Conservation Achievement Scholarship


The Illinois Conservation Foundation is pleased to announce this year’s recipients of the 2014 Conservation Achievement Scholarships. These prestigious awards were given to Kenneth Bielski of Rockton and Alex Handel of Sycamore. Each of these students will receive $2,000.00 to apply to specified expenses at the two- or four-year college or university of their choice.

Kenneth Bielski is a prime example of a conservation leader, donating many hours of his time to perform positive actions for Illinois’ natural resources. He volunteers at the Hoo Haven Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center, the Welty Environmental Center and the Natural Lands Institute and has done so for several years. He has worked on projects to educate adults and children as well as performing natural lands restoration and wildlife rehabilitation activities.

Alex Handel has made a dedicated, long-term effort to preserve and protect the Illinois environment. He is a “Leave No Trace” trainer and volunteers with the Russell Woods Forest Preserve and the Kishwaukee Watershed Management Program. He has participated in prairie seed collections and restorations, tree-planting activities, trails work, educational efforts and community planning.   

The Conservation Achievement Scholarships have been awarded since 2005. In the ten years of this program’s existence, 59 scholarships worth a total value of $90,000 have been distributed. Generous donations to the Illinois Conservation Foundation from numerous organizations and individuals make this program possible.