The Wisconsin Conservation Hall of Fame (WCHF), the only such Hall of Fame in the USA is inducting Hugh Iltis this year. Hugh was a major force in a number of conservation endeavors in Wisconsin, and was also called upon by Wild Ones to share his knowledge of botany during the early days of its formation. His technical bulletin Atlas of the Wisconsin Prairie and Savanna Flora published in 2000 is still being used today.
In 1960, Hugh co-founded The Nature Conservancy in Wisconsin and championed its efforts to protect natural areas by serving on its Board, providing technical and scientific advice on acquisitions, and working with landowners to protect some of Wisconsin’s most unique ecosystems such as the Baraboo Hills and Chiwaukee Prairie. He was a collaborator with Lorrie Otto and many other conservationists to ban DDT in Wisconsin and in America. During much of his time at UW-Madison’s Botany Department, Hugh was the Director of the UW Herbarium.
Other inductees are Milly Zantow, a citizen activist from North Freedom who helped launch the recycling revolution in Wisconsin and in America. Recognized for her foresight and determination, Zantow was a major contributor to the framing of the 1990 Wisconsin Recycling Law which required municipalities to collect plastics, metals, paper, and glass to keep them out of landfills. Because of this law, the most comprehensive state recycling program in the nation at that time, she provided advice on setting up recycling programs to municipalities all over the country and internationally. You know that little triangle with a number inside that we use to identify recyclables? That was Milly’s doing.
Christine Thomas will be the third inductee this year. As the first female tenured full professor in the College, Christine now serves as Dean of the College of Natural Resources at UW-Stevens Point. She is a founding member of the Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) Program which has grown to be an international movement. She has served on the boards and councils of many conservation organizations and governmental agencies and currently serves as Vice-Chair of the federal Wildlife and Hunting Heritage Conservation Council and as a national Director of Ducks Unlimited.
The Induction Ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 22, at Sentry Theater in Stevens Point. A coffee reception will be held at 9 a.m., followed by a luncheon at 12:30 p.m. For more details and to register.
The WCHF inductees this year reflect the important role of conservation organizations, universities, governments and industries, and most significantly, the contributions of women to conservation and environmental quality in Wisconsin and nationally.