Each year, the Fairfax County Environmental Excellence Awards recognize individuals, organizations, businesses and county employees who:
- Advance or support the county's environmental goals and policy statements
- Dedicate personal time and expertise beyond normal fiscal or civic responsibilities
- Demonstrate leadership as a role model for others
The call for nominations for the 2022 Environmental Excellence Awards is now closed. Award winners will be announced in the fall of 2022. The nomination period for the 2023 Environmental Excellence Awards will likely open in late spring of 2023.
The awards are administered by the Environmental Quality Advisory Council with support from the Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination. If you have questions about the awards or the nomination process, please contact the Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination at 703-324-7136, TTY 711.
The 2021 Environmental Excellence Awards were announced on November 9, 2021 and included three individual county residents, one organization, and two county employees.
The 2021 Environmental Excellence Award recipients are:
Individual County Resident Awards:
- Debra Ann Jacobson (posthumous)
- Jennifer Pradas
- Senator Scott Surovell
- Reston Community Center
County Employee Awards:
- Suzanne Foster
- Sarah King
An incredible advocate and leader, Debra passed away in September 2021. She receives the 2021 Environmental Excellence Award posthumously. Debra was a tireless volunteer and a passionate voice within the Fairfax County community, calling for better environmental policies and practices. She served as a member of the Fairfax County Environmental Quality Advisory Council and was a member of both the legislative and executive committees of the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter. Debra’s career took her from Capitol Hill to the Department of Energy, to The George Washington University where she was co-director of the GW Solar Institute and an adjunct professor of law. She brought her expertise and experience to bear in her volunteer work, to the benefit of the Board of Supervisors and countless county residents.
Jennifer is a longtime volunteer with the Fairfax County Park Authority’s Invasive Management Area program and has dedicated well over 1,000 hours to the betterment of local green spaces such as Borge Street Park and Blake Lane Park. Specifically, she was instrumental in a campaign to save Blake Lane Park from proposed development. Her commitment to helping native plants and trees thrive through the removal of invasive species is remarkable and she shares her passion with others consistently. Jennifer works in the parks with youth groups, such as Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops, and leads advocacy campaigns to ensure the long-term preservation of open spaces for public enjoyment.
In the 2020 legislative session, Senator Surovell was involved with or responsible for several key pieces of environmental legislation, including a bill to ban fracking for natural gas anywhere east of Interstate 95 in the Commonwealth of Virginia and legislation that will ensure Virginia builds out critical energy storage infrastructure by adding 2,700 megawatts of storage by 2030. Senator Surovell was recognized as a 2020 Legislative Hero by the Virginia League of Conservation Voters and was named state legislator of the year by the Virginia State Parks Association.
In 2020, the Reston Community Center (RCC) unveiled a completely renovated aquatics center, replacing the aging infrastructure of the original pool with two new pools and other physical improvements. This $5.5 million project incorporated a number of environmentally friendly features, consistent with RCC’s commitment to environmental stewardship. More than 177 tons of construction materials were recycled over the course of the project, natatorium-rated LED light fixtures were installed, and the HVAC and pool systems were replaced with more efficient equipment. This project is in addition to other, ongoing RCC environmental initiatives such as multiyear LED lighting replacement project. RCC also hosted its first-ever Green Reston event in 2021, bringing the community together for outdoor activities related to sustainability.
A talented landscape architect with the Fairfax County Stormwater Planning Division, Suzy has led and contributed to numerous projects throughout the county since 2014. In 2020, she helped to guide the design of the Herrity Fountain retrofit project, which won first place in the 2021 Chesapeake Stormwater Network Best BMP (Best Management Practice) in the Bay Award, Retrofit Category. The project, which overhauled a malfunctioning fountain on the Fairfax County Government Center campus, deployed over 5,000 native perennial forbs, grasses, shrubs, and trees. The project features a rainwater harvesting system that incorporates crushed recycled glass from the county’s “Purple Can Club.” The retrofit enhances water quality, increases green space, and showcases emerging green technologies.
