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National Award for Saginaw Bay Watershed Initiative

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:	Monday, April 19, 1999
Contact:	Cindy Newman
		Elizabeth Cisar


The national environmental nonprofit Renew America and the President’s Council on Sustainable Development announced today that The Saginaw Bay Watershed Initiative Network (WIN) has been selected for a National Award for Sustainability in the category of Freshwater/Watersheds.  The prestigious awards are being given by Renew America and the President’s Council to 24 programs throughout the nation that demonstrate leadership and excellence in integrating environmental, economic and community sustainability.   Only two of these awards were granted to projects in Michigan.   (Editor’s Note:  A complete list of winners is attached.)  

*These awards celebrate the ways in which Americans are working together to protect public health and the environment and to demonstrate that a healthy environment and a growing economy really do go hand-in-hand,* lauded Carol Browner, Administrator of the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency and co-chair of the National Town Meeting for a Sustainable America.

Award Winners Like WIN Enhance Our Communities

*The winners were selected through a rigorous process from over 300 applicants who exemplify the ideals of cooperative, ‘can-do’ citizenship,* remarked Anna Slafer, Executive Director of Renew America.  *As Earth Day gives us an opportunity to focus on the importance of caring for our planet, Renew America and the President’s Council on Sustainable Development honor the people and programs that safeguard our environment and enhance our communities everyday.*

On Monday, May 3, WIN will be honored at an award ceremony that is a featured event of the landmark National Town Meeting for a Sustainable America, convening May 2 * 5 in Detroit, MI, and co-sponsored by the President’s Council on Sustainable Development and the Global Environment and Technology Foundation.

*The award winners are the unsung heroes changing the shape of their communities and our nation,* said Martin Spitzer, Executive Director of the President’s Council on Sustainable Development.  *It is fitting to celebrate their ingenuity and commitment at the National Town Meeting, which is dedicated to promoting how people can work together to create livable communities and a healthy environment.*

WIN Addresses Local Saginaw Bay Issues

*We are very proud to receive this national recognition for the Saginaw Bay,* said Charles Curtiss, resident of Bay City, Michigan; President of the Saginaw Basin Land Conservancy; and member of WIN’s Steering Committee.  *We believe WIN continues to be successful because we’re addressing local issues which local people think are important through local project funding.  We’re focusing on what’s important to all of us here in this part of the Mitten: land use, nature and recreation, water resources, and agriculture and pollution prevention.  The incredible cooperation between people from all walks of life is creating a sustainable community for all of us.*

Formed in 1996, WIN is the collaborative effort of communities, conservationists, farmers, foundations and businesses to establish a unique partnership to enhance the Saginaw Bay Watershed and create a more sustainable future for all who live, work or recreate here.  WIN has established an Internet web site to communicate with participants and the public at:  http://www.saginawbaywin.org.  Or anyone may call WIN toll-free at:  1(877) ASK-4WIN [1-(877)275-4946].

WIN Presentation a Part of National Town Meeting

Representatives from WIN will present a learning session at the National Town Meeting
For a Sustainable America on May 4, 2:15 p.m.,  at the COBO Convention Center in Detroit.  The session, titled *Dollars and Sense: Building Community Partnerships that Work*, will include information about projects throughout the Saginaw Bay Watershed which have been funded and implemented by WIN.

The award winners were selected by representatives of the National Awards Council for Environmental Sustainability (NACES) and the President’s Council on Sustainable Development.  NACES, coordinated by Renew America, comprises 60 national environmental, nonprofit, government, and business organizations, including the National Audubon Society.  The Nature Conservancy, the Sierra Club, The Humane Society of the United States, AT&T, US EPA, the National Geographic Society, and the Smithsonian Institution.

WIN will be listed and described along with this year’s finalists in Renew America’s Environmental Success Index, a comprehensive database record of more than 1,400 successful environmental programs throughout the United States.  It is available free on the World Wide Web (see below).

Renew America identifies, verifies, and promotes model programs that protect, restore, and enhance the environment.  By offering positive, constructive models, Renew America inspires communities, government agencies, and businesses to meet today’s environmental challenges.  For more information about Renew America, please call 
(202) 721-1545.  To see the Environmental Success Index on-line, visit www.crest.org/renew_america.

The President’s Council on Sustainable Development is an advisory committee established by President Bill Clinton to develop bold, new approaches to achieving our nation’s economic, environmental, and equity goals. Members of the Council are leaders from business; all levels of government; and community, environmental and Native American organizations.  For more information, call (202) 408-5296 or visit www.whitehouse.gov/PCSD.