WHC’s Rookie of the Year award recognizes one newly certified Wildlife at Work program each year for outstanding environmental stewardship and voluntary employee efforts.
Only programs receiving initial Wildlife at Work certification are considered for the Rookie of the Year award. The applications of nominees are then sent to an external panel of judges representing the non-profit, corporate, and government sectors. Applications are selected as nominees and winners based on the following criteria:
- Understanding of Wildlife Habitat- The application demonstrates that the wildlife team has a good understanding of the habitat needs of wildlife, and how their program meets these needs.
- Improvement of Native Habitats- The wildlife team has taken actions to improve habitat for native wildlife, and have worked to control invasive species if they are found on the site.
- Scope of Projects- The wildlife team manages a variety of habitats or for a variety of wildlife species, relative to the size of the site.
- Commitment to the Program- The wildlife team demonstrates a commitment to the program by submitting a strong application documenting the planning, implementing, and monitoring of their wildlife program. The application illustrates a strong commitment of time, effort, and resources, relative to the size of the site.
- Outside Group Involvement- The wildlife team works with partners such as conservation organizations, federal and state agencies, and volunteers to accomplish project goals and design a quality program. Outside group involvement includes the involvement of outside groups in on-site or off-site projects, seeking expert technical advice, and/or conducting public tours and providing educational opportunities.
- Assessment of Projects- The wildlife team has collected data on their projects and they use this data to better understand their projects and direct future efforts.
- Credibility- The program is credible, with well planned and implemented projects that are well documented. The wildlife team’s projects would serve as examples to others and would be recognized as valuable by the environmental community.
Learn more about past award winners in the Awards Directory.