Bob Plotnick and Gay Jensen are truly an example of a couple who have a real passion for animals and conservation – whether here in the Northwest, or in far-away Papua New Guinea. Bob has been a professor in the Evans School of Public Affairs at University of Washington for 25 years. Gay is an award-winning weaver, quilter and textile artist. Bob and Gay recently celebrated their 37th wedding anniversary, and are avid birders (bird watchers). They also love turtles and kangaroos – specifically tree kangaroos.
When they met Conservation Director Dr. Lisa Dabek here at WPZ a few years ago, they admired her conservation approach and were inspired by her work partnering with local people to protect wildlife and habitat with the Tree Kangaroo Conservation Program (TKCP).
Bob and Gay were so inspired by Lisa’s work they chose to make a significant gift to fund the work of TKCP, protecting tree kangaroos in Papua New Guinea (PNG).
A portion of their gift was also designated to go towards the Tree Kangaroo Conservation Trust, which will be matched by a generous id="mce_marker" million matching challenge grant from Conservation International. As part of the partnership between TKCP and Conservation International, the Trust was established to fund the support structure, local office, staff, and programs needed to administer the recently protected 188,000-acre Conservation Area in PNG for tree kangaroos and other endemic species.