ST. PAUL, Minn. – April 30, 2013 – Ducks Unlimited recognized longtime supporter and Living Lakes Initiative advocate John Lindquist with its 2012 Minnesota Volunteer
Conservationist of the Year award. The award was presented April 3 at DU's Capitol Chapter fundraising event in St. Paul by Gildo Tori, DU director of public policy for the Great Lakes/Atlantic Region, and Russ Terry, DU director of conservation programs.
"Recognition for John and all his conservation efforts over the years was long overdue and much deserved," stated Jon Schneider, DU Manager of Minnesota conservation programs
. "John is a conservationist in the truest sense of the word; he really understands the habitat needs of wildlife and appreciates the wetlands conservation mission of Ducks Unlimited."
Lindquist, a resident on Lake Christina in Douglas County near Evansville, has served as president of the Lake Christina-Ina-Anka Lake Association since its inception in 1999. The local organization strongly supported DU and Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' efforts to enhance Lake Christina, and Lindquist's leadership was critical to garnering financial support from individuals, other conservation groups and the state Outdoor Heritage Fund. Lindquist helped raise more than $250,000 for Lake Christina over the years, and along with his wife, Pat, also donated a conservation easement to DU to permanently protect their property on Lake Christina in 2004, the first of 19 conservation easements currently held by DU in Minnesota.
The Lindquists have supported DU's efforts to improve and protect shallow lakes throughout Minnesota, as well as DU's highest-priority conservation work protecting the prairies of North and South Dakota. They have demonstrated their appreciation for both landscapes many times over the years as they've encouraged others to support DU's Living Lakes and Preserve Our Prairies conservation initiatives. In 2005, the Lindquists chaired a committee hosting the Living Lakes Initiative Kickoff Event in Alexandria that jumpstarted support for Living Lakes and expansion of DU's conservation efforts in Minnesota. More recently, Lindquist reinvigorated the Ashby DU committee.
Lindquist is quick to explain the importance of upland grass and wetlands on the prairie landscape to sustaining wildlife populations, and laments the plight of the prairies as habitat is lost after decades of prairie conservation programs. He is an aggressive advocate for strong conservation measures in the federal farm bill, including robust funding for the Conservation Reserve Program and Wetlands Reserve Program. Lindquist owns land in Minnesota and South Dakota enrolled in both programs.
"John's passion for conservation and our hunting heritage is infectious, as is his smile and strong handshake," said Adam DeHaan, DU director of development. "Conservation needs more leaders with concern and commitment to supporting our wildlife habitat work like John Lindquist."
DU's Living Lakes Initiative
strives to help state and federal conservation agencies improve shallow lakes and large wetlands throughout Minnesota and Iowa for ducks and other wetland wildlife. The cooperative work among DU, the DNR and other partners will help fulfill the shallow-lake goals in Minnesota's "Duck Recovery Plan" and wetland habitat objectives in the North American Waterfowl Management Plan
. DU's Preserve Our Prairies Initiative strives to protect the remaining unbroken native habitat on the prairie landscape.
Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world's largest non-profit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 13 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across the continent. Guided by science and dedicated to program efficiency, DU works toward the vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever. For more information on our work, visit www.ducks.org. Connect with us on our Facebook page at facebook.com/DucksUnlimited, follow our tweets at twitter.com/DucksUnlimited and watch DU videos at youtube.com/DucksUnlimitedInc.
Jon Schneider (Conservation)
Kristin Schrader (Media)