Connecticut Audbon Society


Dave Engelman Volunteer Benchmark Award Winners for 2017

The Connecticut Audubon Society presented three longtime volunteers and a dedicated staff member with the Dave Engelman Volunteer Benchmark Award at our annual meeting at Deer Pond Farm, in Sherman, on Sunday, October 15.

This year’s recipients have logged thousands of hours of service at Connecticut Audubon’s sanctuaries and centers and on its board and committees, all showing outstanding dedication to our mission. The honorees are Louise Crocco of Milford, Dan Miller of Manchester, Richard Telford of Pomfret, and D.G. Warner of Southport, whose stories are below.

Dan Miller
Dan, pictured to the right with Glastonbury Center Director Michelle Eckman, has spent the past nine years volunteering roughly 4,620 hours at the Center at Glastonbury.

He treats his work at the center like a paid position, helping to organize the volunteer database and update the website. He cares about our success and does what it takes to help behind-the-scenes operations run smoothly. He has great ideas, is organized, and his institutional knowledge has helped tremendously.

Richard Telford
Over the last six years, Richard has worked tirelessly on behalf of our Trail Wood Sanctuary and the legacy of Edwin Way Teale. Richard is flanked in the photo on the left by his wife, Melissa, and Pomfret Center Director Sarah Heminway, in pink.

Richard wrote a 10-year revitalization plan for the sanctuary as part of his master’s thesis. He founded and has run Trail Wood’s artist-in-residence program, which is in its fifth season, and has given numerous lectures.

A scholar and author, Richard is currently at work on a biography of Teale, thanks to a sabbatical from Woodstock Academy.



D.G. Warner
D.G joined our Board of Directors in 2007 and served through this year, as vice chairman, treasurer, and chairman of the Investment and Finance committees. He also served for more than a decade on the organization’s Fairfield Board of Governors.

These positions require daily diligence. It has paid off in recent progress toward financial sustainability.

D.G. brought an outstanding ability to visualize trends and explain them in easily understandable terms.

Louise Crocco
You’ll always get a smile and welcoming greeting from Louise at the Milford Point Coastal Center. Since its inception nearly 22 years ago, Lou has been more than its ambassador.

She has handled every responsibility, from payroll to paper towels with a can-do attitude. Lou’s devotion to Connecticut Audubon and its mission, and her respect and passion for the environment and conservation, is unmatched.

Louise is one of only three Connecticut Audubon staff members to have received the award.

You can view the entire list of recipients here.

Connecticut Audubon Society’s Volunteer Benchmark Award was established in 1993, and is given annually by its Board of Directors to one or more selected individuals whose volunteer activity has significantly enhanced the organization’s mission. Each year, at the annual meeting, recipients are presented with a plaque commemorating their dedication to conservation.

In 2007, the award was renamed the Dave Engelman Volunteer Benchmark Award for a longtime member, donor, board member, and  one-time interim president. Engelman epitomized the characteristics of an extraordinary volunteer by helping Connecticut Audubon Society grow both in spirit and as an organization.


D.G. Warner Photo/Jen Prat Photography






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