Illinois Conservation Foundation to Honor Conservation Leaders

Chris Young
Illinois Conservation Foundation to Honor Conservation Leaders
SPRINGFIELD, IL – With a focus on youth conservation education, the Illinois Conservation Foundation is honoring leaders who set an example in conservation leadership. These awards will be presented at the annual Illinois Conservation Foundation Gala at the Hilton Indian Lakes Resort in Bloomingdale on Sept. 24.

In recognition for their efforts in making youth fishing a reality at the ICF’s Torstenson Youth Conservation Education Center, three Youth Conservation Leader awards will be presented. The Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Foundation, the Louise Y. Mokadam and Family Foundation and Jim Grandt from Grandt Industries all played leading roles in a fishing pond for children to experience the thrill of catching and learning about fish. Each made significant donations to help create this pond and provide kids with a great experience. 

“We didn’t have a fishing pond on our property until this year,” said Illinois Conservation Foundation Board Chairman Wayne Rosenthal. “Having a pond, where kids have a chance for hands-on experience catching bluegill, bass and catfish is such an important part of our programming and we couldn’t have done this without support from these great friends.”

In order to inspire the next generation of conservation leaders, the ICF is also recognizing the Great Escape as a Small Business Conservation Leader. This restaurant in Schiller Park, IL has become a leader in the use of clean energy by constructing a wind turbine on the property. While a very costly project, this turbine provides all of the electric power for the business. Business owner Brian Great believes in doing his part for a cleaner environment and hopes to inspire others to follow with alternative energy efforts of their own.

In addition to these awards, the ICF will also be inducting the 2015 Illinois Outdoors Hall of Fame class when Elizabeth Bramsen, Fred Keck and Chad Pregracke are honored.

Illinois Conservation Foundation Gala Information
Proceeds from the annual ICF Gala, scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 24 at the Hilton Indian Lakes Resort in Bloomingdale, help “turn screen time into green time” for children across the state by supporting youth conservation education.

“This year’s gala not only celebrates the newest class of the Hall of Fame, but also recognizes the selfless work of several supporters of conservation and youth education initiatives,” said Eric Schmidt, ICF Executive Director. “It’s also our largest fundraiser of the year and helps raise money for these youth programs.”

For reservations or more information on the Illinois Conservation Foundation Gala, contact the Illinois Conservation Foundation, One Natural Resources Way, Springfield, IL 62702-1271, phone 217/785-2003, or check the ICF web site at

The ICF is an IRS 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit corporation established in 1995 to support the programs of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.  The ICF inspires today’s youth – tomorrow’s leaders – by providing quality outdoor education and programs that instill interest in conservation, ecology and sustainability.  Contributions are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
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