KDWP NATURE INTERPRETER RECEIVES NATIONAL RECOGNITION
Milford Nature Center director honored by National Association for Interpretation
PRATT — Pat Silovsky, director of the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks’ (KDWP) Milford Nature Center, near Junction City, has recently been awarded the 2010 Master Front-Line Interpreter by the National Association for Interpretation (NAI). Silvosky received the award at an NIA national workshop in Las Vegas on Nov. 18.
The Master Front-Line Interpreter is presented annually to an NAI member who has worked for five or more years in the profession and whose current duties are at least 60 percent front-line interpretation. The recipient must demonstrate a mastery of interpretive techniques, program development, and design of creative projects.
Silovsky has been director of the Milford Nature Center since 1989, where she has developed and maintains dioramas of fish and wildlife, oversees exhibits of live animals, and conducts numerous educational workshops throughout the year, often using live animals — including both bald and golden eagles — that she cares for year-round. She also works throughout the state with interpretive events and nature education competitions such as Eco-Meets and provides classroom presentations, among many other activities.
“Pat demonstrates a mastery of interpretive techniques,” said Lisa Cole, education coordinator for the Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area in Lewisville, Texas. Cole, who works in NAI Region 6 (Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas), nominated Silvosky for the award at the regional level, where she won before being honored nationally. “While her topics and themes are similar to what is available at many other nature centers, Pat’s programs are loaded with unusual props, live animals, and plenty of engaging activities,” Cole added. “In addition to being an excellent interpreter, she is a leader and mentor. Pat has served as Region 6 director and as the Kansas state coordinator. She is able to work with people of all ages and spark in them wonder and a greater awareness of Kansas’ natural resources.”
Through its awards program, NAI recognizes outstanding achievements and showcases the successes of NAI members and others working to advance the profession of interpretation. Members have been involved in the interpretation of natural and cultural heritage resources in settings such as parks, zoos, museums, nature centers, aquaria, botanical gardens, and historical sites for more than 50 years. For more information on NAI, go online to www.interpnet.com.