Conservation Conference 2017
November 8-9  | Baltimore Marriott Waterfront

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Join the conversation on the challenges and opportunities facing corporate conservation, and the emerging trends and best practices that will define its future.

New sessions and workshops added. Student scholarships available. Click here to apply.

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The Conservation Conference, Nov. 8-9 at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, is the leading conference of corporate and conservation professionals who come together for a 2-day experience of learning, networking and celebrating corporate conservation achievements. At the Conservation Conference, we’re focused on discussions that are important for corporate conservation, employee engagement and community relations. Gain valuable information and strategies to face the issues and challenges of corporate biodiversity programs, and learn techniques and best practices for successful wildlife and habitat management.

Who attends?

Join leaders in corporate social responsibility, environmental health and safety, government agencies and NGOs – all working to create and maintain healthy ecosystems.

2017 Wildlife Habitat Council Awards

Winners will be presented with awards during the Conference. Click on the Awards tab above to view the 2016 winners and nominees.

Visit the 2016 Conference site

Learning series specific to your needs. Whether you are a manager new to corporate conservation or a seasoned sustainability executive, we’ve created a series of sessions designed with your priorities in mind.

Corporate Series
Designed for corporate executives and conservation leaders with sustainability, biodiversity and budget goals in mind, this series of sessions will focus on corporate challenges and issues that affect a company’s reporting, conservation efforts, and employee and community relations.

Technical Series
Looking to take your program to the next level with additional conservation actions and alignments? Establishing, maintaining and reviewing credibility of your programs not only promotes biodiversity efforts, but will also yield a greater ROI. This series of sessions offers real-world solutions to enhancing conservation efforts.

Starter Series
If you are new to conservation, or just starting a new conservation project, consider our Starter Series – designed to educate and instruct attendees on basic corporate conservation goals, strategies and outcomes. You’ll walk away with tangible actions you can take back to your company for implementation.

Session Descriptions

Are You Missing Out? Using Land Trusts to Create New Environmental Experiences
Presenters: Laura Napoli, Environmental Science Associate, ExxonMobil  |  Lori Scott, NatureServe  |  David Hartwell, Board Member, Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust, and Board Member, National Audubon Society  |  Kamara Sams, Environmental Community Relations, The Boeing Company

Have you taken advantage of available land trusts to develop or strengthen your conservation program? In this session, explore the value and business case around land conservation agreements adapted to the corporate context and become familiar with “Find a Land Trust,” a tool developed by NatureServe, Land Trust Alliance, and ExxonMobil. Learn how referendums are passed to provide funds to clean up past pollution, purchase land and restore land, and how those funds can then be used to buy out large corporate land holdings. Examine how Boeing created a vision of open space for their certified habitat through environmental partnerships with other corporations, NGOs and the North American Land Trust, preserving an important wildlife corridor and historic area. Technical Series

Boost Your Pollinator Habitat: The Latest and Most Effective Approaches
Presenters: Johanna Sievewright, Environmental Project Manager, American Transmission Company (ATC)  |  Carolyn Mahan, Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies, Penn State University  |  Burleson Smith, Regulatory Affairs Manager, BASF Corporation

Discover how companies are meeting the challenges of pollinator conservation and get an update on the latest research for the most effective management approaches to increase pollinator diversity on working lands. Learn how a utility company addresses pollinator decline by identifying priority areas for pollinator conservation and developing a tool to inform future restoration opportunities and hear how BASF’s Living Acres Farm combines scientific research, communication and stewardship efforts to help other farmers bolster pollinator habitat, specifically for the monarch butterfly. Technical Series

Building Wetlands in Your Forest or Meadow
Presenter: Dr. JJ Apodaca, Lead Scientist and Founder, Tangled Bank Conservation

Ephemeral wetlands, such a vernal pools or seasonal ponds, are extremely important breeding habitat for amphibian species. Find out more about these transient landscape features and learn how to create one in your own forest or meadow from one of the country’s foremost experts on amphibians, reptiles and their habitats. Technical Series

Changing the Nature Experience: Virtual Reality and Gaming Technology for Teaching and Learning
Presenters: Scott Tjaden, Environmental Scientist, Pepco Holdings, an Exelon Company  |  Chris Holmes, US Business Development and Interpretive Services, Discovery Agents

Instead of separating technology from nature, integrate technology into your conservation programs to engage people even more! Learn how visitors can remotely experience environmental projects through the use of virtual reality (VR) and experience a placed-based educational mobile game that is designed to teach kids about conservation and safety in their public lands, delivering unique interpretive content in a fun and interactive way. Technical Series

