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EPA Administrator Honors Mississippi Leader with President's Volunteer Service Award

Release Date: 03/21/2007
Contact Information: Laura Niles, (404) 562-8353,

(ATLANTA – March 21, 2007) EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson honored Robert E. Fairbank, Jr. with the President’s Volunteer Service Award today at the National Water Infrastructure Conference in Atlanta. Fairbank has been an active volunteer and leader in Mississippi and throughout the southeast as President of the Wolf River Conservation Society, where he helped preserve more than 2,500 acres of river bank along 24 miles on both sides of the Wolf River.

“Today we honor Bob Fairbank for answering President Bush's call to serve a cause greater than himself,” said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. “Dedicated volunteers like Bob are inspiring others to join them in delivering America a brighter, healthier future."

Under Fairbank’s leadership, the Wolf River Conservation Society supported passage of Mississippi’s Scenic Stewardship Stream program and designation of Wolf River as Mississippi’s first designated scenic
stream. He led a multi-state land trust coalition involving Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and the panhandle of Florida to coordinate with the Land Trust Alliance to sponsor workshops, training and
education conferences for conservation professionals.

Fairbank has served as President of the Mississippi Wildlife Federation and was honored as their Conservationist of the Year. He also headed Keep Mississippi Beautiful and has received Volunteer of the
Year awards from the Mississippi Nature Conservancy and the Wolf River Conservation Society.

In his January 2002 State of the Union Address, President Bush called on all Americans to make a difference in their communities through volunteer service. He created USA Freedom Corps, an Office of the White House, to strengthen and expand volunteer service. Americans are responding to the President’s Call to Service.

The President's Volunteer Service Award was created at the President’s direction by the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation. The Award is available to youth ages 14 and under who have completed 50 or more hours of volunteer service; to individuals 15 and older who have completed 100 or more hours; and to families or groups who have completed 200 or more hours. For more information about the Award, please visit

Go to or call 1-877-USA-CORPS to find an existing volunteer service opportunity in your area, or to find more information about service programs, including national service programs such as the Peace Corps, AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, and Citizen Corps. USA Freedom Corps is also highlighting youth volunteer service. Visit for games and ideas to see how America's youth are making a difference.