Arizona Heritage Alliance Board Meets for Annual Meeting

Say hello to the Arizona Heritage Alliance board of directors. You can’t see the others who were there via conference call! — with Peter Culp, Barbra Barnes, Jennifer Martin, Janice Miano, Matt Fesko, Margaret Bohannan, Bob White, Kathy Roediger, Bonnie Bariola, Beth Woodin, Bob Bohannan & Jim McPherson at the Flinn Foundation.

33rd Annual Arizona Forward Environmental Excellence Awards

Arizona Heritage Alliance Board Members: Jim McPherson, Elizabeth Woodin, Sam Campana, Janice Miano, Matt Fesko, Thom Hulen & Bonnie Bariola.

[Source: Bonnie Bariola, TriValleyCentral.com] – More that 100 entries were received in this year’s competition, demonstrating the priority of sustainable design and development in Arizona. Categories for submissions were: Buildings and structures, livable communities, site development and landscape, art in public places, environmental technologies, environmental education/communication, and environmental stewardship.

Arizona Forward initiated the Environmental Excellence Awards in 1980 to recognize outstanding contributions to the physical environment of our local communities.  The program has grown significantly and now serves as a benchmark for promoting livability, conserving natural resources and sustaining our unique desert environment for future generations.

Janice Miano, executive director of the Heritage Alliance, was the recipient of Arizona Forward’s Award of Merit for Environmental Stewardship (SRP Award). The Arizona Heritage Alliance continues its efforts to get the Arizona State Parks portion of the Heritage Fund restored.

The Arizona Heritage Alliance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization created in 1992 to protect Arizona’s Heritage Fund and its objectives. It is guided by a board of directors drawn from a broad base of outdoor sports, environmental conservation, and historic preservation organizations that helped pass the 1990 statewide voter initiative creating the Heritage Fund. After numerous state legislative attempts, unfortunately during extreme difficult economic times, in 2009 the Legislature was successful in eliminating one-half of the Heritage Fund.

Since that time, Janice has lead the Heritage Alliance Board of Directors and others, both organizations and individuals, working to persuade the Legislature to restore the funds and the statutory language which also had been removed. She has worked with a growing coalition of groups like Arizona Forward, the Sierra Club, Arizona Audubon, The Nature Conservancy, the State Parks Foundation, the Historic Preservation Foundation and many others as well as with many concerned individuals to come up with other ways of fulfilling the promise of the Heritage Fund and Arizona State Parks.

Janice has left no stone unturned in the search for a way to recover the lost ability of citizens to enhance and protect the historic, natural, and recreational values lost during that dark, closed-door budget-balancing session in 2009.

Editor’s Note: Bonnie Bariola represents the Florence Preservation Foundation on the Heritage Alliance Board of Directors and holds the office of treasurer for the organization.

Black-Footed Ferret spotlighting

[Source: Matt Fesko, Arizona Heritage Alliance Vice-President] – Image

I participated in the Fall 2012 Arizona Department of Game and Fish Black Footed Ferret spotlighting event in Aubrey Valley. Black-footed ferrets (Mustela nigripes) are one of North America’s most endangered mammals. The primary goal of the Arizona reintroduction effort is to establish a free-ranging, self-sustaining population of black-footed ferrets in the Aubrey Valley Experimental Population Area (AVEPA). I was paired with two volunteers from Northern Arizona University. After a short introductory video and training session at the Game and Fish field house in Seligman, we headed out to Aubrey Valley with our spotlights and traps to trap ferrets from 10 pm until 6 am. It was a rewarding experience to see first hand these amazing creatures in their natural nocturnal habits. The Game and Fish staff and all of the volunteers did a fantastic job.

Below are the results of the outing that I received in a very nice thank you card from the Arizona Department of Game and FIsh BFF Team: “Thank you for your help during the 2012 fall spotlighting event. We really would not be able to get the job done without the invaluable help of so many dedicated volunteers. During the fall event we caught 65 ferrets, of which 57 were unique BFF’s. Fifty-one of these ferrets were brand new and 9 of the ferrets trapped had been caught during the previous events, which we like to see because we get an idea of long term survivability in the population. We had 44% trap success this event. Over the 5 nights we had a total of 144 volunteers, of which 103 were brand new. We broke our previous record of 22 ferrets caught in one night, with 23 captured on the first night! With a spring count of 53 individuals and a fall count of 57 individuals we have a minimum population of 110 ferrets; falling just short of last year’s population count of 116. Thank you again for your help and we hope to see you at another event!”