NOTE: This is an archive article from 1990. It may contain out-of-date information.
The Delaware Audubon Society honored Donald K. Sharpe at our 1990 Annual Dinner for his considerable accomplishments in preserving open space in Delaware.
As a member of the Local 1183 U.A.W. Conservation Committee, Don has been an initiator and promoter of some of the most important land acquisitions in Delaware.
Of course, Don does not work his miracles alone. He has a knack for involving everyone, little people and big people, forming new environmental groups out of old configurations to accomplish the job.
Don encouraged the U.A.W. to join the Delaware Wildlife Federation and worked to get Delaware’s landmark Coastal Zone Act passed.
In the 1960s Don involved the U.A.W. with the Sierra Club in promoting the acquisition of the White Clay Creek Preserve and Carpenter State Park.
In 1973, he brought together several groups to form the Coalition for Natural Stream Valleys, Inc. and worked to prevent the damming of White Clay Creek, to develop water supply alternatives and a unified water system for New Castle County.
In the mid 1970s, connecting the White Clay Creek preserve and the Middle Run Natural Area seemed feasible. Don has worked to elect sympathetic public officials and contacted landowners in the area for many years. His efforts have made possible the public acquisition of all sizes of land parcels, from one acre up.
Don has a fertile imagination when it comes to promotional activities. Legislators loved the hayrides and the pig roast. Kermit Justice will not forget the relay race to Buena Vista to deliver a plea for a moratorium for damming the White Clay Creek to then Governor Russell Peterson. Justice was the last leg of the relay.
Don has lobbied hard to keep our parks natural and not overdeveloped sports complexes.
Don is presently working for the passage of SB 110, a bill to allow funding the State Land Acquisition Fund from .25% of the 2.0% realty transfer tax. What started as zero organizations first became 25, then 100, now there are 311 organizations involved in supporting SB 110.
The Delaware Audubon Society is happy to honor Don K. Sharpe with its Conservation Award at its annual dinner on May 18 at the Radisson hotel in Wilmington.