Conservation Alignments: Thinking Beyond Your Fence-Line
Presenters: Amy Derosier, Wildlife Action Plan Coordinator, Michigan Department of Natural Resources  |  Josiane Bonneau, Sr. Director, Conservation Strategy & Planning, Wildlife Habitat Council

Learn about the various types of conservation alignments, how to identify which may fit with your programs, and how to apply them to your conservation efforts. Through a combination of presentations, self-assessments and interactive exercises, you will explore State Wildlife Action Plans, watershed plans, and other strategies that can address specific conservation needs, improve the credibility of your conservation efforts, strengthen relationships with stakeholders, and connect beyond your fence-line. Technical Series

Get Your Feet Wet – The Value of Riparian Areas, Wetlands and Other Soggy Places
Presenters: Douglas Wood, Ward Hollow Wildlife Habitat Team Member, Dow/Union Carbide Corporation  |  Kerry Schwartz, Director, Arizona Project WET, University of Arizona

Riparian areas and wetlands are some of the most important sites for biodiversity and the influence they have on fauna and aquatic ecosystems, including grasslands and woodlands. Hear how Dow/Union Carbide’s Ward Hollow Wildlife Habitat volunteers have been improving habitat for extant amphibian populations and restocking extirpated species, and increasing community engagement. You’ll also discover the tools and lessons of Project WET, which teaches youth that science is a fun and interesting way to observe and understand the importance of these unique habitats. We’ll also introduce you to the Five-Star and Urban Waters Restoration Grant Program, which provides funds for wetland, riparian and coastal habitat restoration projects that incorporate conservation education. Technical Series

How to Navigate the Permitting Process Effectively and Efficiently
Presenter: Rick Black, Principal Scientist, Stanley Consultants

Environmental mandates and regulations run the gamut from floodplain, wetlands and sensitive species, to mine land reclamation and natural disaster recovery programs. Learn about the data analysis tools that support consultants and engineers to help businesses and industry comply effectively with these requirements. These tools also help managers understand their managed resources and check the status of the environment using simulations and 2D and 3D visualizations like those available in ArcGIS Pro. Explore alternative analysis and impact recovery trends, build impact analysis scenarios, and follow data through time prior to issuing or applying for permits, all of which will help you better understand your data and navigate through the permitting process more efficiently. Technical Series

Nature Trails: Turning Ordinary Walks into Extraordinary Experiences
Presenter: Jennifer Rigby, Director, The Acorn Group

Leading a walk on a nature trail requires more than calling out the names of plants and animals. To truly connect with your audience, you need to convey a sense of wonder, excitement and passion about a site’s significance. This is the essence of interpretation. This session will reveal guiding points of interpretation that will help you turn an ordinary nature walk into a powerful, transformative experience. Learn how to encourage audience involvement by weaving facts and concepts into themes visitors won’t forget and applying techniques to draw visitors into your site’s story. Technical Series

Optimizing Financial and Reputational Outcomes with Conservation Strategies
Presenters: Susan Kelsey, Global Biodiversity Program Manager, General Motors  |  Jonathon Weier, Natural Resources Planning and Management Lead, CH2M

Is your business making the most of Conservation Certification and biodiversity alignments to generate financial and reputational benefits? The thought-provoking case studies highlighted in this session include a look at remediation and mitigation projects from liability management that extend beyond satisfying regulatory requirements, the advantages of synergies with operations, and the utilization of ecosystem service opportunities provided by the landscape to help facilitate divestiture. You’ll also explore best practices including aligning your corporate biodiversity program to UN SDG goals. Corporate Series

What Everyone Should Know to Develop a Successful Monitoring Protocol
Presenter:  Jeff Waldon, Wildlife Biologist, Independent WHC Project Reviewer

Monitoring is a crucial step to developing a credible and valuable conservation project that meets the goals of Conservation Certification. This workshop will provide you with simple guidance and rules to develop monitoring protocols for WHC projects and will emphasize the difference between describing the project versus actually monitoring the project to help you improve your monitoring and application. Starter Series

New Location for 2017!

Baltimore Marriott Waterfront
700 Aliceanna Street, Baltimore, MD 21202

Reservations can be made online or by calling 877-212-5752. Be sure to mention you’re attending the Wildlife Habitat Council Conservation Conference. Rooms are $229 per night. The WHC room block expires on October 13.

Discover waterfront relaxation in the heart of Baltimore. Boasting spacious, tastefully designed hotel rooms and an extensive array of first-class amenities, the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront is a terrific hotel location in downtown’s bustling Harbor East district, just steps from top-quality shopping and dining. The hotel rooms and suites offer flat-screen TVs, deluxe bedding, an ergonomic work space, and more, while many rooms feature striking waterfront views of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. Savor fine dining at Apropoe’s, our hotel’s signature restaurant, take a dip in our indoor pool, or stay productive at our business center. In addition, the hotel’s ideal placement offers simple access to the Baltimore Aquarium, Fells Point, and Camden Yards.

