Press Release Apr 9, 2014

National Parks Conservation Association Honors Park Champions at Annual Salute to the Parks Gala

Country-Rock Songstress Doreen Taylor to debut new song in support of NPCA; bring awareness to parks

Washington, D.C. – The nation’s leading park advocacy organization, the nonprofit National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), will tonight honor nationally recognized educator Dr. Milton Chen, Ph.D. with the Robin W. Winks Award for touting the value of national parks as outdoor classrooms; and debut a song written by award-winning songstress Doreen Taylor to benefit NPCA’s work to protect and enhance America’s national parks.

The Robin W. Winks Award for Enhancing Public Understanding of National Parks is given annually to an individual or organization that has effectively communicated the values of the National Park System to the American public. Dr. Milton Chen is receiving the Winks Award for his work to encourage the use of national parks as outdoor classrooms, and weaving science, history and other lessons into park activities that challenge students to learn and solve problems. Dr. Chen’s interest in finding ways to connect children to the outdoors spans a nearly 25-year career in education.

In an effort to raise awareness about the national parks in advance of their 2016 centennial, Doreen Taylor will provide the entertainment for the evening by premiering her inspiring new song “Colors of the USA,” which will be available to download April 11 and can be previewed now at www.colorsoftheusa.org. Fifty percent of all proceeds generated from the song will go directly to NPCA in support of our work to protect and enhance America’s national parks and to inspire new audiences.

“I look forward to honoring our national park champions, supporters, and allies tonight that are critical to the work that we do at NPCA each day, especially as we prepare for the fast-approaching centennial of the National Park Service in 2016,” said Clark Bunting, president and CEO of the National Parks Conservation Association. “NPCA will continue to evolve and examine ways to meet people where they are, as we look for new ways to engage more Americans in protecting and enhancing our national parks.”

The Salute to the Parks Gala offers one of the largest and most influential gatherings involving the conservation and environmental communities. This annual event celebrates America’s national parks, calls attention to their needs, and recognizes individuals and organizations whose dedication to the national parks and impact on the system deserve attention.

This year’s Salute to the Parks Gala theme recognizes the important role of the media in establishing our national parks and shaping the National Park System and will be hosted at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Since 1919, NPCA has been the leading voice of the American people in protecting and enhancing our National Park System. NPCA, its more than 800,000 members and supporters, and many partners work together to protect the park system and preserve our nation’s natural, historical, and cultural heritage for generations to come.

###

About National Parks Conservation Association
Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its more than one million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s natural, historical, and cultural heritage for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.