government to give more than $8 million for programs to curb gang violence

221 not-for-profit projects led by local governments and school districts among others will receive a one-time grant

Gord Judson steers his log truck down a forest service road, using two-way radio and call signals to mark his position for oncoming traffic. (B.C. Forest Safety Council)
Planning some B.C. wilderness fishing? Don’t catch a log truck

Remote recreation areas bracing for heavy pandemic pressure

Former University of British Columbia student Stephanie Hale, 22. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff Bassett
Human Rights Tribunal to hear complaint against UBC Okanagan for ‘mishandling’ sexual assault report

Stephanie Hale did not return to campus after the student she alleges attacked her was cleared of wrongdoing

Jennifer Coffman, owner of Truffle Pigs in Field, B.C., poses beside her business sign on Thursday, May 6, 2021, in this handout photo. Her restaurant and lodge have been hit hard by a closure of a section of the Trans-Canada Highway and by the British Columbia government discouraging Alberta residents from visiting during the pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Jennifer Coffman, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
‘Why we survive’: B.C. boundary towns struggle without Albertans during pandemic

Jennifer Coffman’s restaurant is located in the tiny community of Field, which relies on tourism

NEW CUTLINE Payphone use is declining dramatically. (Black Press Files)

This payphone sits just east of TD Bank in Parksville, on Harrison Avenue. (Emily Vance photo)
Last call approaches for Vancouver Island payphones?

Some payphones don’t get used for days as mobile phones diminishing need

Garden centre manager Jack Olszewski and Chris Beaudoin say business has grown by 50 per cent at the Sooke Home Hardware Store. (Rick Stiebel - Sooke News Mirror)
Flower power: COVID restrictions fuel bloom boom on Vancouver Island’

More people seeking flowers to add colour, says Sooke landscaper

Most Read