Wright among 2017 Spirit of Sustainability Award winners

Photo of interim associate dean Amy Wright

Amy Wright

Amy Wright, horticulture professor and interim administrator in the College of Agriculture, has been named one of 10 recipients of Auburn University’s 2017 Spirit of Sustainability Awards.

Wright is the Harry G. Ponder Endowed Professor of Horticulture at Auburn and since May 2016 has served as interim associate dean for instruction for the college. She was chosen for the sustainability honor based on the leadership, passion, commitment and effort she has shown on behalf of the landscape and biota of Alabama as well as on the positive impact her work has on quality of life in the state and the degree to which she engages and involves others in her sustainability endeavors.

In nominating Wright for the award, Auburn landscape architecture associate professor Charlene LeBleu cited her accomplishments in educating students and the green industry on the environmental complexities of sustainable horticulture and her strong research initiatives that impact Alabama watersheds.

Wright’s research encompasses sustainable landscape horticulture, rain gardens, native plants, plant-water relations and landscape irrigation requirements.

Photo of Hallie Nelson

Hallie Nelson

In addition to Wright, this year’s list of sustainability award winners includes Department of Biosystems Engineering student Hallie Nelson. Nelson is a senior majoring in ecological engineering and minoring in Spanish and sustainability.

Biosystems engineering department head and professor Oladiran Fasina nominated Nelson for the award on the basis of her dedication to sustainability initiatives both on and off the Auburn campus, including her commitment to Auburn’s student-run Campus Kitchens Project.

“Hallie is actively involved in projects that are not typically associated with sustainability but that are actually crucial to sustainable living, including eliminating food waste, feeding those in need and improving the health of the environment,” Fasina said.

Auburn’s Office of Sustainability will formally recognize Wright, Nelson and their fellow honorees in a ceremony at the Alabama Farmers Pavilion in Ag Heritage Park in April.

The annual Spirit of Sustainability Awards exist to recognize individuals or groups of Auburn students, faculty, staff and alumni who exemplify the Auburn spirit by making significant contributions toward sustainability on campus or in a community.

Each recipient’s story serves as a powerful reminder of the ability we each possess to help create a sustainable world, the sustainability office website notes.

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