Don Jordan was named as recipient of the Indiana Sassafras Audubon Society Lifetime Achievement Award for 2014.
"This award rocognizes your contributions to the environment over the past 40 years," said Audubon board member Barbara Restle. She specifically noted Jordan's discovery of PCBs in the Bloomington, Indiana, environment in 1975 and 1976. A large Westinghouse Electric plant on the city's west side was identified as the lone source of the pesticide-like chemical. Jordan also revealed during those years that the Indiana State Board of Health knew about PCB contamination in southern Indiana milk for several years and never revealed what it knew. Later he became corresponding editor of Environment magazine.
Aside from Jordan's newspaper and magazine work for the environment, he championed better habitat acquistion for wildlife and regulations concerning both fish and wildlife. In the 90s, Jordan was part of a large group of journalists who worked to shut down U.S. Steel discharges into Lake Michigan.
During the presentation ceremony at Indiana University, Jordan thanked the Audubon members present and pointed out he had received Sassafras Audubon's first "media good guy awaard" in 1976 while covering the Westinghouse story in Bloomington.
"I appreciated the support of local
Audubon members in those days, because everyone else was against me
then.". Over 100 local businessmen (attorneys and bankers and store
owners) bought a full page newspaper ad supporting Westinghouse's position
that PCBs where simply another environmental contaminate and denied
the chemical's dangrous helth risks. The county public health officer
(Dr. Thomas Middleton) declared PCBs were "like Vitamin E."
Although the Bloomington newspaper dropped his column in 2007 over the canned hunting columns he wrote, Jordan still carries the flag for environmental and outdoor reporting in Bloomington. As co-host of "Inside Outdoors" on Bloomington radio stateion WGCL 1370, he is still fighting the canned hunting powers and sticking up for fish and wildlife. Live streaming at 6 a.m. to 7 a.m. every Saturday: WGCL Radio Live