Register receives Outstanding Conservation Educator Award

Published 2:45 pm Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Kathleen “Katie” Register accepted the Outstanding Conservation Educator award at the Piedmont Soil and Water Conservation District’s annual award banquet held at the Amelia Baptist Church on Feb. 23. 

Register is executive director of Clean Virginia Waterways, a statewide, nonprofit agency affiliated with Longwood University dedicated to citizen stewardship of Virginia’s waters. With a small staff she coordinates and participates in environmental awareness events for people of all ages, and initiates innovative programs when a need is recognized in the community.

In 1972 the astronauts aboard Apollo 17 took the first pictures of Earth from space, noting that the blue sphere, covered by oceans, resembles a blue marble.  Since then, a blue marble has a come to be a tangible reminder of the Earth and our reliance on clean water. At the end of every outreach activity, Register hands each participant a blue marble as a reminder to act in Earth’s behalf. The award banquet was no exception, as Register handed a blue marble to each person attending.

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Register coordinates cleanup activities throughout Virginia for the annual Ocean Conservancy’s International Cleanup, the world’s largest coordinated volunteer effort to cleanup beaches and waterways, collect data and raise awareness about the impacts trash has on wildlife.

Register is a nationally recognized leader in litter prevention educational programming, litter research and marine debris solution development. Clean Virginia Waterways was one of the lead authors of the Virginia Marine Debris Reduction Plan. Virginia is the first state on the east coast to have a plan in place to reduce this form of water pollution. 

Register has been a member of the Virginia Water Monitoring Council since its inception in 1999 and currently serves as vice president of the council. She has served on numerous advisory boards and councils and currently serves on the Farmville Tree Board. She is a consultant in environmental and educational program development, speaks locally and nationally on conservation issues and has published several articles.