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Summer Everglades Interns Special Graduation Luncheon

Vanessa Aparicio, Jody Hartshorn, John Marshall, David Diaz, Robert Hill.  Photo by:  Corby Kaye Studio Palm Beach

Vanessa Aparicio, Jody Hartshorn, John Marshall, David Diaz, Robert Hill.  Photo by:  Corby Kaye Studio Palm Beach

Arthur R. Marshall Foundation Salutes Four Summer Everglades Interns at Special Graduation Luncheon


Nancy Marshall, President of the Board of the
Arthur R. Marshall Foundation
, which champions the restoration and preservation of the greater Everglades ecosystem, saluted the nonprofit organization’s four Summer Everglades Interns at a special Graduation Luncheon.

More than 80 supporters of the Marshall Foundation attended the luncheon, which was held on August 4 at the West Palm Beach headquarters of the Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties. Among those attending were West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio, Palm Beach County School Board member Jenny Prior Brown and Leslie Lilly, President/CEO of the Community Foundation.

“To the extent possible, the 2011 summer interns calculated the total economic impact of the 2011 drought/water supply shortage, concluding that economic costs of water shortages would be significantly reduced by restoring the Everglades at less cost than the economic impacts of droughts over the next 40 years,” said John Marshall, who is Board Chair for the Marshall Foundation & the Florida Environmental Institute, Inc.

“The costs of recurring drought/water shortages over the next 40 years were calculated to be between $8 - $11 billion; this begins to approach the cost of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) implementation.  This cost range provides a conservative estimate, because there were many negative externalities that could not be calculated, such as soil loss. Based on CERP total benefits and costs, including the benefit of drought/water supply shortage cost avoidance, the CERP return on investment or benefit to cost ratio was estimated to be on the order of $10 for every $1 spent. So the message from our Summer Interns is this: Let's get on with restoring the Everglades and its historic River of Grass."

The Marshall Foundation’s 2011 Everglades Interns were Vanessa Aparicio, who recently graduated from Stetson University with a bachelors of science in biology and environmental science; David Diaz, a recent graduate of the University of Florida with a Bachelors degree in Environmental Science and a minor in International Studies in Agriculture and Life Sciences; Judy Hartshorn, who graduated from the University of Miami in May 2011 with a major in marine affairs and minors in biology and communication studies; and Robert Hill, who is in his final semester at Florida Gulf Coast University, where he is majoring in environmental studies with a minor in biology.

“The purpose of this life-changing, career-enhancing summer program is to train the next generation of environmental leaders,” added Mrs. Marshall.  “Our objective is to create knowledgeable professionals who can address issues like the Everglades from a multitude of viewpoints. I’m pleased to say that many of our graduates have gone on to achieve impressive things in the ecological sciences.”


About the Arthur R. Marshall Foundation:

Based in Palm Beach County, the Marshall Foundation champions the restoration and preservation of the greater Everglades ecosystem through science-based education and outreach programs.   Annually, more than 15,000 elementary and high school students in Palm Beach County actively participate in the Marshall Foundation's various education programs. 

Founded in 1998, the nonprofit organization has in recent years awarded more than $400,000 in scholarships and internships, planted nearly 100,000 native Florida trees in wetland areas, and involved more than 5,000 volunteers in hands-on restoration projects


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