The Baltimore Marriott Waterfront is a 24-minute drive from BWI Marshall Airport, and easy to reach from Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and New York from Interstate 95 or via Amtrak.

Area Attractions

Join us in Baltimore – a city with a rich, diverse history, culture and amenities that offer visitors a unique and positive experience. All of Baltimore’s major tourism assets, from the Convention Center and hotels, to restaurants, attractions and retail venues, are open for business and available for you to enjoy. The proud Baltimore residents who staff all of those venues are eager to share them with you. For more information visit www.baltimore.org or the Marriott’s local attraction guide.

Just a few of the many places to see in Baltimore during your visit:

  • Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum
  • Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Museum
  • Baltimore Museum of Art
  • Baltimore Zoo
  • Camden Yards – home of the Baltimore Orioles, including Sports Legend Museum
  • Edgar Allan Poe House and Museum
  • Federal Hill
  • Fell’s Point
  • Fort McHenry National Monument
  • Gallery Shops at Harborplace
  • Inner Harbor
  • M&T Stadium – home of the Baltimore Ravens
  • National Aquarium
  • Maryland Science Center
  • Star Spangled Banner Flag House

Recognizing excellence in corporate conservation

Each year, we honor programs and projects that demonstrate excellence in the areas of wildlife habitat enhancement and restoration, and conservation education. The 2017 WHC Awards will include:

Corporate Conservation Leadership Award
Our top award honors one company’s overall achievement in conservation efforts, and signifies an exemplary level of corporate commitment to biodiversity and conservation education, and meaningful alignments with global conservation objectives.

Employee Engagement Award

Presented to one organization, this award recognizes a company’s involvement in conservation through the sheer force of its employee teams who participate in its habitat and conservation education activities.

Gold Program Award

This award recognized the overall depth of one exceptional program in the Gold Certified tier.

Project Awards (to be determined)

CORPORATE CONSERVATION LEADERSHIP AWARD
Winner General Motors Company

EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT AWARD
Winner General Motors Company

GOLD PROGRAM AWARD
Winner CEMEX, El Carmen 

Avian Project Award
Winner Freeport-McMoRan Inc., Safford Operations
– General Motors, St. Catharines Powertrain
– Oldcastle Materials, Oldcastle Nature Trail at the Marcus Autism Center

Awareness and Community Engagement Project Award
– Buzzi Unicem USA, Inc., Wildlife Habitat and Outdoor Classroom, Pryor, OK
Winner CEMEX, Atotonilco 
– Monsanto, Monsanto Chesterfield

Bats Project Award
– DTE Energy, Belle River Mills Compressor Station
Winner DTE Energy, Muskegon Service Center 
– Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc, Toyota Motor Manufacturing, West Virginia Inc.

Desert Project Award
Winner CEMEX, El Carmen 

Forest Project Award
Winner CEMEX, El Carmen 
– Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Farley Nuclear Plant
– Monsanto, Monsanto Chesterfield

Formal Learning Project Award
– Bridgestone Americas, Inc., Bridgestone Neumaticos de Monterrey
– General Motors, Joinville Engine
Winner General Motors, Langley (Vancouver) Parts Distribution Centre 

Grasslands Project Award
– Exelon Corporation, Lake Forest Prairie
– Exelon Corporation, Pratts Wayne Woods
Winner Freeport-McMoRan Inc., Tyrone 

Green Infrastructure Project Award
– Monsanto, Monsanto Company Chesterfield
– ITC Holdings, Belleville Warehouse
Winner ITC Holdings, Wayland Warehouse 

Invasive Species Coordinated Approaches Project Award
 Winner LafargeHolcim, Lafarge Texada Quarry 

Invasive Species Project Award
– Oldcastle Materials, Oldcastle Nature Trail at the Marcus Autism Center
Winner Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Farley Nuclear Plant 

IVM Project Award
Winner Pacific Gas & Electric Corporation, El Cerrito Integrated Vegetation Management Program 
– Pepco Holdings, Inc., Transmission Right-of-Way

Landscaping Project Award
Winner California Resources Corporation, THUMS Islands 
– General Motors, Boryeong Transmission
– ITC Holdings, Belleville Warehouse

Mammals Project Award
Winner CEMEX, El Carmen 
– Koch Industries, Inc., Beaverhead Ranch

Other Habitats Project Award
Winner Bridgestone Americas, Inc., Bridgestone Neumaticos de Monterrey 

Pollinator Project Award
– General Motors, Rochester Operations
– Monsanto, Hollandale Site
Winner Oldcastle Materials, Oldcastle Nature Trail at the Marcus Autism Center 