As a counselor and therapist at a residential treatment facility for adolescent females involved with the county’s Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court, Sarah expanded an existing garden plot with vegetables and herbs, developed a composting program, and created a wildflower garden in collaboration with the residents. Apart from coordinating the physical, logistical, and financial aspects of these three projects, which fall outside of the duties of her job description, Sarah inspired the young residents to learn how to care for plants and to manage waste responsibly. Her efforts gave the young women in residence a place to reflect quietly or to vent their frustration while weeding and digging. These actions were especially meaningful over the past year as many of the residents were unable to see their families or take outings due to the pandemic.
The Environmental Excellence Awards are granted in up to four categories: Individual/County Resident, Organization, Business, and County Employee.
Individual Award: Sara Holtz
Individual Award: Delegate Mark Keam
Individual Award: Meghan Walker
Business Award: Freddie Mac
County Employee Award: Vickie Anglin
Individual Award: Catherine Ledec
Individual Award: Helen Stevens
Organization Award: Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions
Organization Award: Reston Annual State of the Environment (RASER) Working Group
County Employee Award: James Hart
County Employee Award: Noel Kaplan
Individual Award: Jennifer Cole
Individual Award: Betsy Martin and Paul Siegel
Organization Award: Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts
County Employee Award: Sally Carter
County Employee Award: Judy Fincham and Danielle Wynne
Individual Award: Glenda Booth
Individual Award: Jim McGlone
Organization Award: Mason Neck Lions Club
Organization Award: McLean Citizens Association's Environment, Parks, and Recreation Committee and Churchill Road Elementary School
Business Award: The MITRE Corporation
County Employee Award: Robert Aaront
County Employee Award: Kambiz Agazi
Individual Award: John Houser
Individual Award: Randy Sayles
Organization Award: ReBuild Warehouse
Organization Award: Town of Vienna Community Enhancement Commission
Business Award: Booz Allen Hamilton
Business Award: Freddie Mac
County Employee Award: Katherine Edwards
County Resident Award: Duane DeBruyne
County Resident Award: Stephen Robinson
Organization Award: Friends of Accotink Creek
Organization Award: McLean Trees Foundation
County Resident Award: John DeNoyer and Ann Csonka (posthumous)
Organization Award: Potomac Environmental Research and Education Center, George Mason University
Business Award: Davis, Carter, Scott Ltd
Business Award: Guernsey Office Products
County Employee Award: Joyce Doughty
County Resident Award: Alan Ford
Organization Award: Herndon Environmental Network
Business Award: Burgundy Farm Country Day School
Business Award: Potomac Vegetable Farms
County Employee Award: Sean Duffy
County Employee Award: Randall G. Miller
County Resident Award: Elaine Tholen
County Resident Award: Betsy Washington
Organization Award: ServiceSource
Business Award: Walker's Grill
County Employee Award: Ron Tuttle
Organization Award: Fairfax County Restoration Project
Organization Award: Fairfax County Department of Vehicle Services
County Resident Award: Maureen Goble
Business Award: Project Performance Corporation
County Employee Award: Meghan Fellows
Organization Award: Earth Sangha
Business Award: Allen Wayne, Ltd.
County Employee Award: Carl Sivertsen
County Resident Award: Chet McLaren
Organization Award: Katherine K. Hanley Family Shelter Project Management Team
Business Award: "Jack-the-Ripper" Certified Arborists, Inc.
County Resident Award: Scott Birdwell
County Resident Award: Eleanor Quigley and Penelope Firth
Organization Award: Great Falls Citizens Association
Organization Award: Invasive Management Area Volunteers
County Employee Award: Judy Fincham
County Resident Award: Ken Andrews
Organization Award: Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District
Business Award: Wetland Studies and Solutions, Inc.
County Employee Award: Janet Rahman
County Resident Award: Ned Foster
Organization Award: Reston Association
County Resident Award: Joseph M. Chudzik
Organization Award: Students Against Global Abuse (SAGA)
County Employee Award: Noel H. Kaplan
County Resident Award: Charlie Creighton
Organization Award: Hickory Farms Community Association
County Resident Award: Chris Koerner
Organization Award: Bailey's Beautification Alliance
County Resident Award: Norma Hoffman
Organization Award: Friends of Sugarland Run
County Employee Award: Gary Roisum