Atlanta Volunteer Receives TPL’s Ferguson Award

ATLANTA, 12/2/2008: Atlantan Ralph Edwards has been named a 2008 recipient of The Trust for Public Land’s Douglas P. Ferguson Award for his outstanding service and extraordinary commitment to conserving land for people, it was announced today.

The award is named for Douglas P. Ferguson, a founder and leader of The Trust for Public Land, a national nonprofit land conservation organization. It honors the important contributions of volunteers whose energy and inspiration are instrumental to TPL’s success.

Mr. Edwards has served as a member of TPL’s Georgia Advisory Council since 1995, and was its chair from 2005 to 2007. During that time he also served on TPL’s National Leadership Council. He is now a “lifetime member” of the Georgia Council.

“Ralph is one of TPL’s most energetic, creative and dedicated advisors,” said TPL President Will Rogers. “With his guidance, planning, and tireless efforts, programs such as the Atlanta Beltline are well underway, and TPL’s mission will be beautifully exemplified as this emerald necklace of open space eventually connects 45 different Atlanta neighborhoods. Ralph’s work will affect generations of Atlantans in a powerful and lasting way.”

Mr. Edwards is the principal in EBS Property Investments, a real estate investment firm. His team has partnered with German and U.S. investors to acquire real estate in Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Washington, D.C. and Minneapolis. During his career, he has engineered the formation of more than fifty partnerships to acquire, manage and sell real estate assets. Ralph is a recipient of the prestigious Phoenix Award for his very successful career in commercial brokerage. He has an engineering degree from North Carolina State University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. His professional memberships include past chairmanship of the Atlanta Council of the Urban Land Institute and a member of the board of directors of the Atlanta Real Estate Board.

The Ferguson Award was established by TPL in 1998 to recognize the ever-increasing importance of the individual efforts of volunteers to achieving our mission. The award allows TPL’s board and staff to express appreciation in the strongest possible terms for those efforts far beyond the norm, and underscores how important volunteers and partners have become to our ability to carry out our work in the face of truly daunting need.

“While the award is given to individuals, it also acknowledges that the business of land conservation is profoundly collaborative,” said Rogers. “Only by joining individual excellence with a spirit of collaboration can we accomplish the ever more challenging conservation projects that TPL undertakes. Ralph Edwards has been an incredibly enthusiastic an effective member of the Trust for Public Land team.”

This is the third time an Atlanta leader has received the Ferguson Award. The award was given to Christopher Glenn Sawyer in 2000 and to Henry D. “Greg” Gregory in 2004. Other past recipients include:

Douglas P. Ferguson, Mill Valley, CA – 1998
Martha Wyckoff, Seattle, WA – 2000
F. Jerome Tone, San Rafael, CA – 2001
Patricia Lynn Shanks, Los Angeles, CA – 2006
James D. Sano, San Rafael, CA – 2006
Ellyn Feldman, Santa Fe, NM – 2008

The Trust for Public Land (TPL) is a national nonprofit land conservation organization that conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, gardens, historic sites, rural lands, and other natural areas, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. Since 1972, TPL has worked with willing landowners, community groups, and national, state, and local agencies to complete more than 3,500 land conservation projects in 47 states, protecting 2.5 million acres. Since 1994, TPL has helped states and communities craft and pass over 330 ballot measures, generating almost $25 billion in new conservation-related funding. The Trust for Public Land depends on the support and generosity of individuals, foundations, and businesses to achieve our land for people mission.