Skip to main content

Annual WCC award recipients

Wisconsin Conservation Congress

Each year the Wisconsin Conservation Congress recognizes individuals and organizations who have dedicated themselves and their time to the conservation of Wisconsin's natural resources. These awards are intended to acknowledge the hard work, exemplary leadership and commitment of these individuals and groups to continuing our outdoor legacy for generations to come.

Award nomination form

2024 Statewide, Local Organization/ Educator Nomination Form

2024 DNR Staff Nomination Form

Statewide groups

Statewide conservation organizations

The "Statewide Conservation Organization of the Year Award" is intended to recognize Wisconsin conservation organizations that dedicate themselves to conservation education activities, habitat enhancement, recreation activities, outdoor recreation access and projects throughout the state to help maintain Wisconsin's natural resources and environment.

Year Organization
2017 Northwoods Youth Deer Hunt Challenge Committee
2016 Wisconsin Trappers Association
2015 Shadows on the Wolf
2014 Urban Ecology Center
2013 Headwaters Muskies Inc, Chapter 12
2012 Milwaukee School of Engineering Ducks Unlimited
2011 n/a
2010 Salmon Unlimited
2009 Praire Enthusiasts

Local groups

Local conservation organizations

The "Local Conservation Club of the Year Award" is intended to recognize Wisconsin conservation clubs who dedicate themselves to conservation education and training, habitat enhancement, recreation activities, outdoor recreation access and local community service projects to help maintain Wisconsin's natural resources and environment.

Year Organization
2017 North Wisconsin Rod & Gun
2016 Apostle Islands Sport Fisherman's Association/ Outagamie Conservation Club
2015 Southwestern Wisconsin Chapter of the Quality Deer Management Association
2014 Bad River Watershed Association
2013 Sheboygan County Conservation Association
2012 Beaver Dam Conservationists
2011 Rusk County Wildlife Restoration Association
2010 Durand Sportsmen's Club
2009 Willow River Rod & Gun

Resource Professionals

DNR staff recognition

Each year the WCC recognizes department staff members that have done an outstanding job of advancing Wisconsin's conservation and natural resource management initiative, for their dedication and exemplary work in the natural resources arena. These recipients are chosen by the WCC Executive Committee based on the Congress' knowledge of their work along with nominations from their co-workers/supervisors.

The Waterfowl Officer of the Year award is given by the WCC Migratory Committee each year to a state or federal officer who has shown leadership, dedication and professionalism through their work and outreach programs relating to waterfowl.

Year Outstanding DNR Professional Award Waterfowl Officer Other Recognition
Year Wildlife Specialist/Technician Fisheries Specialist/Technician Law Enforcement Officer Waterfowl Officer Other Recognition


Educator of the year

The "Conservation Educator of the Year Award" is intended to recognize Wisconsin conservationists who dedicate themselves to educating others about the wise use and conservation of Wisconsin's natural resources and environment. Through this award, the Conservation Congress recognizes the many hours of service, the number of individuals who have been impacted and the numerous programs which have been developed by Wisconsin's conservation educators.

Year Recipient
2017 n/a
2016 A. Jim Heffner
2015 Chuck Strysick
2014 Trent Tonn
2013 Terri Roehrig
2012 Cathy Chybowski
2011 Christine Jumbeck
2010 Mike Reiter
2009 Dave Tupa

Delegate of the year

David A. Ladd delegate of the year award

Four years ago we initiated an annual award for a Congress delegate who, during the past year performed a level of service above and beyond whatever his or her station with the Congress requires. We had in mind to acknowledge people like David A. Ladd. Other than one year as Secretary of the Congress, Dave was never on the Executive Committee. He was the stalwart Chair of the Big Game Committee. However, he constantly represented us on statewide committees, testified for us at hearings and chaired many special committees. While never asking for recognition, the product of his hard work put the Congress in the best possible standing with those outside the Congress, and his presence and demeanor contributed largely to our credibility with all of those who he worked with.

The David A. Ladd delegate of the year award is given to a delegate who embodies the ideals of the Congress and works to improve this organization, is dedicated to the conservation of our natural resources and continuing our outdoor heritage, and has selflessly served the people of Wisconsin through countless hours of dedicated service.

Year Recipient
2017 Dave Mabie, Gary Mabie
2016 Douglas Burrows
2015 Edgar Harvey
2014 Michael Rogers
2013 James Burmeister
2012 Dale Maas
2011 Mike Riggle
2010 John Edelblute
2009 Lee Fahrney