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Nominations Being Taken for the 36th Annual Tawes Award Individuals and Groups Working to Better the Environment Eligible for Tawes Award, Government Employees Eligible for Coulter Award; Nomination Deadline Is April 12

BALTIMORE, MD (February 6, 2013) – Nominations are now being accepted for the 2013 Tawes Award for a Clean Environment and for the James B. Coulter Government Employee Award. The Tawes Award recognizes individuals, civic, community and non-profit groups that have demonstrated outstanding efforts to enhance Maryland’s environment over a period of time or with a single project. There are separate categories for youth and adults. The James B. Coulter Award acknowledges outstanding environmental contributions by a government employee.

The deadline for nominations for both awards is April 12. Nomination forms are available on MDE’s website, and may be submitted by email to or by mail to: Maryland Department of the Environment, Land Management Administration, 1800 Washington Boulevard, Suite 650, Baltimore MD  21230, Attention: Jennifer Hopper - Tawes Award.​​

More Information

Past project winners have included community clean-ups, school ecology or beautification projects and innovative environmental enhancements in recycling, prevention and control of hazardous materials, waste reduction and other areas.

In 2012, the Tawes and Coulter Award winners were: 

Kolby Noble - Tawes Award - Adult Category

Kolby and her students at Princess Anne Elementary, in conjunction with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, chose to improve the Bay’s health through oyster gardening. The students worked to raise 1,000 baby oysters to maturity at Janes Island State Park in Somerset County with the goal of relocating the oysters to the first official and protected oyster reef at the park.  Taking their project one step further, Kolby and her students set up a "Bayraiser" webpage, raising more than $350 for donation to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation for building oyster reefs in the Bay.

Catonsville Elementary - Tawes Award - Youth Category

Catonsville Elementary School in Baltimore County hosted an environmental festival that brought together local businesses, organizations, State agencies and families to learn about and promote environmental awareness. While working to achieve Maryland Green School status, Catonsville Elementary students are encouraged to take earth-healthy transportation such as walking or bicycling on the second Wednesday of each month and to recycle. Students also have taken part in plantings of native species of vegetation on school grounds.

Stephen Reid - James B. Coulter Government Employee Award

As project manager for the Maydale Conservation Park Stream Restoration Project in Colesville, Stephen was responsible for replacing a failing fish ladder to promote fish migration upstream, stabilizing eroded stream banks and replacing multiple pedestrian trail stream crossings with a single crossing. He was also involved in the dredging of Lake Needwood in Rock Creek Regional Park and restoring streams in Northwest Golf Course in Silver Spring.

Core Facts
  • The annual statewide environmental recognition program seeks to involve youth, adults, and private and public organizations in the restoration and protection of Maryland's natural resources. Any individual, civic, community, or non-profit entity that has demonstrated outstanding efforts to enhance Maryland's environment over a period of time or with a single project may be nominated.

  • Nominations deadline is April 12, 2013.

  • An event to recognize winners will be held in May.

  • The awards are co-sponsored by MDE, the Maryland Petroleum Council and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to recognize youngsters, adults and private and public organizations involved in the restoration and protection of Maryland’s natural resources.

  • The Tawes Award is named for J. Millard Tawes, governor of Maryland from 1959 to 1967 and the first secretary of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. He is the only Marylander elected to all three statewide offices: Comptroller, Treasurer and Governor.

  • The James B. Coulter Award, established in 2005, is named in honor of Maryland’s second Secretary of the Department of Natural Resources. 


“We encourage Marylanders to nominate their environmental heroes. This is our chance to recognize the individuals and groups making a real, lasting difference in protecting and restoring our environment – and setting an example for all of us.”

-- Robert M. Summers, Secretary, Maryland Department of the Environment

“The Maryland Petroleum Council is proud to partner with MDE and DNR to celebrate our 36th year of honoring the outstanding environmental achievements of Maryland citizens. The Tawes and Coulter Awards are a great opportunity to recognize our unsung environmental heroes - your neighbor, classmate or co-worker.” 

-- Drew Cobbs, Executive Director, Maryland Petroleum Council

"These awards are presented to hard working men, women and youth in our State who go above and beyond in protecting our most valued natural resources. I encourage all Marylanders who know someone who has done this selfless work to submit a nomination."

-- John R. Griffin, Secretary, Maryland Department of Natural Resources

Additional Information

Samantha Kappalman

Jay Apperson


MDE Mission
Our mission is to protect and restore the quality of Maryland's air, water and land resources, while fostering smart growth, a thriving and sustainable economy and healthy communities.