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For February 2, 2009

Jennifer Lamb, NOLS, (307) 335-2262

Former NOLS Instructor Receives 2009 Stewardship Award

LANDER. WYO - This Saturday, October 10th, at the school’s annual gathering in Lander, the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) will present its 2009 Stewardship Award to Greg Dotson, a former field instructor for the school. Greg taught wilderness courses in the Wind River and Absaroka Ranges in the mid-1990s. In 1995, Greg carried his law degree and passion for wild places to Capitol Hill, where he went to work as a Congressional staff member on environmental issues.

NOLS honors Greg for the leadership he has provided to recent efforts by Congress to pass climate change legislation. For thirteen years, Greg has worked behind the scenes on environmental issues on the Hill. He has toiled long hours with little recognition to improve policy and legislation that helps protect air quality and other natural resources in this country. This past spring, Greg’s leadership helped ensure the crafting of a strong climate protection bill that not only met the expectations of the administration, but garnered enough votes to pass the House in June, with the aim of reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050.

While the Senate has yet to pass a bill, the leadership Greg showed to bring the legislation this far is worthy of recognition. Said NOLS Executive Director, John Gans, “Greg’s leadership and commitment to this process are an inspiration to all of us who care about wild places. We are so impressed with what he has accomplished and so grateful for his dedication to finding long-term solutions to climate change.” Though the Stewardship Award traditionally has focused on one NOLS operating area at a time, Greg’s work takes a giant step toward protecting air quality, forest ecology and overall ecosystem health in NOLS classrooms all over the world. The scope and potential of this legislative initiative are truly remarkable and Greg’s efforts to help pass it through the House are equally so.

NOLS initiated the Stewardship Award in 1990 to recognize land managers and individuals who have demonstrated exceptional stewardship of the wild lands entrusted to their care. The school understands the important role that managers play as stewards of NOLS’ backcountry classrooms and recognizes that, with shrinking budgets and increasing demands on public land, these are challenging times. We seek to celebrate those individuals who excel in spite of the challenge.

Founded in 1965 by legendary mountaineer Paul Petzoldt, the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) is the leader in wilderness education and sets the industry standard for responsible, high-quality educational expeditions. NOLS provides an awe-inspiring, transformative experience that develops active, positive leaders with lifelong environmental ethics and outdoor skills to more than 10,000 students each year. A private nonprofit school, NOLS runs courses from 10 days to a full academic year in length on five continents. NOLS students, ages 14 to over 70, explore the most remote wilderness the Rocky Mountains, Idaho, Pacific Northwest, Southwest, Alaska, Western Canada, Mexico, Patagonia (Chile), India, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, and Scandinavia have to offer. College credit and scholarships are available. For more information, call NOLS at (800) 710-NOLS (6657) or visit the web site at


The National Outdoor Leadership School International Headquarters in Lander, Wyoming.
Photo: Brad Christensen
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