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Rooney receives Eagle Award

Former congressman honored for work on conservation issues

By Staff | Jan 29, 2021

Rob Moher, president and CEO of the Conservancy of Southwest Florida (left), presents the Eagle Award to retired Rep. Francis Rooney. / Photo provided

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida has bestowed its highest honor, the Eagle Award, on retiring U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney.

The award recognizes Rooney’s work on science-based conservation priorities, including efforts to ensure continued funding of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan, bringing federal resources to bear on water quality issues in the region, advocating for elimination of subsidies to sugar growers polluting area waters and the Everglades and promoting science-based climate change policy recommendations.

“Congressman Rooney has been highly accessible to our staff and has worked to advance critical conservation priorities in our region consistently for the past four years,” said Rob Moher, president and CEO of the Conservancy of Southwest Florida. “Through unanimous consent of the staff, nominating committee and full Board of Directors, we selected Congressman Rooney in recognition of his effective federal representation in our region, the strongest in decades.”

Rooney’s top congressional priorities included extending the moratorium on offshore drilling in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico and fully funding the projects contained in the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) to protect and restore the Lake Okeechobee watershed.

The Conservancy’s Eagle Award is the highest award presented to the individual or group whose work and actions protect the natural environment and quality of life in Southwest Florida.

Board Chair Van Williams said “Congressman Rooney has set a high bar for others to follow when it comes to the pursuit of conservation priorities that benefit not only our environment, but all the residents of Southwest Florida. We are pleased to be able to recognize his dedication and commitment to protecting our water quality, our Everglades and our quality of life.”