Finalists announced for 2017 Nature Inspiration Awards from Canadian Museum of Nature - Ceremony on November 8, 2017

Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA

OTTAWA, Sept. 18, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Canadian Museum of Nature, Canada's national museum of natural history and natural sciences, is pleased to announce the 26 finalists for the 2017 Nature Inspiration Awards. These honours recognize individuals, groups and organizations whose leadership and innovation connect Canadians with the natural world.

Some of the finalists are naturalists and scientists, who make discoveries and share their knowledge through outreach. Others are groups that inspire children and adults through hands-on experiences related to biodiversity. Some show leadership in sustainable business practices or community action, while others shine a light on the importance of nature through creative endeavours and innovative programs.    

The shortlist for the 2017 awards comprises finalists in six categories: Youth (aged 17 and younger), Individuals (aged 18 and up), Not-for-Profits (small to medium), Not-for-Profits (large), Businesses (small to medium), Businesses (large). They include youth committed to environmental education and social activism, to retirees with a legacy of dedication to conservation. A special Lifetime Achievement award will be presented this year to biological oceanographer and Arctic research leader, Dr. Louis Fortier, the Scientific Director of ArcticNet.   

"Now in its fourth year, these awards celebrate the many ways and reasons that people and organizations seek a healthy engagement with the natural world. This year’s finalists provide inspiring examples of what it means to connect with nature, promote its value and find solutions to living sustainably with it,” says Meg Beckel, President and CEO of the Canadian Museum of Nature and Chair/ex-officio member of the selection jury. ““All should be proud of what they do, and we are grateful for the opportunity to recognize their achievements with the Nature Inspiration Awards.”

The museum will host a gala on November 8 to celebrate the finalists, and to announce the winners in each category. Presenting sponsor for the 2017 awards is Enbridge Inc. Bruce Power is a category sponsor (Not-for-Profits, large). Media partners are The Walrus and The Globe and Mail.

"We are pleased to support the 2017 Nature Inspiration Awards and we congratulate all nominees for the diverse activities and projects they are undertaking to promote environmental innovation and sustainability across Canada," says Linda Coady, Chief Sustainability Officer, Enbridge Inc. “This year’s finalists are an extraordinary group of individuals and organizations from all walks of life. At Enbridge we are committed to environmental stewardship and it is our privilege to help sponsor the Nature Inspiration Awards." 

In addition to Meg Beckel, the jury included Shelley Ambrose, Executive Director/Co-Publisher, The Walrus; Carolynn Beaty, The Sitka Foundation; Linda Coady, Chief Sustainability Officer, Enbridge; Jack Cockwell, Chairman/CEO, Partners Limited; Philip Crawley, Publisher, The Globe and Mail; John Geiger, CEO, Royal Canadian Geographic Society; Geoff Green, Founder and Executive Director, Students on Ice Foundation; and Arnold Witzig, Co-Founder, Arctic Inspiration Prize. Winners for each category receive $5,000 that they can designate to a beneficial program of their choice. The Nature Inspiration Awards are produced by the Canadian Museum of Nature. Full details at                                                                                                                                                        
Here is the list of finalists:
Youth category (aged 17 and under)

  • Savannah Myers, Morrisburg, Ontario
  • Stella Bowles, LaHave, Nova Scotia

Individual category (aged 18 and up)

  • Adam Oliver Brown, biologist/science communicator, Gatineau, Quebec
  • Howard Clifford, nature advocate, Lanark, Ontario
  • Maxwell Finkelstein, conservation  leader/writer/adventurer, Ottawa, Ontario
  • Sandra Lawn, administrator, Prescott, Ontario
  • Shannon Dyck, sustainable housing advocate, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan             

Not-For-Profit category (small/medium organization)

  • ALUS Canada, land-use conservation, Toronto, Ontario
  • Arctic Eider Society, environmental stewardship, St. John’s, Newfoundland
  • Group for Research and Education on Marine Mammals, Tadoussac, Quebec
  • Nature Canada, Keep Cats Safe/Save Bird Lives program, Ottawa, Ontario
  • Power To Be, accessible outdoor education, Victoria, British Columbia                                            

Not-For-Profit category (large organization)

  • ArcticNet, Inc., research network, Quebec City, Quebec
  • Rideau Valley Conservation Authority, City Stream Watch, Manotick, Ontario
  • Royal Ontario Museum, Blue Whale story, Toronto, Ontario
  • Scouts Canada, environmental/park programs, Ottawa, Ontario
  • Wesley Clover Parks, outdoor recreation area, Ottawa, Ontario             

Business category (small/medium)

  • Baka Communications Inc., wireless retail/sustainable business, Etobicoke, Ontario
  • Fresh City, city farm/sustainable agriculture, Toronto, Ontario
  • Greenbug Energy Inc., hydro-systems designer/manufacturer, Delhi, Ontario
  • Helping Nature Heal, Inc., ecological landscaper, Bridgewater, Nova Scotia
  • Ungalli Clothing Co., sustainable fashion, Thunder Bay, Ontario

Business Category (large)

  • Coca-Cola Canada, water reclamation, Toronto, Ontario
  • Samsung Electronics Canada Inc., Solve for Tomorrow Challenge, Toronto, Ontario
  • Scotts Canada Ltd., community garden projects, Mississauga, Ontario
  • Sherritt International, sustainable resource management, Toronto, Ontario

About the Canadian Museum of Nature
The Canadian Museum of Nature The museum provides evidence-based insights, inspiring experiences and meaningful engagement with nature's past, present and future. It achieves this through scientific research, a collection of 14.6 million specimens and artifacts, education programs, signature and travelling exhibitions, and a dynamic web site,

Information for media:

Dan Smythe
Senior Media Relations Officer
Canadian Museum of Nature
613.566.4781; 1.800.263.4433

John Swettenham
Director, Marketing and Media Relations
Canadian Museum of Nature
613.566.4249; 1.800.263.4433