|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
|Date:||January 24, 2007|
|Contact:||Shannon Andrea, NPCA, 202-454-3371|
Biscayne Bay Activist Receives National Parks Award
Conservationist Celebrated for Work to Protect Biscayne National Park, Virginia Key
Hollywood, FL - At the 22nd Annual Everglades Coalition Conference, Lloyd Miller, a Florida conservationist whose advocacy inspired the creation of Biscayne National Monument, later redesignated Biscayne National Park, received the prestigious Marjory Stoneman Douglas Award from the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), for his untiring efforts on behalf of Biscayne and the other national parks in South Florida.
"Lloyd's lifelong commitment to Florida's natural treasures represents the commitment we need for our national parks and the ideal that this award was intended to honor," said NPCA Regional Director Shannon Estenoz. "From working to create Biscayne National Monument back when no one cared about wetlands, to his more recent work in protecting Virginia Key, he is an example of what citizens can accomplish on behalf of this country's magnificent natural resources."
Established by Congress in 1968 as "a rare combination of terrestrial, marine and amphibious life in a tropical setting of great natural beauty," Biscayne National Monument was created as the predecessor to Biscayne National Park, in large part due to Lloyd Miller and his followers. In 1961, 13 area landowners voted unanimously to create the City of Islandia. The next year, plans for Seadade, a major industrial seaport, were announced, and called for the dredging of 8,000 acres of bay bottom, a 40-foot deep channel through the Bays clear, shallow waters to create the jetport.
But, due to the efforts of Mr. Miller, president of the local Izaak Walton League, the area was instead designated a national park unlike any other. Covered by water, Biscayne National Park protects not only the islands, but also the bay and the reef, providing a haven for wildlife and a respite for visitors.
"Lloyd is a wonderful role model and an inspiration to all who love and care about our national parks and the heritage they protect," said Estenoz.
NPCA's annual Marjory Stoneman Douglas Award was established in 1986 to honor individuals who often must go to great lengths to advocate and fight for the protection of the National Park System. Named for Marjory Stoneman Douglas, a life-long advocate for Everglades National Park, the award recognizes the outstanding efforts of an individual or group that result in the protection of a site or proposed site in the National Park System. For more information about NPCA, visit: www.npca.org.