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Texas Woman Recognized for Innovative Environmental Leadership
Honoree Receives Audubon/Toyota TogetherGreen Fellowship
New York, NY, November 16, 2011 – An Austin woman is the recipient of a national conservation fellowship that will allow her to engage an ethnically-diverse community in conserving Blair Woods, a 10-acre wetland, savannah and wooded tract in the heart of Austin, Texas.
Nancy Manning is one of 40 individuals nationwide selected as a 2011 TogetherGreen Fellow. Supported by a conservation alliance between Audubon and Toyota, the TogetherGreen Fellowship offers specialized training in conservation planning and execution, the chance to work and share best practices with gifted conservation
professionals, and assistance with project outreach and evaluation. Each Fellow receives $10,000 towards a community-focused project to engage local residents in conserving land, water and energy, and contributing to greater environmental health.
For her TogetherGreen Fellowship, Manning is setting out to better connect the local Austin community to Blair Woods, a Travis Audubon sanctuary undergoing restoration through funding by TogetherGreen. As Executive Director of Travis Audubon Society, Manning believes that there is great potential for the local community to care about
this natural space, but that she needs to create messages that better resonate with them. Over the past three years, Manning’s efforts have helped to transform this sanctuary—a ten-acre, wooded wetland in the heart of highly urbanized Austin, Texas– from a neglected site into a thriving natural space. The next big step in this process is to create a
constituency of people who value this natural area, and who are willing to take ownership over its long-term protection.
“Nancy has the passion and the skills to inspire others, which is exactly the kind of person the environmental community needs to tackle the huge challenges and opportunities confronting us,” said Audubon President David Yarnold. “Our TogetherGreen Fellows represent a talented and diverse group; each a proven leader with a commitment to both the environment and his/her community.”
“Blair Woods has truly come back to life in the past few years. I am so honored to have received a TogetherGreen Fellowship to take this work to the next level,” said Manning. “If I can use my fellowship to better connect the local community to this natural area, we can ensure that it remains healthy and vibrant, long into the future”.
Manning earned her Juris Doctor from Southern Illinois University, and received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois. After serving as a lawyer for nearly 25 years, she became the Executive Director of Travis Audubon Society in 2007. Today, she serves as an Adjunct Professor at Kaplan University, teaching criminal law, while simultaneously running one of Austin’s most prominent conservation groups.
Fellowship recipients were chosen from a large pool of highly qualified individuals. All were required to have at least six years of experience in conservation, environmental education, policy, or related issues; a demonstrated passion for conservation and a proven track record of reaching previously underserved audiences. Applicants also need to
express a desire to learn and grow. An advisory committee composed of conservation professionals and experts in environmental education, communications, outreach, and conservation planning made selections.
A complete list of the 2011 TogetherGreen Fellows can be found here.
Audubon and Toyota launched the five-year TogetherGreen initiative in 2008 to build the promise of a greener, healthier future through innovation, leadership and volunteerism. For more information on TogetherGreen, please take a look at their website.
Toyota (NYSE: TM) established operations in the United States in 1957 and currently operates 10 manufacturing plants, including one under construction. Toyota directly employs nearly 30,000 people in the U.S. and its investment here is currently valued at more than $18 billion, including sales and manufacturing operations, research and development, financial services and design.
Toyota is committed to being a good corporate citizen in the communities where it does business and believes in supporting programs with long-term sustainable results. Toyota supports numerous organizations across the country, focusing on education, the environment and safety. Since 1991, Toyota has contributed over half a billion dollars to philanthropic programs in the U.S.
For more information on Toyota’s commitment to improving communities nationwide, visit their website.
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