Meet Mary Powell

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Craig Terry, ONDA member and stewardship volunteer

Craig Terry, ONDA member and stewardship volunteer

“The people I have had the privilege to share time with each season keep me volunteering again and again. Who else but those ONDA staff leaders would make fresh coffee at dawn each morning or pack a watermelon all day to serve as a reward under a juniper in a steep canyon?” Craig, who grew up in northwestern Nevada, says ONDA connects him with places he loves and a mission he believes in. “My grandfather and his father put up wire fences for their ranching needs. Taking out barbed wire sort of completes a circle for me.”

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Durlin Hicock, Alice Elshoff Award winner

Durlin Hicock, Alice Elshoff Award winner

“Protecting public land is part of my spiritual being. It’s central to my identity to be in wilderness and to see it protected.” Durlin is proud to protect public lands for future generations, saying, “The highlight of my childhood was our family’s weekend outdoor trips. I look forward to my grandchildren having similar experiences outside in their lifetimes, and it wouldn’t be possible without ONDA.”

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Sage-grouse Mating Dance

Sage-grouse Mating Dance

Bringing thoughtful questions

Accepting a joint Volunteer of the Year Award with Phyllis Pengelly

Sage-grouse lek monitoring trip, Hart Mountain

Having stood shoulder-to-shoulder working with Mary at many busy ONDA events, I am delighted to see her recognized with this lifetime achievement award. Mary’s kindness, upbeat energy, can-do spirit, and relentless commitment to conservation are beyond compare.

ONDA established the Elshoff Award in 2008 to honor individuals who embody ONDA’s conservation values, and to celebrate their significant contributions to protecting Oregon’s desert wilderness.

About being named the 2021 Alice Elshoff Conservation Award recipient, Mary said, “ONDA has always been near and dear to our hearts, and we never expected anything in return. The chance to help ONDA has been award enough. I am so deeply honored.”

If you haven’t already met Mary while monitoring sage-grouse, harvesting native plants, or at the Wild and Scenic Film Festival, you can get to know her and learn her reasons for supporting conservation in Oregon’s high desert in this short video produced by ONDA in 2020.

In this video, Mary describes the ONDA community as “family” and shares her appreciation for all the people she’s met and things she’s learned while volunteering with ONDA.

Well, the feeling is mutual Mary! Thank you for your many whole-hearted contributions to our community.

Meet Mary Powell

Author: Allison Crotty  |  Published: February 2, 2022  |  Category: Profile ONDA’s 2021 Alice Elshoff Award Recipient Mary Powell is a woman of many talents. Need to spruce up an […]

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