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Milestones abound


State of Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes (right) and Preston Cole, Secretary, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (left) present Dean Paul Robbins with the official 50th anniversary proclamation.


Governor's Proclamation
Office of the Governor, signed proclamation.

2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the Nelson Institute and the 50th anniversary of Earth Day — both testaments to Wisconsin’s environmental leadership and legacy. Created in 1970 to promote and enhance interdisciplinary environmental instruction, research, and outreach at UW–Madison, the integrated approach to learning about the environment provided the foundation for five decades of firsts and a global impact.

Renamed in 2002 in honor of former Wisconsin governor and U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, the founder of Earth Day and a lifelong champion of environmental stewardship, the Institute has been steadfast in its mission in addressing environmental challenges and serving as a catalyst for collaboration. The State of Wisconsin joined in this celebration as Governor Tony Evers signed a proclamation on February 6, 2020 recognizing the 50th anniversary of the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies.

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