Up Front With Sara Parker Pauley

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From Missouri Conservationist: February 2020

It’s February, the month of Valentine’s Day, and thus the birds and bees theme in this month’s features. So, it made me think of lovebirds — the lovebirds of conservation and the affection they felt not only for each other, but for our treasured natural resources.

Let’s start with Aldo Leopold, the father of wildlife conservation, and his bride, Estella. They share an amazing love story that starts in New Mexico. He worked for the U.S. Forest Service and she was a schoolteacher. After moving to Colorado, he feigned off the competition by courting her through letters. No surprise there, his superpower was his writing. Five children, A Sand County Almanac, and an amazing conservation legacy later, the two were the ultimate power couple. 15-love.

Then there’s Missouri’s own Charlie and Libby Schwartz — both brilliant and accomplished scientists, writers, professionals, side by side in the field. You rarely found one without the other. At their MDC retirement in 1981, this was said of them: “No two individuals have contributed more than Charles and Libby Schwartz to the success of Missouri conservation — past, present, and future.” 30-love.

The couples of conservation list could go on and on, like Edward D. and Pat Jones, the godparents of the Katy Trail and Prairie Fork Conservation Area; or Leo and Kay Drey of Pioneer Forest and LAD Foundation. 40-love!

So, here’s to all the lovebirds of conservation, from Missouri and beyond. It’s what the world needs now — love sweet love! Game-Set-Match.

Sara Parker Pauley, Director

This Issue's Staff

Magazine Manager - Stephanie Thurber

Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld

Associate Editor - Larry Archer

Staff Writer - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Heather Feeler
Staff Writer - Kristie Hilgedick
Staff Writer - Joe Jerek

Art Director - Cliff White

Designer - Les Fortenberry
Designer - Marci Porter

Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner

Circulation - Laura Scheuler