Local wildlife expert wins State and National Awards

April 2, 2013 - Bloomfield Hills, MI – Local wildlife expert, Rob Mies, recently was honored for his outstanding partnership with the Wildlife Division of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the winner of the United States Forest Service Wings Across the Americas Bat Conservation Award.

Rob MiesThe “Ozz Warback Award” was given to Rob Mies for his outstanding partnership with the Wildlife Division of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources during their annual meeting in Roscommon, Michigan. The award for outstanding partnership was named after Ozz Warbach, a research biologist and the Division’s conservation illustrator, who retired in 1977. Like the award that has been established, Ozz demonstrated outstanding partnership with the public in making people aware of environmental and wildlife issues long before it was popular.

Mies and the Organization for Bat Conservation were also the winner of the US Forest Service Wings Across the Americas Bat Conservation Award. “BatsLIVE! A Distance Learning Adventure,” a comprehensive education and outreach program that encourages innovative partnerships through a variety of events to teach more than 220,000 people with high-quality, engaging information on bat conservation. Using distance learning methods, the partners presented a series of live webinars and live webcasts, offered through a dynamic we platform (BatsLIVE.pwnet.org).

A Michigan native, Mies is the author of several scientific papers, along with the book “Understanding Bats,” the producer of OBC’s award-winning video “Bats: The True Story,” and also co-author of the field guide “Beginner’s Guide to Bats.” The Bloomfield Hills resident and EMU graduate has 20+ years of experience crawling through caves, wading through swamps, studying animals, and educating people of the Great Lakes about the unique wildlife the lives around us all.

“We’re fortunate to on occasions work with those rare individuals whose talents, charisma, and passion for the natural resources are such a catalyst for positive change. Rob is one of those rare people who bring a never-ending enthusiasm to the table and whose dynamic personality naturally draws people to him. Rob’s been able to harness that energy to share the conservation message throughout our state and across the globe with countless children and adults alike. He has and continues to make a difference in shifting public opinion about bats not only in this state but nationally. OBC, the organization he founded has grown to be a national conservation player and shares his education message.”

BILL SCULLON, WILDLIFE BIOLOGIST FOR THE MNDR

About the Organization for Bat Conservation: The mission of the Organization for Bat Conservation (OBC) is to preserve bats and their habitats through education, collaboration and research. The nonprofit organization hosts the largest grass-roots bat conservation education program in the United States, presenting more than 1,500 live shows to over 250,000 people annually. OBC hosts the annual Great Lakes Bat Festival, and live animal exhibits are also provided for museums, science centers, wildlife festivals, and more. OBC’s permanent exhibit, the Bat Zone, is located at Cranbrook Institute of Science in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. For more information, to become a member and donate, visit www.batconservation.org or call (248) 248-645-3239.