Earlier this year, Sky Island Alliance presented their second annual Citizen Awards to people and businesses who have shown distinction in achievement, support or activism in the international environmental arena of the embattled Sonoran ecosystem. Instead of traditional trophies, SIA commissioned custom handmade plaques from Three Star Owl to honor the recipients. Each one was personalized with native species chosen for each recipient according to their field, interest, or accomplishment. Below are: Ray Carroll with Elegant trogon, Summit Hut representative with Coati, Sherry Barrett with Desert tortoise, Sergio Avila (SIA wildlife biologist), Carlos Robles and Martha Felix de Robles with Ocelot in an oak, and David Parsons with Mexican gray wolf.
The awards were thick stoneware tiles, modeled and carved in low relief and finished in mineral oxides and glazes. The project was a pleasure for me to work on for many reasons, not least because the species selected were ones I’ve been fortunate enough to see in the wild. And I was proud to have been part of the process of recognizing people making a difference in a critical effort. I hope to work with Sky Island Alliance again in the future. (My thanks to Shiloh Walkosak for finding me, everyone at SIA, and to Jessica Lamberton and Sergio Avila of SIA for sending photos.)