Shepard receives Eure-Gardner Award for significant contributions to protection of the N.C. coast
RALEIGH — The N.C. Coastal Resources Commission on Wednesday bestowed its highest honor, the Eure-Gardner award, on former Coastal Resources Commission member Melvin Shepard.
Commissioner Bob Emory, who chaired the commission during much of Shepard’s tenure on the board, presented the award to Shepard at a commission meeting in Atlantic Beach.
Shepard, who co-owns and operates New River Nets in Sneads Ferry, served on the Coastal Resources Commission from 2000 to 2013. He was honored for his long-time commitment to the Coastal Resources Commission and his steadfast advocacy for commercial fishing and coastal conservation.
The Eure-Gardner award honors people and organizations who have made significant contributions to protect the natural, cultural and economic resources of the coastal area. It is named for Thomas Eure, the first chairman of the commission, and William Gardner, a long-time member and former chairman of the Coastal Resources Advisory Council.
The Division of Coastal Management regulates development in the state’s 20 coastal counties, helps local governments establish public access to coastal waters and administers the Coastal Reserve Program, which sets aside coastal lands for research and education.
The Coastal Resources Commission establishes policies for the N.C. Coastal Management Program and adopts rules for the Coastal Area Management Act and the N.C. Dredge and Fill Act. The commission designates areas of environmental concern, adopts rules and policies for coastal development within those areas, and certifies local land-use plans.