JUNE 27, 2016–Glen Ellen, CA – Audubon Canyon Ranch (ACR), a leader in conservation science, habitat preservation, and nature education, announced today that sisters Katy and Sara Tracy, 2016 graduates of Windsor High School, have received the David Bouverie Scholarship, awarded June 7 at Bouverie Preserve.

The David Bouverie Scholarship Fund was established in memory of Glen Ellen resident Phyllis Ellman, a longtime ACR Board member and "founding mother" of the Bouverie Preserve Environmental Education Program, for which she served as a docent from 1980 until her death in 2009. The scholarship fund provides academic scholarships to participants of the Bouverie Junior Naturalist Program, called Junipers, who remain involved through high school and plan to pursue higher education in the sciences or environmental education.

“Katy and Sara Tracy are exceptional young women who have contributed countless hours of volunteer service and been energetic ambassadors of the Bouverie Preserve during their eight years in the Juniper program,” said Jeanne Wirka, ACR’s Director of Stewardship. “The David Bouverie Scholarship Committee is confident Katy and Sara will continue to inspire the next generation of conservationists.” Dedication to stewardship and environmental education runs in the Tracy family. All four Tracy siblings have participated in the Juniper program and in 2012 Katy and Sara’s brother Nick was awarded the scholarship. During its award ceremony earlier this month, the committee presented a certificate of commendation to their parents, Mark and Sheryl, for outstanding support and service to the Juniper program.

Both Tracy sisters will attend UC Davis in the fall, Katy will be studying Cognitive Science, and Sara will be studying biochemistry and molecular Biology.

Sara and Katy began in the Juniper program when they were in the fifth grade, initially participating in the field-based natural history training, and later serving as peer mentors to younger students. They continued their involvement through the twelfth grade, leading Guided Nature Walks, assisting our science staff in research projects, creating a Bouverie Preserve nature guide for iNaturalist, and mentoring other high school students in our summer science camps.  

In 2015, Katy and Sara were invited to serve as summer interns, a program generously funded by Keysight Technologies Foundation. “The summer interns support the Bouverie resident biologist by conducting field research, preparing scientific specimens, entering data from the newt count and other field studies,” said Wirka.

“The Bouverie Preserve is known as a hub for nature education, a place where students learn about nature and science,” said Sara Tracy. “But Bouverie became so much more to us. It’s a place where we were able to be ourselves, get excited about spiders and fungus, and really just love science. We have made friends here and enjoyed support from the staff and docents.”

“We have had so many amazing opportunities, such as interning for (Director of Stewardship) Jeanne Wirka. Ultimately, the hands-on experience we received opened our eyes to a life in science,” Katy added.

Katy and Sara are prime examples of how ACR’s multi-faceted and multi-generational education programs can change people’s lives by encouraging their curiosity, training them in the scientific method, offering leadership opportunities, and providing financial support of their studies.

ABOUT THE SCHOLARSHIP FUND

The David Bouverie Scholarship Fund was established in 2009 with an initial grant of $25,000 from The Dennis and Carol Ann Rockey Fund of the Marin Community Foundation. Since then the Fund has doubled in size and includes more than 90 ACR contributors.

Visit http://egret.org/david_bouverie_scholarship to make an online contribution (specify “David Bouverie Scholarship Fund”), or by phone at 415-868-9244 or via check with the memo to ACR, 4900 Shoreline Highway 1, Stinson Beach, CA 94970.

ABOUT ACR

Audubon Canyon Ranch is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit environmental conservation and education organization. It was founded in 1962 to safeguard Bolinas Lagoon from irresponsible development, leading the way for the protection of Tomales Bay.

Today, Audubon Canyon Ranch acts as guardian of four main nature preserves in Marin, Sonoma and Lake counties. These 5,000 acres provide significant habitat to wildlife and have been placed in our care by generous donors to steward and protect in perpetuity. ACR works to improve global environmental health by conserving and stewarding valuable natural resources, managing for ecological resiliency, providing scientific solutions to ecosystem management, and teaching generations of conservationists in ways that strengthen natural and human communities.

Look for ACR on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. For more information, call 415-868-9244, email acr@egret.org or visit www.egret.org.  ###