Yosemite National Park announced the 2017 recipients of the park’s Volunteer of the Year awards, given annually to outstanding volunteers in nine different categories for exemplary service in the park. This award ceremony is held on National Public Lands Day each year, as part of the annual Yosemite Facelift park-wide cleanup event.
“Park volunteers are a critical component of the Yosemite community. They help restore trails, provide information to visitors, assist with Preventive Search and Rescue, and much more,” said Acting Superintendent Chip Jenkins. “We are proud to honor these outstanding volunteers who share their time, talent, passion, and help preserve and protect Yosemite National Park.”
These awards were presented in person at a special awards ceremony in Yosemite Valley that coincided with the Yosemite Facelift and National Public Lands Day, Sept. 30.
The 2017 award recipients are:
☆ Jerel Steckling, Yosemite Conservancy, Individual Volunteer of the Year
☆ Meryl Kruskopf, Yosemite’s Visitor Use Impact Monitoring Program, Individual Youth Volunteer of the Year
☆ Mona Knight, Yosemite Conservancy, Enduring Volunteer of the Year, having accumulated 25 years of volunteer service in Yosemite
☆ The Little Yosemite Valley Interns, Volunteer Group of the Year
☆ Building Bridges to the Outdoors, a chapter of the Sierra Club, Youth Volunteer Group of the Year
☆ Paul Rogers, Yosemite Archivist, Volunteer Supervisor of the Year
☆ The Desk Officer Program, Yosemite Volunteer Program of the Year
☆ Carrie Anderson, NatureBridge Stewardship Instructor of the Year
☆ Allyson Gunsallus, Yosemite Climbing Association, Facelift Volunteer of the Year
In 2016, YNP hosted 12,394 volunteers who donated more than167,000 hours of work to the park.