Greg Harber presented first Birmingham Audubon Yellowhammer Award

Birmingham Audubon
Photo of Birmingham Audubon’s Greg Harber. Photo courtesy of Birmingham Audubon.

This week, the Birmingham Audubon Society presented beloved birder and tireless conservationist Greg Harber with their inaugural Yellowhammer Award.

The new award recognizes members who have gone above and beyond to promote conservation and a greater knowledge of birds, their habitats, and the natural world. The honoree exemplifies the spirit of Birmingham Audubon, and remind  people what’s possible when hard work and passion meet.

Harber has been a member of Birmingham Audubon for over thirty years. He has introduced hundreds of people to the joy of birds and birding.

At the ceremony presenting the Yellowhammer Award, Birmingham Audubon President Joe Watts best described Harber stating,  “For many people in our community, he is birding, an exemplar of kindness and attentiveness and the best of what the Audubon movement has to offer.”

Photo of Greg Harber teaching birding at Caldwell Park to a young student. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now.
Other honorees

Birmingham Audubon also presented Home Run Construction with their first Community Partner Award. They specifically recognized the efforts of  Project Manager, Chris Pribyl who managed the construction and installation of the chimney swift tower at the McWane Science Center. The chimney swift tower project is part of the Urban Bird Habitat Initiative that started in 2015 with the tower design contest in partnership with the Birmingham Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

Additionally, Birmingham Audubon honored Roopa Nash for their Emerging Leader Award. A teacher at Hilltop Montessori School and participant in the Citizen Science Corps, Nash is also serving as chair of Audubon’s Junior Board.

Birmingham Alabama
Painted Bunting – photo by Ken Hare
New Executive Director

Birmingham Audubon did make make one final announcement at the membership meeting, the hiring of their new Executive Director Ansel Payne. A native of West Virginia, Payne formerly served as Birmingham Audubon’s Teaching Naturalist and Outreach Director. A lifelong naturalist, he holds degrees from Harvard and Tufts, as well as a PhD in Comparative Biology from the American Museum of Natural History.

Pat Byington
Pat Byington

Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.

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