Reptiles and Amphibians Project Award
– Abbott, Abbott Park
Winner Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Farley Nuclear Plant 

Species of Concern Project Award
Winner CEMEX, El Carmen 
– Vulcan Materials Company, Cantera CALICA

Training Project Award
Winner Buzzi Unicem USA, Inc., Wildlife Habitat and Outdoor Classroom, Pryor, OK 
– General Motors, Edmonton Parts Distribution Centre
– General Motors, Langley (Vancouver) Parts Distribution Centre

Wetlands and Water Bodies Project Award
Winner CSX Transportation, CSX Nocatee Site 
– Waste Management, Oak Ridge Recycling and Disposal Facility
– Waste Management, SCA Independent Landfill

Award nominees and winners were chosen from Conservation Certification applications submitted from January 1, 2016 – August 1, 2016. (Applications received after August 1, 2016 will be considered for the 2017 WHC Awards. Applications under appeal are not considered.)

Corporate Conservation Leadership Award
Our top award honors one company’s overall achievement in conservation efforts, and signifies an exemplary level of corporate commitment to biodiversity and conservation education, and meaningful alignments with global conservation objectives.

Employee Engagement Award

Presented to one organization, this award recognizes a company’s involvement in conservation through the sheer force of its employee teams who participate in its habitat and conservation education activities.

Gold Program Award

This award recognized the overall depth of one exceptional program in the Gold Certified tier.

Avian Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest-scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate monitoring of targeted species and at least 1 associated factor (e.g. food sources), and the project must be adaptively managed.

Awareness and Community Engagement Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project meets a need identified by an external group, company or community group based on study or other information, and must clearly relate to a habitat or species project on-site (or support some other conservation project).

Bats Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate monitoring of targeted species and at least 1 associated factor (e.g. food sources), and includes evaluation of monitoring results to develop next steps for the project.

Desert Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project must have appropriate adaptive management practices, annual monitoring, and includes evaluation of monitoring results to develop next steps for the project.

Forest Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project must be adaptively managed using appropriate techniques, and monitored adequately at least once per year with results evaluated to create next steps.

Formal Learning Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project must be mapable to academic standards, meet a need identified by the community, and clearly relate to a habitat or species project on site (or support some other conservation project).

Grasslands Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate monitoring of vegetation at least two times a year or adequate monitoring of vegetation at least annually, demonstrates adequate monitoring of at least 1 additional aspect (e.g. wildlife use), and uses the evaluation to create next steps for the project.

Green Infrastructure Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates that there are multiple features of the project that directly impact biodiversity, and the information about the biodiversity impacts are shared.

Invasive Species Coordinated Approaches Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project must have a comprehensive plan to identify, control and prevent invasive species.

Invasive Species Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate annual monitoring, and the control and prevention methods should incorporate appropriate practices. 

IVM Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project has a procedure in place documenting that vegetation management was completed, and the information from the evaluation is used to determine next steps in the project.

Landscaping Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project has an adequate monitoring protocol, and the results of the evaluation are used to create next steps for the project.

Mammals Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate monitoring of the targeted species, and the monitoring results are used to create next steps for the project.

Other Habitats Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project is adaptively managed using appropriate techniques and monitored adequately with results evaluated to create the next steps for the project.

Pollinator Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate monitoring of targeted species at least once per year and at least 1 associated factor (e.g.  food sources), and should have a policy integrated into overall site operations to minimize, eliminate or apply responsible use practices of pesticides and herbicides with supporting documentation.

Reptiles and Amphibians Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate monitoring of the targeted species and at least 1 associated factor (such as food sources), and uses the results of monitoring data to create next steps in the project.

Species of Concern Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project must include a commitment to long-term or permanent protection, and the data collected about the target species during monitoring is shared with external organizations.

Training Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project must meet a need identified by an external group, company or community group based on study or other information, and the project must clearly relate to a habitat or species project on-site ( or support some other conservation project).

Wetlands and Water Bodies Project Award
Awarded to one of the highest scoring projects in this theme, the project demonstrates adequate monitoring and use of monitoring data to create next steps in the project.

For more information, please contact Thelma Redick at tredick@wildlifehc.org

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PRICING DEADLINES August 25
Biggest Savings!
August 26 – October 13  October 14 – November 7
Includes on-site registration
Member $600 $725 $850
Non-Member $675 $799 $925
Non-Profit, Government $375 $425 $475

Registration Policies
Registration includes five (5) meals, including the WHC Awards Dinner, and admission to all sessions. Registration is not final until payment has been received. Substitutions will be allowed. Refund Policy: 100% before August 1, 2017; 50% between August 1 and September 1, 2017; no refunds after September 1, 2017. All requests for substitutions and refunds must be made in writing to conservationconference@wildlifehc.org.