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Barbara Duncan receives a Founders Earth Leadership Award at the May 16th 20th Anniversary Celebration

Barbara Duncan receives a Founders Earth Leadership Award at the May 16th 20th Anniversary Celebration

Last week the Northwest Earth Institute celebrated its 20th Anniversary with a celebration in Portland, Oregon with over 220 people in attendance, including past and present board members, staff, community partners and discussion course organizers from throughout the region as well as the country.

We were honored to present the Founders Earth Leadership Award to Vermont’s Barbara Duncan and Oregon’s Betty Shelley. Barbara has been working with the Northwest Earth Institute community since the late 1990s, having created the Vermont Earth Institute and Catamount Earth Institute (partner organizations to NWEI). Through the NWEI discussion courses, she helped create a network of sustainability groups throughout the state of Vermont. By 2012 she had led efforts in starting at least 600 NWEI courses and engaging some 6000 people in Vermont and New Hampshire!

Betty Shelley and NWEI Executive Director Mike Mercer at the NWEI 20th Anniversary Celebration

Betty Shelley and NWEI Executive Director Mike Mercer at the NWEI 20th Anniversary Celebration

Betty Shelley has been actively volunteering for NWEI during the span of NWEI’s 20 years. As a community volunteer, she teaches waste reduction courses for citizens in the Portland area, and has been highlighted for her and her husband’s efforts to generate only one can of trash per year. Betty has volunteered on nearly every NWEI discussion course development team and several major revisions, as well as has volunteered to support nearly every NWEI North American Gathering and Volunteers Retreat – both locally and around the country. She also served on NWEI’s Community Building Committee for many years.

NWEI Executive Director Mike Mercer notes, “Some people do a great job of creating an example in their personal choices for others to emulate. Others set a very high standard in their public contributions to the sustainability movement. Those that are in the top 1 percent in both realms are leaders who deserve to be recognized for contributions that truly move the dial…Betty Shelly is such a person.”

NWEI Founders Earth Leadership Award Nominees and Recipients at the 20th Anniversary Event on May 16th, 2013

NWEI Founders Earth Leadership Award Nominees and Recipients at the 20th Anniversary Event on May 16th, 2013

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