Announcing the 2020 Karen Danielsen Outstanding Stewardship Award Recipient

The Karen Danielsen Outstanding Stewardship Award is given each year to an outstanding volunteer for the Superior Rivers Watershed Association. The award was created in honor of Karen Danielsen, a founding board member and dedicated water quality sampler, who passed away in 2009. Karen served on the Board of Directors from 2003 to 2008, fulfilling the roles of both President and Vice President during her tenure. Her professional expertise as a forest ecologist helped the Bad River Watershed Association establish itself as a credible volunteer organization. She was a strong voice for the organization and attracted many colleagues.

This has been a long, hard year. COVID has made our normal annual membership celebration and award giving impossible, but we continue to adapt. This year, we must present our award recipient to you, our membership, virtually in email and social media.

We are honored to announce that this year we posthumously award the Karen Danielsen Outstanding Stewardship Award to…

Michele Wheeler

 

Michele was hired in 2007 as our first Executive Director. She shaped our organization from a band of volunteers at the grassroots level into a thriving office of paid staff and a leader in water quality monitoring and watershed restoration.

After leaving her position as executive director in 2012, Michele continued to volunteer and contribute her knowledge, skills, and passion to the organization as a valued member of the Program Committee up through the beginning of 2020. Her guidance continues to guide our organization’s methodology. A fisheries biologist, Bad River Watershed Association executive director, and DNR’s Lake Superior Coordinator for the Lake-wide Action and Management Plan, Michele was an inspiration in the scientific and northern Wisconsin community.

Michele had a rare mix of talents and qualities. She had an incredible scientific mind which was creative and boundless. She constantly found new ways to engage the community and partner stakeholders in ways that maximized everyone’s talents, and she never failed to encourage people of all demographics to become excited to learn and help. She was friendly, relatable, and an amazing communicator with a gift for uniting people and building partnerships. Michele made everyone feel welcome, heard, and important. Her passion inspired everyone around her.

We are awarding Michele the Karen Danielsen Outstanding Stewardship Award posthumously in recognition of her lifelong career of stewardship for the watershed, science, community, and the world around her.

 

 

The Throbbing Moon and the Three Season Tango

What does it mean to be told in your life’s prime this time the cancer is terminal? For author Michele Wheeler – a gifted scientist, a born leader and intrepid environmentalist, and a caring mother, wife, sister, and daughter – it means you focus what strength, intelligence, and will you have remaining to offer the world yet one more extraordinary gift.

Find Michele’s book at a local book store!

Honest Dog Books

Apostle Island Booksellers

Spinster Books

Chequamegon Books

Redbery Books

 

About Karen Danielsen

Karen served on the Board of Directors from 2003 to 2008, fulfilling the roles of both President and Vice President during her tenure. Her professional expertise as a forest ecologist helped the Bad River Watershed Association establish itself as a credible volunteer organization. She was a strong voice for the organization and attracted many colleagues.

Read more about Karen Danielsen

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