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Whidbey resident wins Coastal Volunteer of the Year award
Jill Hein is the newest recipient of the Jan Holmes Island County Coastal Volunteer of the Year award for 2014.
The award honors the work of volunteers who protect and restore marine waters and coastal resources of Island County. She was presented the award Saturday, Feb. 1 at Oak Harbor High School.
The namesake of the award, Jan Holmes, was an Island County resident and Washington State University Island County Beach Watcher known for her work as a marine scientist, educator and steward of the marine environment. The award is co-sponsored by the Island County Marine Recourses Committee and WSU Island County Extension. This is the fourth year the award has been given.
Hein was nominated by another volunteer who called her a “powerful environmental advocate and educator,” according to a news release.
“She represents the best in a local resident as a steward of the coastal environment; she takes personal responsibility, teaches others and does the work. She is a champion for learning, sharing and translating knowledge into action.”
Hein has volunteered as an Island County Beach Watcher since 2005 and has recorded more than 7,000 hours volunteering. She also gives her time to other environmental groups including Whidbey Audubon Society, Coastal Observation, Pigeon Guillemot Research Survey team and Seabird Survey Team, the Orca Network and the Central Puget Sound Marine Stranding Network.
Hein has worked on several projects including the Eel Grass Monitoring Project, the “Problem with Plastics” brochure and the Monofilament Recovery and Recycling Program for Whidbey Island.