Categories: Press Releases



2019 Jan Nona Environmental Steward Award Goes to Daisy Lee

The 2019 Jan Nona Environmental Stewardship Award has been awarded to Daisy Lee, an
Environmental Science teacher at Krueger Middle School. As Director of the Krueger
Environmental Learning Center (KELC), Lee has helped students gain hands-on experience
with planting trees, preparing walking trails, and collecting soil samples from nearby streams.
KELC has also helped Krueger Middle School reduce their waste from an average of 11 bags
per day down to 2 with their compost/recycling program. Lee is helping our future community
leaders learn and understand more about our environment and how they can have a hand in
helping protect it. Ms. Lee has also established an Environmental Science Recycling Program
that allows the community to help Krueger raise money from recycled materials – everything
from markers to shoes can be recycled through this program!

Jan Nona was a senior citizen inspired to act on behalf of her neighbors. Upon the discovery in
the early 2000’s that the local shallow aquifer, which was the source of drinking water for the
Town of Pines, had been poisoned by coal combustion waste, Jan worked relentlessly to help
her neighbors. She inspired residents to join her and demanded accountability by local, state
and federal officials. The result was voluntary funding by “potentially responsible parties” to
provide most homeowners with municipal water from Michigan City. Jan Nona has been
described as “rock-hard and soil soft.” She was an incredible resident of La Porte County who
fought hard and smart, winning back her town’s right to safe drinking water. Her legacy lives on
through this award.

Since 1992, Unity Foundation of La Porte County has served donors, nonprofits and local
communities. As La Porte County’s community foundation, it manages approximately $32
million in assets, administers more than 325 charitable funds, and has distributed approximately
$19 million through direct grants and scholarships. The Council on Foundations has deemed
Unity Foundation in compliance with all Indiana and national ethical and operating standards for
community foundations.

Unity Foundation’s mission is to strengthen La Porte County now and forever by building
permanent endowments; providing leadership; offering philanthropic vehicles for everyone; and,
being a catalyst for social and economic vitality. For more information, please visit
or call 219-879-0327.

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