Media Advisory: National Invasive Species Awareness Week Events

Media Advisory: National Invasive Species Awareness Week Events

Federal, State, Tribal and Local officials to attend; All Meetings and Events Open to the Public

Contact:  Hilary Smith DOI (202) 208-4103
Department of Interior

Hilda Diaz-Soltero USDA (202) 412-0478
US Department of Agriculture

WASHINGTON, DC – Next week, state, federal, tribal and local officials, along with representatives of the private sector and environmental groups, will participate in a week of events, briefings and workshops to discuss national and regional invasive species issues as part of this year’s National Invasive Species Awareness Week (Feb. 23 to 28, 2015) coordinated by the National Invasive Species Council.  All events are open to the public.

On Wednesday morning, Administrator for Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services Kevin Shea and Deputy Assistant Secretary of Policy and International Affairs at the Interior Lori Faeth will officially launch National Invasive Species Awareness Week 2015 at an awards ceremony and information fair hosted by the Department of Agriculture.

Partnerships are crucial to successfully prevent and control invasive species. The awards ceremony recognizes nine individuals and organizations for their leadership, volunteerism, lifetime achievement and outreach and education. Award recipients include Al Cofrancesco, U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, MS; Robert McMahon, University of Texas at Arlington, TX; and Gordon Brown, retired Department of the Interior Invasive Species Coordinator, DC (Lifetime Achievement Award); Steve Kendrot, USDA-APHIS-Wildlife Services, MD and Cathy Lucero, Clallam County Noxious Weed Control Board, WA (Leadership Award); Bob Wiltshire, Invasive Species Action Network, MT and Christy Martin, Coordinating Group on Alien Pest Species, HI (Outreach  Award); Volunteers, NH LAKES Lake Host Program, NH and Mark Imlay, Mid-Atlantic Invasive Plant Council, MD (Volunteer Award).

National Invasive Species Awareness Week highlights efforts to prevent or slow the spread of invasive species—species that are both non-native to an ecosystem of concern and harmful to the environment, the economy and animal or human health.  Invasive species harm the natural environment or managed environments that are used for agriculture, aquaculture or forestry.  Invasives are the second cause of extinction of species in the United States.  Feral pigs, Asian long-horned beetles, emerald ash borer, kudzu, Asian carp, large constrictor snakes and zebra or quagga mussels are just a few examples of invasive species.
 
The agenda and locations and times of events in Washington, DC and other locations around the country are available at www.nisaw.org   Highlights of the week include:

  • Invasive Species Awards Ceremony (9 to 10 AM on Wednesday, February 25 at USDA Patio, Whitten Building, 12th and Jefferson Drive, SW)
  • Invasive Species Fair of agencies and organizations (10 AM to noon on Wednesday, February 25 at USDA Patio, Whitten Building, 12th and Jefferson Drive, SW)
  • Reception on Capitol Hill (6 to 8 PM on Wednesday February 25,  at the Hart Senate Office Building Room 902, The U.S. Capitol Complex)
  • Invasive Species Day (Noon to 3 PM on Saturday February 28 at the Smithsonian National Natural History Museum, 10th and Constitution Ave.)
  • National Association of Plant Councils Webinars and Southern Integrated Pest Management Center Webinars (Monday, February 23 through Friday February 27, via Internet)

Events are free but registration is requested at http://nisaw.org/. Please visit the NISAW website for other events outside of Washington, DC.  

A broad coalition of groups are supporting and sponsoring the NISAW events including federal and state agencies, professional organizations and representatives from the private sector and environmental groups.

####

USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).

Complementary Content
${loading}