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SLRA recognizes winners at annual meeting

The St. Louis River Alliance presents its 19th annual Environmental Stewardship Awards Tuesday.

Winners of its “Season of the St Louis River” Photo Contest also will be announced. The event takes place at the Grand Ave Chalet at Spirit Mountain beginning at 6:30 pm. The awards ceremony is open to the public. There is no charge, but an RSVP is appreciated, call 218-733-9520 or email These annual awards recognize the people, organizations, communities and institutions that have provided outstanding service to restore, protect and enhance the St. Louis River and its watershed. The following awards will be presented:

Sally Gibson Environmental Stewardship Awards: Julie O’Leary and Rick Gitar

O’Leary has been a leader in her professional work and volunteer efforts educating, organizing and advocating at the local, regional, state and national level to help protect the St. Louis River and Lake Superior.

Gitar has been actively involved both professionally and as a volunteer in the work of restoring and protecting the St Louis River since 2004. He has served on the SLRA board for nine years, serving as the Board chair in 2013 and leading the SLRA Habitat Work Group for nearly ten years.

Media Environmental Stewardship Award:

In recognition of Larry Weber’s dedication toward educating and engaging the public about the natural world through his weekly columns in the Duluth Budgeteer and radio talks on KUMD. Larry has also written several nature related books, and taught middle and high school science for 40 years.

The Willard Munger Sr. Environmental Stewardship Award goes to Fond du Lac Resource Management Division in recognition of the leadership and technical service contributions towards restoring and protecting the St. Louis River and Lake Superior. Numerous professional staff members from several programs within this division have made important contributions towards addressing the issues related to the St Louis River Area of Concerns. These efforts include helping to restore sturgeon and wild rice in the St Louis River.

Special Recognition for Lifetime Achievement Environmental Stewardship Award goes to Will and Sally Munger, both active in leading and engaging others.