Saint Louis Zoo Presents Conservation Award to Armenian scientist

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Saint Louis Zoo Presents Conservation Award to Armenian scientist

Nov 22, 2011


November 21, 2011
Saint Louis Zoo 314/781-0900
Susan Gallagher, 314/646-4633
Christy Childs, 314/646-4639

Mahlon B. Wallace, III, Peabody Energy and Interco Charitable Trust also honored

The 2011 Saint Louis Zoo Conservation Award went to Armenian scientist Dr. Aram Aghasyan (pronounced Ah-RAHM Ah-GAH-see-an). The senior scientist with the Academy of Sciences and Head of Protected Areas with the Ministry of Nature Protection in Armenia worked with the Zoo to establish parks and sanctuaries in Armenia to conserve Armenia’s wildlife.

The Zoo also presented three Saint Louis Zoo Awards to outstanding community leaders at its 20th annual Marlin Perkins Society Dinner on Nov. 10, 2011.

Conservation Award
Dr. Aram Aghasyan received his Ph.D. in herpetology when Armenia was still part of the Soviet Union. A dedicated conservationist, Aghasyan has been an integral part of a team that has proposed a number of new national parks and sanctuaries in Armenia. He played a vital role in the establishment of Zangezur Sanctuary and Arevik National Park, which were formally dedicated by the Armenian government in October 2009.

In June 2011, Aghasyan was awarded the Biodiversity Medal by the Minister of Nature Protection for his dedication to conserving Armenia's wildlife and wild places.

Aghasyan has collaborated with the Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute as a Conservation Fellow for the Center for Near East Viper Conservation in Armenia.

Individual Award
Receiving the Individual Saint Louis Zoo Award was Mahlon B. “Lonnie” Wallace, III, an active leader of the Zoo for decades. He served as one of the first Saint Louis Zoo Commissioners for two years in the 1960s, was president of the Zoo Friends Association in 1970 and 1971, served as a trustee of the Zoo Foundation from 1993 to 2004, and in 2006, was named a Trustee Emeritus. Wallace and his wife, Lee, are loyal supporters of the Zoo and its mission, as well as members of the Heritage Society.

Wallace is perhaps best known for his efforts to bring animal sculptures to the Zoo to beautify the grounds including the Daga Boys sculpture of Cape buffalo on Historic Hill, The Ring of Bright Water in the Emerson Children’s Zoo, and most recently The Reaching Elephant and other wildlife sculptures at the Wells Fargo South Arrival Experience.

Corporate Award
Peabody Energy received the Saint Louis Zoo Corporate Award. A loyal supporter of the Saint Louis Zoo, the company gave $2.5 million to The Living Promise Campaign to help renovate the oldest building at the Zoo. The original 1917 Elephant House has been renovated and renamed Peabody Hall. Officially reopened in May 2010, Peabody Hall is used as gallery space for traveling exhibits, art displays and facility rentals.

Sharon Fiehler, Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at Peabody Energy, has been on the Zoo Association Board since 2007. Fiehler and Peabody leader Greg Boyce, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, made this great new addition to the Zoo’s history a reality.

Peabody has also participated as an underwriter for ZOOFARI and A Zoo Ado, the Zoo’s major fundraisers. Peabody’s $25,000 support for the President’s Circle of the Marlin Perkins Society, makes it the only company supporting the Society at this level.

Foundation Award
Interco Charitable Trust received the Saint Louis Zoo Foundation Award for being a strong advocate for the Zoo and for its role in the St. Louis community. Their generous donations to the Zoo over the years total over $850,000, including a gift of $150,000 to The Living Promise Campaign. This gift will be recognized at the access ramp/stroller corral at the new Sea Lion Sound Lichtenstein Arena.

Interco’s previous gifts to the Zoo are recognized at The Painted Giraffe Cafe in The Living World, the Missouri Meadow at the Monsanto Insectarium and at the Humboldt Walk at Penguin & Puffin Coast.

Dedicated trustees of the Trust include Michael R. Loynd, Lee M. Liberman, Ph.D., Robert H. Quenon, Donald E. Lasater, Ralph P. Scozzafava and Richard Loynd.

In addition to supporting the Zoo, the Interco Charitable Trust supports a number of other cultural and educational institutions, including Forest Park Forever, Washington University, St. Patrick’s Center, the MUNY and many others.



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