Kansas Grazing Lands Coalition, McPherson, wins KWF Conservation Organization Award
The Kansas Wildlife Federation proudly announces winners of the 2012 Conservation Achievement Program Awards. KWF honored 13 recipients on Feb. 23 at a reception and banquet in their honor in Emporia.
For 49 years, the Federation has recognized Kansans who have devoted exceptional efforts for wildlife conservation in the state. Kansans, who wished to recognize the awardees for their contributions, supplied the nominations.
The CAP awards are given in several categories including youth, land, water, wildlife, forest, education, farming and ranching. For 2012, 12 awards were given, along with the president’s special award for meritorious service to the KWF.
These are the most prestigious conservation-related awards given in Kansas and are patterned after similar awards in most other states through respective state affiliates of the National Wildlife Federation.
The 2012 Conservation Organization Award was presented to the Kansas Grazing Lands Coalition of McPherson. The KGLC was organized shortly after the formation of the National Grazing Lands Coalition Initiative in 1991. Since its inception KGLC has accomplished many great things to better Kansas grazing lands through collaborative education such as range schools, coffee shop meetings, youth education contests, public education meetings, and videos covering management topics.
KGLC organized as a not-for-profit in 2006. KGLC holds numerous meetings, special events, tours, implements two adult range schools each summer, and interacts with regional grazing groups such as the Tallgrass Legacy Alliance, Comanche Pool Prairie Resource Foundation, Smoky Hills Graziers Association, Kansas Graziers Association, and the Clark-Comanche-Meade Counties Grazing Group to support local efforts to solve priority grassland issues and concerns, primarily through educational efforts often keying on grassland wildlife species.
The Coalition helped birth the Kansas Prescribed Fire Council in 2008, and has supported it with staff assistance and finances. The Coalition recently worked with KS PFC and the Comanche Pool to secure a $250,000 2012 Conservation Partners Grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to place two regional fire coordinators in the Lesser Prairie-chicken Initiative area of western Kansas to help start and support new local prescribed burning associations.
KGLC just updated its long-term strategy guiding its growth through 2015. It includes key elements of developing and helping to implement a comprehensive statewide grasslands invasive species plan, reducing the impacts of grassland fragmentation, continuing expansion and support for regional grazing groups where interest exists, continuing to support the use of prescribed fire as a grasslands management tool (through the KS PFC), and maintaining and expanding its cutting edge web site as a primary informational resource for ranchers, agency staffs, educators, and others.
The Kansas Wildlife Federation is proud to present the 2012 Conservation Organization of the Year award to the Kansas Grazing Lands Coalition.