The Department of Environmental Studies will present two Environmental Excellence awards on Friday, May 16, at the department’s Celebration of Accomplishments ceremony.
•The 2014 Community Member Environmental Excellence Award will go to Betsey Harris, one of the three original founders of the Monadnock Conservancy and a longtime resident of Dublin, New Hampshire.
•The 2014 Alumni Environmental Excellence Award will go to Dan Flerlage, MS ’79, a science teacher, youth mentor, and community organizer for more than thirty years at the nationally renowned Lehman Alternative Community School in Ithaca, New York.
These awards are presented each year to an alumnus and to an individual in the community who have contributed significantly to sustainability and environmental protection through their work or personal actions. Ty Minton’s bells will be presented to Harris and Flerlage at the May 16 ceremony.
About Dan Flerlage
To further the school’s goals of integrating sustainability, Dan developed the Youth Farm Project, an eight-acre organic farm run almost entirely by local high-school-aged youth, which provides local, organic produce for school lunches. He helped switch the school district from Styrofoam lunch containers to cardboard, built composting systems in the district, and, with his students, wrote a grant for design of a photovoltaic system for Ithaca High School.
Dan authored “Media Construction of Global Warming: A Digital Media Literacy Curriculum,” produced by Project LookSharp. He played a critical role in the start-up of the Ithaca Science Center, of which he is a current board member, and has been an inspirational cooperating teacher to many science teacher certification students at AUNE.
Dan earned an MS in Environmental Studies, with K-12 Biology Certification, from AUNE in 1979.
About Betsey Harris
Harris and her husband, John, were the first to donate a conservation easement to the Monadnock Conservancy, and donated additional land in 2007 that helped establish a 731-acre greenbelt near the base of Mount Monadnock. She was a leader and catalyst who helped the Conservancy conserve more than 12,000 acres in its first decade and served on its board of directors for twenty years. She also helped establish the Community Conservation Partnership,
Harris served on the Dublin Conservation Commission, Dublin Planning Board, and Dublin Open Space Committee. She was a board member of Southwest Region Planning Commission and was named New Hampshire Citizen Planner of the year in 1995. She was given the Sarah Thorne Conservation Award by the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests in 2009 and the Founders Award by the Monadnock Conservancy in 2011.