Our Lone Star Land Stewards
Dianna and Gary Kocurek were recently honored with this recognition at the TPWD-hosted Lone Star Land Steward Awards. We are honored to have such dedicated prairie stewards as members!
Care and restoration of prairie lands is no small thing. It is a landscape that needs constant interaction and maintenance. Remnants are rare, and the restoration and replication of native prairie is a long-term commitment with many challenges.
We are so proud of the landowners in our prairie circle who have received this award. The Lone Star Land Steward Award recognizes private landowners for their work in habitat management and wildlife conservation. With 95% of Texas land in private ownership, they are an important part of the conservation of Texas’ natural heritage!
Paul Mathews Prairie
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department awarded Paul Mathews the distinguished Lone Star Land Steward Award in 1998. It was one of the earliest awards. According to Jim Eidson, “I nominated Paul for the Lone Star Land Steward Award. He won the statewide award, and shook then governor George Bush’s hand. I was unable to go to Austin with him, but he called me around 1 a.m. on his trip home. He was a very happy man, to say the least. If he had been capable of a cartwheel, he would have.” Read more…
Bob and Mickey Burleson received this award in 2008 for the Blackland Prairie region. Their hard work at prairie conservation and restoration was recogonized. We are so honored to finally hold a conservation easement on this legacy prairie. Read more…
Daphne Prairie and landowner B.F. Hicks were recognized in 2013 for the conservation of his family prairie legacy near Mount Vernon Texas. Daphne is one of our favorite prairies! Read more…
Mark and Cheryl Brown of the NPAT Fayette Prairie Chapter won the award in 2017 and now have received the 2023 Texas Leopold Conservation Award. Recognition for their prairie restoration work is well deserved!
Don Kirchoff and his siblings Scott, Brenda and Susan were recognized in 2019 for restoring their Wilson County family farm from cropland to native prairie, and sharing it with others. Read more…
Ebel Grasslands Ranch
Karl and Kelli Ebel received the award in 2022 for their working grassland ranch in Hopkins County. The Ebels use cattle to restore their native grassland and share their experiences with others. Read more…
And this year’s winners are Gary and Dianna Kocurek. They are leaders of the NPAT Fayette Prairie chapter, and are restoring their Weimar-area property to native prairie and savannah.