Press Release via Wildlife Foundation of Florida

Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam was honored Saturday as the winner of the 2014 BlueGreen Award for Conservation Leadership in Florida. He was recognized before a crowd of nearly 400 during the 3rd Annual BlueGreen Event at “Alligator Ron” Bergeron’s Green Glades Cowboy Ranch in Weston.

“Adam has been instrumental in helping develop and support a strong connection between fish and wildlife conservation and traditional agricultural practices,” said Rodney Barreto, chairman of the Wildlife Foundation of Florida, the nonprofit that honored Putnam. “Without this type of support and coordination, effective conservation in Florida is much tougher.”

Putnam has championed good stewardship of Florida’s water and land resources for nearly two decades and was honored to be selected for the prestigious award. As he accepted his award, Putnam reminded the crowd that Florida is a special place and how very lucky we are to live here.

“It’s an honor to receive this award and I’m proud to work alongside organizations like the Wildlife Foundation of Florida to conserve the economic, cultural and recreational value of our wildlife resources so that they will available and healthy for Florida’s next generation,” Putnam said.

The annual BlueGreen fundraising event brought in more than $800,000 that will be used to help renovate the Everglades Youth Conservation Camp. This historic, wildlife-oriented camp is located near Palm Beach on the Corbett Wildlife Management Area, and has served youths in South Florida since 1960.

The Wildlife Foundation of Florida is planning to expand the Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network (FYCCN) across the state with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).
Research has shown that today’s kids spend less time in the outdoors than any previous generation but programs like ‘Creating the Next Generation that Cares’ aim to change that.

“This year’s event was a huge success thanks to the generosity of so many people. I am pleased and thankful to all our sponsors, conservation organizations, the outdoors industry and all the attendees” said Barreto. “It’s clear to me that there are a lot of people who really care about our kids and connecting them to our great outdoors. I sincerely thank them for being so generous with their time and money so that future generations will be able to appreciate and enjoy their outdoor heritage.”

While this year’s event was outstanding, Barreto emphasized that there’s still more work to do.

“The tremendous success of this year’s BlueGreen Event is a great way to wrap up 2014,” Barreto said. “Now it’s time to look ahead and set our sights on 2015. Our youth and the future of our state’s wildlife depend on it.”

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