North Cascades ranger wins NPS wilderness stewardship award

Kelly Bush, a district ranger at North Cascades National Park, recently received the Wes Henry National Excellence in Wilderness Stewardship Award, the National Park Service announced.

The award is given in honor of contributions to wilderness preservation and stewardship in the NPS.

A statement posted Tuesday on the National Park Service website read, “Kelly has been a champion of wilderness values at North Cascades since before there was federally designated wilderness within the park. Beginning as a seasonal ranger in the 1980s and then as a wilderness patrol supervisor and wilderness district ranger, Kelly has played an integral role in developing, shaping, and implementing the park’s wilderness management policies and ethics. She was instrumental in the designation of the park’s Stephen Mather Wilderness in 1988 and then had a significant role in writing the park’s first wilderness management plan in 1989.

“An effective collaborator, Kelly has worked with other subject matter experts on many interdisciplinary wilderness topics, including revegetation and plant propagation, wilderness character monitoring, and climbing. Kelly has served as the co-chair for the last seven years on North Cascade’s Wilderness and Aviation Committee and as a field representative for three years on the NPS National Wilderness Leadership Council.

“Kelly’s investment and commitment to growing wilderness stewardship is evident in her accomplishments. She has demonstrated, on multiple occasions, what it means to be passionate wilderness steward – asking difficult questions and grappling with wide-ranging and nuanced solutions.”