Potomac Champions Awards 2016

Potomac Champions2The Alice Ferguson Foundation’s Potomac Champion award is presented to those who make an extra effort to achieve a Trash Free Potomac Watershed. Congratulations to this year’s winners!

Policy Leaders:
The Honorable Rushern L. Baker, III: During his tenure as Prince George’s County Executive, Mr. Baker has concentrated on improving the quality of life for county residents. His Transforming Neighborhoods Initiative has included a focus on cleaning up trash in communities most in need. Under his leadership Prince George’s County has, once again, led the state in diverting waste from landfills. The County’s Yard Waste Composting Program processes more than 50 tons of material annually and the County’s innovative Public Private Partnership approach to stormwater management have earned widespread accolades.

The Honorable Muriel Bowser: As a signatory to the Trash Treaty while serving as a member of the Council of the District of Columbia, Ms. Bowser has been a long-standing supporter of efforts to rid the city of trash and clean up the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. Since becoming Mayor in 2015, she has continued to chart a strong course for sustainability in the nation’s capital and made the restoration of the Anacostia River a priority. Implementation of the city’s Styrofoam ban, is among the priorities being carried out by the District Department of Energy and Environment, which also oversees enforcement of the city’s bag law, which was the first in the region.

The Honorable Isiah “Ike” Leggett: As he enters his second decade as Montgomery County Executive, Mr. Leggett has built a formidable list of ‘firsts.’ Under his leadership the County implemented the first MS-4 program in Maryland; implemented the state’s first and only bag law designed to reduce litter and protect the environment; and initiated the County’s green business certification program. He was a strong supporter of the Styrofoam ban, which took effect at the beginning of this year and has also required Montgomery County government buildings to be LEED-certified, which among other things encourages the use of recycled materials.

Julie Lawson, Trash Free Maryland: Known as a tireless and effective advocate for policy changes around the region, Ms. Lawson has been at the forefront of every impactful law on the books, from bag laws, to Styrofoam bans, to the groundbreaking legislation on microbeads in Maryland, that served as a catalyst for the national law signed by President Obama in December of 2015. In her role as Executive Director of the Trash Free Maryland Alliance, Julie was instrumental in bringing attention to the pervasive problem of plastics in the Chesapeake Bay when she initiated the first ‘Trash Trawl’ in 2014, an effort which was replicated last year.

Education Leader:
Maurice Collier-Shabazz: Mr. Collier-Shabazz has led Prince George’s County’s Phyllis E. Williams Elementary School in becoming a Trash Free School, with the ultimate goal of achieving Green School Certification through the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education. A passionate partner and committed partner since 2013, he has also participated in Schoolyards as Classrooms Teacher Training at AFF’s Hard Bargain Farm Education Center.

Enforcement Partner:
District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Department, Sixth District: Under the leadership of Commander David Taylor, the Sixth District has made a strong commitment to community engagement, including a focus on conducting community cleanups throughout the year. District officers have led continual and effective litter enforcement efforts in Ward 7 including a strong focus on ticketing during Litter Enforcement Month and a partnership with the District’s Department of Public Works to address illegal dumping cleanup and enforcement.

Frankie Sherman

Cleanup Leader:
Frankie Sherman, Charles County Maryland: For singlehandedly organizes Southern Maryland Cleanup efforts in Charles and St. Mary’s County serving as the main point of contact. She is the distribution point for supplies and verifies registration for local entities. Frankie is instrumental in increasing Charles County Recycling Rate by putting 96 gal containers in Charles County homes for single stream recycling.

Community Leader:
Deborah Turner: As the Garden Coordinator for the District Heights Community Garden Program, Ms. Turner has organized numerous Stream Cleanups in District Heights and is a strong supporter of the Litter Prevention Campaign. Ms. Turner also sits on the Environmental Action Committee for Prince George’s Department of the Environment and is an active member of her community.