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Press release content from PR Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.

Cox Conserves Hero Grand Prize Winner is Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center Volunteer

November 9, 2021 GMT
Diane Vaszily, Cox Conserves Grand Prize Winner
Diane Vaszily, Cox Conserves Grand Prize Winner
Diane Vaszily, Cox Conserves Grand Prize Winner

ATLANTA, Nov. 9, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Diane Vaszily, a rescue and education volunteer with the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center in Scottsdale, Ariz., is the 2021 Cox Conserves Hero grand prize winner.

Vaszily helps rescue and rehab orphaned and injured infant and adult mountain lions, bobcats, skunks, opossums, black bears and other animals. Around 80% of the animals — and nearly all of the infants — are released back into their natural habitats.

More than 6,000 people voted in the 2021 Cox Conserves Heroes contest. The James M. Cox Foundation will donate $60,000 to Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center in Diane’s honor.

“I am proud to use this award to contribute to the expansion of the environmental and conservation efforts of Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center where hundreds of other volunteers join together to make things happen. With this gift, our land conservation program, education classes and wildlife rehabilitation efforts will be able to expand to ensure our continued mission! A huge thank you to all who voted and to Cox for creating this miracle,” Vaszily said.

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“The work Diane does to educate the public on the importance of wildlife in a healthy ecosystem and how to coexist with wildlife advances our mission to save our wildlife, one life at a time. Public support like the Cox Conserves Heroes donation makes our work possible and sustains our wild spaces for years to come,” said Linda Searles, executive director of the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center.

“Diane Vaszily is doing amazing work at the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center to care for wildlife and inspire a love of nature and the outdoors among kids and their families in Arizona,” said Diane Regas, president and CEO of The Trust for Public Land. “We are grateful to Diane, the other Cox Conserves Heroes and to Cox Enterprises for their outstanding dedication and commitment to creating healthier and more connected communities.”

The Cox Conserves Heroes program, operated in partnership with The Trust for Public Land, recognizes volunteers nationwide who create, preserve or enhance shared outdoor spaces in their local communities. Cox and The Trust for Public Land selected 12 regional Cox Conserves Heroes from dozens of nominations submitted this summer. The public then voted to select the grand prize winner.

The James M. Cox Foundation will donate a total of $140,000 to environmental nonprofits selected by Cox Conserves Heroes, including the $60,000 to the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center.

Since 2008, the awards program has donated more than $1.2 million to environmental nonprofits and honored more than 200 volunteers who have helped us make a significant impact on conservation and environmental protection in our communities.

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Cox Conserves Heroes is part of the national Cox Conserves sustainability initiative that was launched by Cox Chairman Jim Kennedy. Since 2007, Cox has invested more than $1 billion in sustainable businesses and technologies and set goals to send zero waste to landfill by 2024 and become carbon and water neutral by 2034.

Cox Enterprises
Cox Enterprises is dedicated to building a better future through our leading communications, automotive and media companies. Our major operating subsidiaries include Cox Communications and Cox Automotive, and we are strategically investing in new industries and emerging technologies, with sizeable interests in clean technology and health care. Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Cox is a global company with nearly $20 billion in annual revenues and brands that include Autotrader, Kelley Blue Book and Cox Homelife. Founded in 1898 by Ohio Governor James M. Cox, the company is a family-owned business committed to its people, communities and planet. To learn more about Cox, visit coxenterprises.com, view our collective impact report at coxcsrreport.com, or follow us on Twitter via @CoxEnterprises or @AlexTaylor_Cox.

About the James M. Cox Foundation
The James M. Cox Foundation is named in honor of Cox Enterprises’ founder and provides funding for capital campaigns and special projects in communities where the company operates. James M. Cox was Ohio’s first three-term governor and the 1920 Democratic nominee for president of the United States. The Foundation concentrates its community support in several areas including: conservation and environment; early childhood education; empowering families and individuals for success; and health.

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SOURCE Cox Conserves