Award Recognizes American Bird Conservancy Sustainability Project with International Paper Company

Featured receiving the award (left to right) are Mark Sutton – IP Chief Executive Officer, EJ Willams – ABC Vice President, South East and Atlantic Coast Region, Jeremy Poirier – IP Senior Manager, Fiber Certification and Sustainability, and Chris Keuleman – IP Vice President, Global Government Relations. Photo by MCB-AFPA

For the last four years, American Bird Conservancy (ABC) and International Paper (IP), the world's largest pulp and paper company, have been partners in a forest sustainability project in the southeastern United States. Now, the partnership has been honored with a 2023 Leadership in Sustainability Award from the American Forest and Paper Association (AF&PA), an industry trade group. 

ABC and IP were given the award in November in the “Resilient U.S. Forests” category, which recognizes projects or programs that enhance the “diverse values of forests, such as water, carbon, biodiversity, recreation, and forest products.” A series of 2022 workshops across the Southeast did just that: ABC and IP educated a wide range of stakeholders – from IP employees to landowners – about the value of working forests for birds and how land managers can enhance bird habitat. ABC and IP also developed outreach materials, including a 12-page booklet about bird-friendly forests, and collaborated with South Carolina Educational Television on a film about Swallow-tailed Kites – one of the partnership's priority species. 

“We are thrilled that ABC's partnership with International Paper has been recognized by the American Forest and Paper Association,” said EJ Williams, Vice President of ABC's Southeast and Atlantic Coast Region. “Our partnership brings together the scale of IP's operations and the influence of their customers with ABC's expertise in bird conservation to ensure a sustainable future for forests and birds like the Swallow-tailed Kite that depend on those forested landscapes.”


American Bird Conservancy is a nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving wild birds and their habitats throughout the Americas. With an emphasis on achieving results and working in partnership, we take on the greatest problems facing birds today, innovating and building on rapid advancements in science to halt extinctions, protect habitats, eliminate threats, and build capacity for bird conservation. Find us on abcbirds.orgFacebookInstagram, and X/Twitter (@ABCbirds).

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