Ducks Unlimited (DU) announced today the winners of the 2014 Wetlands Conservation Achievement Awards during the 79th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources conference, held at the Denver Sheraton. This year’s recipient of the Conservation/Private Entity award is Mr. Phil Precht, based in Houma, La.
“Phil is amid a long-term career in land management and wetlands conservation across the Louisiana Coast. As director of ConocoPhillips’ Coastal Wetlands, he has made vital contributions to conservation partnerships, habitat protection, and restoration,” DU Chief Conservation Officer Paul Schmidt said during the awards presentation. “His 35 years of dedication to wetland resources, collaboration and to the people who will carry on this dedication make him especially deserving of this award.”
DU’s Wetland Conservation Achievement Awards recognize individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the restoration and conservation of North America’s wetlands and other waterfowl habitat.
“I want to thank the leadership of ConocoPhillips for giving me the opportunity to grow conservation partnerships along Louisiana’s Gulf Coast,” says Mr. Precht. “I am proud to accept this award on behalf of the entire staff of the Coastal Wetlands Group in Houma, Louisiana, without whom none of this would have been possible.”
Notably, Mr. Precht and his team oversee and manage the wetlands owned by Conoco Phillips’ affiliate, The Louisiana Land & Exploration Company LLC (LL&E), which is the largest span of privately owned wetlands along the Gulf Coast (636,000 acres). These wetlands also form the foundation of the Barataria-Terrebonne Estuarine System, one of the world’s most expansive and productive, yet fragile, estuarine systems. Mr. Precht fully understands the urgency required in this challenging environment and fosters a sense of team-work, collaboration and results-oriented action to tackle challenges head on.
“Soon after meeting Phil several years ago, he asked me how private landowners could more successfully engage in project planning for coastal restoration,” said Rachel Sweeney, biologist with the habitat conservation division of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s fisheries service. “It became clear to me that Phil believed that cross-organization collaboration could result in more effective understanding of coastal wetland loss and management issues, development of more optimal project concepts, and improved success in project implementation.”
To view all 2014 Wetland Conservation Achievement Award winners, please visit www.ducks.org.
Image courtesy Ducks Unlimited