In 2006, after completing the West Virginia Master Naturalist course, Clark, along with his wife Ora Dixon and classmate Cheryl Jennings, established the Potomac Valley Master Naturalist Chapter in partnership with Potomac Valley Audubon Society. Clark continued to serve on the chapter’s coordinating committee and was its chair emeritus. He also served on the state advisory committee. His favorite place in nature was Cacapon State Park, where he inspired many young people through his Natural History workshops in campfire cooking, flint and steel, and vernal pools. Sadly, Clark died on December 8, 2022. He will be remembered as a man who gave us so much and will be greatly missed.
The experience of completing the initial course and field work plus the volunteer service hours was the start of this incredible journey with her renewed connection to nature, citizen science, youth engagement, environmental stewardship, and community service. With a zest for learning, Ora has continued the requirements for recertification over the years, contributed to the formation of the PVMN Chapter, and assisted with numerous Master Naturalists training courses. What Ora loves most about the Master Naturalist Program is that it has provided awesome networking opportunities to connect with other like-minded individuals with similar interests, to provide adult leadership, and mentoring opportunities to connect youth and young adult audiences to the great outdoors.
“Clark and I were the first co-chairs and my task was to set the schedule and instructors, which gave me opportunities to meet lots of interesting people. Later, I taught classes on butterflies, dragonflies, ferns, and recording/preserving. All the projects I have participated in has given me friends throughout the state as well as opportunities to travel to state parks and wildlife areas. But truly, what gives me the most pleasure are the people I have met, and become friends with, as well as the knowledge that what I have done has lasting effects for our environment.”