Target: David Gordon, Executive Director of the Goldman Environmental Foundation
Goal: Recognize the incredible contributions of the 2014 Goldman Prize honorees
Each year grassroots environmental activists from around the globe are honored with the prestigious Goldman Prize. Now in its 25th year, the Goldman Prize recognizes “individuals for [their] sustained and significant efforts to protect and enhance the natural environment, often at great personal risk.” The dedication of this year’s recipients has helped safeguard the well-being 0f communities, sensitive ecosystems and endangered species across four continents.
The honorees’ achievements are each worthy of high praise. Ramesh Agrawal of India helped villagers prevent a large proposed coal mine from opening in their area. Ruth Buendia Mestoquiari of Peru lead the indigenous Asháninka people in a campaign against massive and destructive dams. Desmond D’Sa of South Africa organized diverse communities to shut down a toxic waste dump. Russia’s Suren Gazaryan helped expose corruption behind the illegal use of protected forestland. Rudi Putra of Indonesia worked to protect the critically endangered Sumatran rhino and its forest habitat from palm oil plantations. Helen Holden Slottje of the United States rallied towns across New York to pass local bans on high-polluting oil fracking operations.
David Gordon, Executive Director of the Goldman Environmental Foundation, proclaims that these incredible individuals “are not only tackling some of the world’s most pressing environmental problems; they are also achieving impressive environmental victories and inspiring others to do the same.” Applaud the Foundation for helping spread awareness of their success in the face of incredible odds.
Dear Mr. Gordon,
For a quarter century the Goldman Environmental Foundation has helped spread the word about the contributions of brave and dedicated activists around the world. This year’s honorees are no exception. Each of them has achieved success despite daunting odds, battling corporations all too happy to sacrifice the health of the natural world in order to increase their profits.
The Goldman Prize is unique in many respects. It provides $175,000 to each honoree to support their work–the largest award for environmental activism. Winners are selected from all regions of the world, helping draw attention to a variety of environmental issues not covered by the mainstream press. And perhaps most importantly the Goldman Prize is awarded for grassroots activism, which your website describes as “local efforts, where positive change is created through community or citizen participation in the issues that affect them.”
I am grateful for all the contributions of this year’s honorees. May their ongoing work, and that of previous and future Goldman Prize winners, continue to inspire others to protect the environment we all depend on for survival.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Achmad Rabin Taim via Flickr