August 15, 2011
WLT-US Deputy Director Dr. Robert Ridgely was recently given the Ralph W. Schreiber Conservation Award by the American Ornithologists' Union. The award honors extraordinary scientific contributions in the field of conservation, restoration, and preservation of birds and their habitats by an individual.
The award, consisting of a framed certificate and honorarium, was presented at the AOU's annual banquet in Jacksonville, Florida.
Dr. Ridgely is a leading expert on the birds of South America and a proponent of private reserve systems as a conservation strategy for endangered tropical bird species. Previously, he served as Director of International Conservation at National Audubon Society and of the Center for Neotropical Ornithology at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia. He is an ornithologist and the author of many important books on Neotropical birds, including the acclaimed Birds of South America (vols. 1 and 2), Birds of Ecuador, and Birds of Panama.
A true conservationist, Dr. Ridgely very generously donated his award stipend to WLT-US in support of future land purchases in Ecuador.
The award is funded by an endowment from Ralph W. Schreiber, a prominent figure in the AOU known for his enthusiasm, energy, and dedication to research and conservation, particularly of seabirds. Previous awardees are listed on the AOU website.
Dr. Ridgely has worked tirelessly for decades in the pursuit of lasting conservation. A noted author and conservationist, Robert serves as Deputy Director of WLT-US and is the founder and Board Chairman of the Jocotoco Foundation in Ecuador.
Previously, he received the Eisenmann Medal from the Linnaean Society of New York.
The WLT-US team congratulates him on yet another in a long line of brilliant successes.