Collins, King Applaud Director of Wells Reserve at Laudholm for Winning Prestigious NOAA Conservation Award

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King applauded Paul Dest, the Director of the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve, for being one of only two people across the country to be awarded the 2016 Dr. Nancy Foster Habitat Conservation Award by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The Senators wrote a letter supporting Mr. Dest’s nomination for the award. ‎ 

“We are proud and excited that Paul Dest has been chosen by NOAA for this significant conservation award,” said Senators Collins and King in a joint statement. “He and the entire team at the Wells Reserve are doing fantastic work to help study and conserve coastal ecosystems across Maine, and we are thrilled that Paul is being recognized for his dedication and leadership.”

The Dr. Nancy Foster Habitat Conservation Award is given every two years to individuals who have demonstrated exceptional achievement in habitat conservation in the coastal and marine environment. This year’s other award winner is Lynda Mapes, an environmental reporter with the Seattle Times. The pair will be honored in December at the National Summit on Coastal and Estuarine Restoration in New Orleans. 

The Wells Reserve at Laudholm is located in Wells, Maine. As a National Estuarine Research Reserve, the Wells Reserve works to build knowledge about coasts and estuaries, promote environmental learning, and involve communities in conservation – all with the goal of protecting and restoring coastal ecosystems throughout the Gulf of Maine.