Conservationist of the Year

Swan Trust biologist Cynthia Rohrbach  admires a rare Canada lily.

Swan Trust biologist Cynthia Rohrbach admires a rare Canada lily.

Swan Trust Board Trustee and former president, Cynthia Rohrbach received the Tennessee Scenic River Association’s highest award: Conservationist of the Year 2005.

Below the letter nominating her for the award, submitted by John McFadden, Director of Science and Restoration, TSRA/DROP

“Since 1999, the Tennessee Scenic Rivers Association’s Duck River Opportunities Project (DROP) has been working with local stakeholders in the Duck River watershed to protect and restore water quality and habitat.

As a part of this effort DROP engaged the community youth through a partnership with GM-Spring Hill, the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation’s (TDEC) Green Schools Program, Swan Conservation Trust, and others.

Through those partnerships, Cynthia Rohrbach has been a leader in conservation education, preservation, and restoration.

As Green Schools Program Coordinator for TDEC, she has been instrumental in the success of the DROP’s youth education program. One component involves getting teachers and students out to creeks to conduct water quality sampling.

Cynthia helped develop standard volunteer water sampling protocols (currently under review by USEPA), trained teachers, and participated in over 100 water-quality sampling events.

As many are aware, Cynthia has been on Swan Conservation Trust’s Board since its founding in 1992. She was the mover and shaker that helped get the valuable, pristine headwaters of Big Swan Creek, a major tributary of the Duck River, under permanent protection.

Finally, Cynthia has also been actively involved in the restoration of streams in the Swan Creek watershed. For example, when TDOT began the road-widening project of Hwy 412 in Lewis County, Cynthia was quick to find a solution for regulators to get mitigation monies on the ground. This one project stabilized 943 feet of eroding stream bank and planted over 500 seedlings in the riparian zone.

As you can see, Cynthia is well deserving of the Tennessee Scenic Rivers Associations’ Conservationist of the Year 2005!”

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