Keep Martin Beautiful Finds Environmental Heroes in Local Governments

Posted on June 2, 2024


Tiffany Kincaid
Keep Martin Beautiful, Executive Director

Keep Martin Beautiful Finds Environmental Heroes in

 Local Governments

Environmental heroes are everywhere in our community – they’re longtime residents and newcomers, students and businesses, workers and retirees, environmental activists and farmers. They’re also government employees!

When Keep Martin Beautiful does its call for Environmental Stewardship Award nominations, we look for people and projects that go above and beyond in their service to the environment. We’re always pleasantly surprised by the quality and quantity of nominated projects that are designed, implemented, managed, or sustained by Martin County and City of Stuart employees.

Just this year alone, we had nominations for five City of Stuart projects: their backyard composting program, their mobile environmental murals, their reverse osmosis water treatment facility, the SE Illinois Avenue living shoreline project, and the SE Mango Place drainage improvement project.

Martin County also came in strong, as always, with five projects of their own: the CRA Ripple project, the Golden Gate median compost and water conservation project, the East Fork Creek stormwater quality improvement project, the Savannas Weir project, and the Explore Natural Martin tour from the Martin County Office of Tourism & Marketing.

For 2024, Keep Martin Beautiful also created a very special new award in memory of Wendy Lee Parker. Wendy served as the Martin County Solid Waste Manager for more than twenty years. She was a cheerleader for environmental action, the mastermind behind many environmental outreach projects, and an inspiration to colleagues for what it means to be an environmental steward.  The Wendy Lee Parker Award specifically honors a government employee who, like Wendy, shows an exceptional commitment to environmental stewardship.

In 2018, Anne Hawkins presented the Recycling Champion Award to Wendy Parker. Anne admired Wendy and her sustainability efforts very much and it was especially touching that Anne received the Wendy Parker Award this year.

This year’s Wendy Lee Parker awardee is Anne Hawkins, a pivotal figure in the City of Stuart Department of Utilities and Engineering. She has consistently taken an active role in water conservation projects and coordinates the highly popular WaterFest, an annual event dedicated to water conservation and youth education.

Anne not only works hard for the city, but has served on the Keep Martin Beautiful Board of Directors since 2015 and is leaving a legacy for the future. She’s an incredible go-to resource for any student inquiry about environmental sustainability and she’s always eager to motivate students to care and to act on behalf of the environment.

Keep Martin Beautiful congratulates Anne Hawkins, our very first Wendy Lee Parker award honoree, and also every government employee who in large ways or small takes a personal stake in environmental stewardship.

To read more about Anne and the other 2024 Keep Martin Beautiful Environmental Stewardship nominees, visit And keep your eyes open for the good work from the environmental heroes among us.

Tiffany Kincaid's opinions are her own and may not reflect Friends & Neighbors viewpoint.


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