The Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife & Fish Refuge (Refuge) Winona offices recently recognized Beverly Spande of Winona, MN as the 2020 Volunteer of the Year. Bev has contributed hundreds of hours since she started volunteering for the Refuge in 1996. She is a mainstay of the annual Youth Ice Fishing event and fishing and picnic with Project Compass. She is always willing and eager to lend a hand at outreach events and even took her first canoe trip on the Refuge as part of a public tour. Bev also serves as the Treasurer for the Friends of the Refuge Headwaters, a private non-profit organization that supports the Refuge.
During the early part of 2020, volunteers contributed more than 1,400 hours of service representing over $34,000 to the Refuge. Volunteer activities included assisting with the Refuge booth at community functions, biological surveys, youth ice fishing day, and invasive species monitoring and control.
The volunteer program is an excellent way to gain experience, help wildlife, meet interesting people and is open to all ages and abilities. If you would like to enjoy a productive and rewarding experience as a Refuge Volunteer, please call (507) 454-7351.