With less than one year to go before the 2006 elections, all three declared Gubernatorial candidates are invited to address the critical environmental issues facing our state at this annual gathering of conservationists. WYPR Radio host Marc Steiner will act as emcee.
In addition, with environmental issues a leading concern among voters, most Senatorial and Congressional--as well as statewide and legislative candidates--are expected to attend this annual event, which brings together conservation leaders and activists from across the state. Every announced candidate for statewide office has been invited.
“This event will again affirm just how important healthy air, clean water, and land conservation are to Marylanders,” said Susan Brown, Maryland LCV executive director, in a prepared statement to the press. “[We screen] the candidates to give the truth behind the political spin. In the spirit of one of our founders, the John Kabler Award Event will raise money and awareness to help the Maryland LCV give the environment a powerful voice in 2006 and beyond.”
More than 250 state and national conservation leaders, elected officials and citizens will attend the event. Guests include Senate President Mike Miller, Speaker of the House Michael Busch, former Governor Parris Glendening, and former Congressman Kweisi Mfume. Expected to speak are County Executive Doug Duncan and Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley. Invited to speak is Governor Robert Ehrlich.
“We are especially happy this year to honor Maryland’s Chesapeake Waterkeepers,” Ms. Brown said. “The Waterkeepers work across our state-- rom the Coastal Bays to the mountains--to clean up our waterways through their own brand of on-the-water citizen-based advocacy. Recent efforts to safeguard Maryland’s Critical Areas law is just another example of how the Waterkeepers look out for Maryland’s waterways, communities, and people.”
Who Are The Chesapeake Waterkeepers?
Maryland’s Chesapeake Waterkeepers are, according to Ms. Brown, "the eyes, ears, and voices protecting our waters." Part of the international Waterkeeper Alliance, they help protect and restore the Chesapeake Bay river by river, working locally within their communities through grassroots action and advocacy to protect communities and their waters. They also work regionally to share resources. Waterkeepers foster citizen-based enforcement of environmental laws in the Chesapeake Bay region. On November 29th the Maryland LCV will honor the following: Anacostia Riverkeeper, Assateague Coastkeeper, Chester Riverkeeper, Patapsco Riverkeeper, Lower Susquehanna Riverkeeper, Patuxent Riverkeeper, Potomac Riverkeeper, Severn Riverkeeper, South Riverkeeper, and the West/Rhode Riverkeeper.
John V. Kabler (1942-1996), motivated to act on behalf of the environment in the wake of the Three Mile Island crisis in the late 1970s, inspired a handful of his environmental colleagues to become active in political campaigns. Together they founded the Maryland League of Conservation Voters in 1979. Until his death in 1996, Kabler was a key leader of the Maryland conservation movement.
Past recipients of the John V. Kabler Memorial award include Governor Parris Glendening, U.S. Senator Paul Sarbanes, Maryland Senator Brian Frosh, and EPA Administrator Russell Train.
The Maryland League of Conservation Voters serves as a nonpartisan political voice of the state’s environmental community by holding officials accountable through scorecards, advocating for sound conservation policies and promoting environmentally responsible candidates for public office. The Maryland LCV seeks to make environmental protection and restoration a top priority for the state’s elected officials, political candidates and voters.
This story was published on November 29, 2005.