MINNEAPOLIS (Feb. 4, 2009) – Lester Brown, founder and president of the Earth Policy Institute, and founder of the Worldwatch Institute, along with Terry and Mary Kohler, of Windway Capital Corp., will be the recipients of the 2009 Lindbergh Award in recognition of their dedication to the environment. “Mr. Brown and the Kohlers convey an outstanding spirit of individual initiative and incredible accomplishment,”?? said Lindbergh Foundation Chairman John King. “This makes them perfect recipients for our Lindbergh Award.”?? The Lindbergh Award is presented annually to individuals who have made significant contributions over many years toward improving our quality of life by balancing technological advancements and the preservation of our environment. A gala will be held at the EAA AirVenture Museum, in Oshkosh, Wisc., on Saturday, May 16, 2009. The ceremony includes a reception, silent auction, dinner and a program, including remarks from the award recipients.
Lester Brown, founder and president of the Earth Policy Institute, has been described by the Washington Post as “one of the world’s most influential thinkers.”?? He is an award-winning environmentalist and internationally recognized author of more than 50 books on global environmental issues. Before starting the Earth Policy Institute in 2001, Mr. Brown founded Worldwatch Institute and was its president for 26 years. “Lester Brown is an exceptional portrayal of the Lindbergh Foundation’s ideals,”?? said King. “He presents a realistic view of the world, yet remains optimistic as he suggests practical solutions to many of today’s most pressing environmental issues.”??
Top of mind for Mr. Brown these days is discovering alternative energy sources for the country and evaluating the economic impact of each. His Plan B series of books are aimed at this very important issue. In writing the first Plan B book, Lester Brown told Grist magazine that the goal for the book was to provide a look at what an environmentally sustainable economy looks like. “Throughout most of human history, we lived on the earth’s sustainable yield” “the interest from its natural endowment. But now we are consuming the endowment itself,”?? says Brown. “Plan A”?? represents the status quo. Mr. Brown’s comprehensive “Plan B 3.0”?? has four goals: 1) stabilize the climate; 2) stabilize population; 3) eradicate poverty; and 4) restore the earth’s damaged ecosystems.
“Among the new sources of energy “??? wind, solar cells, solar thermal, geothermal, small-scale hydro, biomass” ???wind is emerging as a major energy source,”?? Brown said in his 2006 book, Plan B 2.0: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble. “Wind energy is growing fast for six reasons,”?? Brown explains. “It is abundant, cheap, inexhaustible, widely distributed, clean, and climate-benign. No other energy source has this combination of attributes.”??
In his most recent book, Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization, which came out last year, Brown said, “The challenge for our generation is to build a new economy, one that is powered largely by renewable sources of energy, that has a highly diversified transport system, and that reuses and recycles everything. And to do it with unprecedented speed.”??
Terry and Mary Kohler
“Terry and Mary Kohler’s use of their aircraft to reintroduce swan and crane eggs in the United States is an excellent example of the Lindbergh Foundation’s concept of balancing technology and nature,”?? said King. “Their commitment to this work is just what the Foundation seeks to honor with our Lindbergh Award.”??
Terry Kohler is president and CEO of Windway Capital Corp., and Mary Kohler is vice president of the Windway Foundation. Windway Capital Corp., is the parent company of Vollrath, which manufactures commercial-grade pots and pans; and North Sails, which makes high-tech racing sails, including those used by America’s Cup winners.
It was 1989 when then-Governor Tommy Thompson asked Mr. Kohler to help with a project between the Wisconsin DNR and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. They needed to transport to trumpeter swan eggs collected from Alaska and bring them safely back to Wisconsin and the Milwaukee Zoo. Mr. Kohler jumped at the chance. That request launched a nearly decade-long commitment by Terry, Mary, and the flight crew of Windway Capital who made annual flights to Canada’s Wood Buffalo National Park to bring whooping crane eggs to the U.S., so the hatched birds could be returned to the wild.
In 1994, the Kohlers began supporting the Milwaukee County Zoo’s annual tracking of endangered Humboldt penguins in Chile. They also helped rescue piping plover eggs in the Dakotas when floods threatened the nests. But their conservation work is not limited to birds. They also helped transport a baby orangutan from Colorado to Wisconsin and have been involved in conservation projects related to trout streams and aerial surveys of ancient coral beds in Montana, and the Wisconsin ice age trail.
Mr. Kohler also made a round-the-world flight over Russia to deliver Siberian crane eggs to Western Siberia in 1997. The trip became the first-ever flight across Russia by a private jet. It took 14 days and 39.2 hours of flight time. Nearly 13,000 miles were traveled, mostly above the Arctic Circle.
In an article in the January 2008 issue of EAA’s Sport Aviation magazine, Mr. Kohler said, “Working with trumpeter swans, whooping cranes and Siberian cranes is an experience that has provided almost weekly excitement in our lives for nearly 20 years.”??
Lindbergh Award Event Held at EAA AirVenture Museum
“Oshkosh is all about innovation,”?? said Elissa Lines, EAA vice president of donor and business relations. “So we feel that Oshkosh is the perfect place for the Lindbergh Award celebration.”?? Lindbergh Foundation President Knox Bridges added, “We couldn’t agree more. The Lindbergh Foundation supports scientific and educational innovation with its research grant and award programs. What better place for us to honor our Awardees for their life-long dedication to environmental innovation, than EAA.”??
As an added attraction, EAA is offering vintage aircraft rides and discount museum admission to Lindbergh Foundation gala attendees. Flights in the Ford Tri-Motor, Swallow and Travel Air will be available that weekend only for Lindbergh Foundation gala guests.
About the Lindbergh Foundation
The Lindbergh Foundation is a public 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, based in Anoka, Minnesota, which supports great innovations that foster the environment for a planet in balance. The Lindbergh Foundation also values individual initiative and accomplishments. Its programs are devoted to supporting, honoring, and educating individuals, through three major programs: the annual honorary Lindbergh Award, presented to individuals for significant contributions toward balancing nature and technology in their work; the Lindbergh Grants program, which provides grants in amounts up to $10,580 (the cost of building the Spirit of St. Louis in 1927) for research or education projects that will make important contributions to the technology/environment balance; and other educational events and publications centered on the balance theme.