NOAA 2005-R435
Contact: Glenda Powell
NOAA News Releases 2005
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Howard Eugene Wright, a volunteer at the Old Woman Creek National Estuarine Research Reserve, has been recognized by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as an Environmental Hero for his long-standing commitment to promote research, education and stewardship of estuaries.

Recently retired from Old Woman Creek NERR, Wright began his career at Old Woman Creek in 1979 when he oversaw its designation as a National Estuarine Research Reserve and State Nature Preserve (1980). Of the 26 NERR sites in the United States, Old Woman Creek remains the only reserve in the Great Lakes. Wright served as Old Woman Creek NERR program administrator through 2004 during which time he prepared and implemented three NOAA approved management plans for the reserve.

Wright administered over four million dollars in federal funds for operations, construction, acquisition and special projects at Old Woman Creek NERR. Through his leadership, the program grew from a single operations center in an old house into a multi-million dollar visitor center and education and research facility.

Established in 1996, the Environmental Hero Award is presented to individuals and organizations that volunteer their time and energy to help NOAA carry out its mission.

“NOAA and the nation are fortunate to have such dedicated people volunteer so much of their time,” said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Jr., Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “They set a perfect example for others to follow in their communities. America can benefit from more environmental heroes like Howard.”

NOAA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources.

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