Perspectives Online

Braswell is Conservationist of the Year

Wildlife Federation presented Alvin Braswell, curator of herpetology at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences, its Wildlife Conservationist of the Year award in the 2006 Governor's Conservation Awards Achievement Program. These are the highest natural resource honors in the state. The Wildlife Conservationist of the Year award is given annually to an individual who achieves outstanding accomplishments in the management, study or restoration of wildlife, fisheries or habitat.

According to NCWF Awards Committee Chair Eddie Nickens, Braswell was selected "for his lifelong dedication to herpetology conservation in the state and for specific actions that provided a foundation for the protection of turtles as well as venomous snakes."

Braswell, who earned his bachelor's degree in wildlife and master's in zoology from N.C. State University, has worked for the museum since 1968. He says his exploration of the wilds near his boyhood home in Union County and extensive contact with other people who love the outdoors have continually promoted a strong personal conservation ethic and a determination to convince others to practice the same.

"Finding natural wonders, showing them to others and seeing delighted amazement on their faces are very rewarding," Braswell says. "Knowledge promotes appreciation, which makes conservation possible. Well informed management of our natural resources saves species, promotes a strong and durable economy and provides a healthier and more enjoyable world to live in."