The Ellen Pickering Environmental Excellence Award

Alexandria Earth Day’s Web site:  http://www.alexearthday.org/

The City of Alexandria Environmental Policy Commission and the Alexandria Sanitation Authority announce the second annual award program to select and formally recognize outstanding citizens who have demonstrated their commitment to protecting the natural environment and promoting environmental sustainability. In addition to Alexandria citizens, an Alexandria group, club, organization or corporate neighbor may also be nominated. The recipient(s) of the award will have a tree planted in their honor during Alexandria Earth Day 2010.

The Ellen Pickering Environmental Excellence Award is named in honor of Mrs. Pickering’s lifelong dedication to preservation and conservation in the City of Alexandria. Frances Ellen Pickering, a long-time City activist, first gained recognition for her lobbying efforts that, more than 30 years ago, helped to create the Mount Vernon Trail between Alexandria and Washington. An active preservationist and conservationist, she was deeply committed to preserving and enhancing the City’s waterfront. She urged the adoption of the City’s Open Space Plan, lobbied to preserve Founder’s Park and protect it from high-rise development, and implemented the planting of 1,000 citizen-donated cherry trees during her tenure as chair of the Alexandria Beautification Commission.

Mrs. Pickering was elected to City Council as an independent, serving for one term between 1976 and 1979. She also served on numerous City boards and commissions, including the Alexandria Beautification Commission, the Alexandria Sanitation Authority, the Ad Hoc Committee on Potomac Yard, the Potomac Greens Task Force, and the Open Space Steering Committee. She also chaired the Northern Virginia Conservation Council for many years. She won two Salute to Women Awards from the City’s Commission on Women; she was also an active member of the League of Women Voters and the Alexandria chapter of the American Association of University Women.

Timing: The awards will be presented at the Alexandria Earth Day festival on April 24th, 2010 at Ben Brenman Park. Nominations must be received by March 26th, 2010. Nominations should be addressed and mailed or delivered to the Alexandria Environmental Policy Commission (Alexandria City Hall, Office of Environmental Quality, 301 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22314).

Selection: Selection will be made by a special committee of the Environmental Policy Commission, the Alexandria Sanitation Authority, and members of Mrs. Pickering’s family.

Criteria: Citizen nominees for the Ellen Pickering Environmental Excellence Award must be residents of the City of Alexandria. Groups, clubs, organizations and corporations must operate within the City of Alexandria. The actions of the nominees must have a direct impact on the environment and natural resources within the City of Alexandria.

Applicable Subjects: Topics applicable to the award criteria include:

•Natural resource preservation;
•Energy conservation;
•Education outreach regarding environmental sustainability;
•Water conservation;
•Waste reduction and/or materials reuse/recycling;
•Promotion of clean air.
Additionally, the City of Alexandria adopted the Eco-City Charter in 2008 and Phase I of the Environmental Action Plan in 2009. Both documents define the guiding principles of environmental sustainability. See http://alexandriava.gov/tes/eco-city/default.aspx.

Submission Requirements: Submissions must include the following:

1.The nominee’s name, address, and telephone number(s), or the key individual to contact if a nominee is a group, club, agency, organization or corporate neighbor.
2.Name, address, and telephone number of the person nominating the candidate.
3.A brief description (not to exceed one page) of the nominee’s accomplishments and qualifications for such an award.

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