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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Cherokee native awarded conservation internship

Friday, June 12, 2009

Mark Wilson
The Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation has selected Mark Wilson, a graduate of Washington High School, as a land stewardship intern for the summer of 2009.

Wilson is a student at the University of Northern Iowa and hopes to pursue a career in land management.

Wilson and nine other land stewardship interns will spend the summer traveling and working together, removing invasive plant species and planting native Iowa species in INHF's prairie preserves and other habitats. These preserves are owned by INHF or by private landowners who have committed to permanent preservation of natural environments.

Wilson said INHF's reach is important to conservation in the state.

"INHF has the ability to protect lots of land more easily than almost all the other organizations around, so I think that's huge; just getting the land protected in the first place," he said.

Wilson was selected from a field of 38 applicants from across the Midwest.

Joe McGovern, INHF's land stewardship program director, said the interns are vital to the organization's mission.

"It would be nearly impossible to meet our objectives without the land management intern crew that we have," McGovern said. "We're constantly trying to get a lot of work done, but it's more than that. Through their hard work, we get to take time to educate them about how to do things, introducing them to new methods and private landowners that they may not have experienced before."

INHF is a natural conservation organization, dedicated to the preservation and restoration of the state's environmental treasures. Its past projects in Cherokee County include the Martin Wildlife Area Addition and the Alliband Conservation Easement.

Wilson's internship is sponsored by Richard "Sandy" Rhodes. Through a gift in his estate, Rhodes funded INHF stewardship and conservation projects to save the object of his lifelong passion: the prairie.

For more information about INHF, visit www.inhf.org or call 515-288-1846. Information on INHF's internship program can be found at http://www.inhf.org/aboutinternships.htm.

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