Niagara Resident Honoured As One of Ontario’s Conservation Leaders

Grimsby Resident Bruce MacKenzie Recognized by Ontario Nature for Work Protecting Nature

A News Release from Ontario Nature, one of the Province’s Major Non-Profit Advocacy Group for Conserving our Natural Heritage

Posted June 15th, 2021 on Niagara At Large

A Brief Forward Note from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper – 

Grimsby resident and long-time citizen conservationist Bruce MacKenzie

Bruce MacKenzie, a resident of the Niagara, Ontario municipality of Grimsby, has been a dedicated campaigner for natural heritage protection for many years now.

How good it is that he has now been recognized by one of the province’s premier conservation groups, Ontario Nature for all of his selfless efforts.

Bruce MacKenzie currently sits as a citizen member for Grimsby on the Board of Directors for the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA) and is the board’s Vice-Chair.

Unfortunately, Ontario’s Ford government has recently passed legislation to weaken Conservation Authorities across the province as advocates for conservation – legislation that will, among other things, purge ordinary citizens like Bruce MacKenzie from sitting on Conservation Authority boards.

Ford wants only hand-picked, elected politicians serving on Conservation Authority boards. Heaven help us if those boards also included citizens outside of politics who have a true love for our natural heritage.

Here is the write-up Ontario Nature posted on its site for the award is presented this spring to Bruce MacKenzie –

Bruce MacKenzie – J.R. Dymond Public Service Award for public service that resulted in exceptional environmental achievement to Bruce MacKenzie for extensive efforts to restore a decommissioned sewage lagoon to a natural wetland known as the Grimsby Wetlands.

Bruce MacKenzie, out in our green places in Niagara, where he loves to be.

Now here is Ontario Nature’s recent news release for all its 2021 award winners –

 Ontario Nature celebrated 90 years of protecting wild species and spaces at its annual gathering and conservation awards ceremony on June 12, 2021. This year, Ontario Nature recognized the exceptional contributions to natural habitat protection made by organizations, individuals and companies. Their dedication inspires everyone to continue to fight to protect nature in Ontario.

The winners are:

Ontario Nature Achievement Award for outstanding contribution to the activities of Ontario Nature to John Lounds who served for six years as Executive Director of Ontario Nature then as Chief Executive Officer of Nature Conservancy of Canada until stepping down in 2020.

W. E. Saunders Natural History Award for achievement in natural history research to Owen Clarkin for spearheading an extensive survey of remnant habitat of rare red spruce in eastern Ontario with hundreds of hours of volunteer fieldwork.

Richards Education Award for helping people understand the natural world to David Hawke for many years in nature education as interpretive naturalist at Wye Marsh Wildlife Interpretive Centre and subsequently at Tiny Marsh Provincial Wildlife Area, part-time instructor at Georgian College and Lakehead University, and writing nature columns in local newspapers.

W.W.H. Gunn Conservation Award for outstanding commitment to nature conservation over many years to Karen Yukich for her dedication to the restoration and conservation of nature in Toronto’s High Park.

Ian Shenstone Fraser Memorial Award for making a significant contribution toward a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in Ontario to Don and Marnie Ross for helping establish the UNESCO Frontenac Arch Biosphere Reserve and working with land trusts to expand natural protected areas within the Frontenac Arch.

Carl Nunn Media and Conservation Award for effective communication on conservation issues in the media to Leah Gerber who, as a reporter for the Waterloo Region Record newspaper, writes stories focusing on the Grand River Watershed.

Lee Symmes Municipal Award to a town, city or municipality for implementing programs that protect the natural environment to the City of Kingston for declaring a climate emergency, and implementing numerous nature-based solutions and climate change mitigation measures.

J.R. Dymond Public Service Award for public service that resulted in exceptional environmental achievement to Bruce MacKenzie for extensive efforts to restore a decommissioned sewage lagoon to a natural wetland known as the Grimsby Wetlands.

Ontario Nature Corporate Award for an organization demonstrating outstanding action in the environmental field to Ontario Power Generation – Wesleyville for actions to improve nature conservation including restoration activities at Wesleyville Creek for brook trout, monitoring and research at Wesleyville coastal marsh and bluebird, tree swallow and wood duck nesting box and osprey platform program.

The Steve Hounsell Greenway Award for working to preserve a natural heritage system core area or corridor to Land Over Landings for working to preserve the rich farmland and natural heritage features of the former airport lands in north Pickering.

Margaret and Carl Nunn Memorial Camp Scholarship for youth showing interest and leadership potential in natural history to attend Nature Camp at Camp Kawartha to Sarah Inglis, a 14-year-old resident of Cobourg who helps with Willow Beach Field Naturalist activities, and is interested in birds and other wildlife.

About Ontario Nature – Ontario Nature protects wild species and wild spaces through conservation, education and public engagement. Ontario Nature is a charitable organization representing more than 30,000 members and supporters, and 155 member groups across Ontario.

For more information about Ontario Nature,  visit

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders


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