OON contributor Cross to receive Cardinal Award

Frequent Ohio Outdoor News contributor Tom Cross of Adams County is joining the ranks of acclaimed artist John Ruthven, boating advocate Norm Schultz, and Ohio-headquartered Longaberger Company.

Cross is set to receive the second-highest honor that can bestow on an individual by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources: The Cardinal Award. This award began in 1971 and is “given to recognize outstanding and significant contributions that have served to enhance or further ODNR’s core mission,” the ODNR website says.

The last class of Cardinal Award recipients was in 2013.

Criteria for the Cardinal Award includes:

  • Nominations can only be made by employees of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.


  • Nominee may be an individual or organization.


  • Nominee must have materially demonstrated the awareness and concern reflected in ODNR’s mission through a continuing program or single major effort. Special consideration will be given to those nominees who have shown creativity and innovation in their contributions.
  • Nominee may not currently be employed by ODNR.

In being told that he will become the latest recipient of this high honor, Cross says he’s most humbled by the nomination and ultimate selection.

And surprised, too, added Cross, an outdoors writer, author of the authorative “Fishing Ohio,” as well as the executive director for the Adams County Travel Bureau.

In working on behalf of the outdoors, Cross says he take immense pride in helping to secure state funding for the construction of two paddle-sports launch areas in Ohio Brush Creek.

“Wow, I’m speechless; to have been chosen for this award, it is an honor,” said Cross. “To join the ranks of recipients in the field of natural resources protection and enhancement like John Ruthven, Lou Klewer, the Ohio Nature Conservancy and others truly is a remarkable honor. I’m deeply touched.”

Cross will receive his honor Sept. 22 at a ceremony held at Malabar Farm State Park. Expected to present the Cardinal Award to Cross will be Natural Resources Director James Zehringer.

The Natural Resources Department’s highest honor is its Ohio Natural Resources Hall of Fame awards, which began in 1966. It is presented to current and past Ohioans “who have made significant contributions to preserving and protecting the state’s water, soil, woodlands, wildlife and mineral resources. To date, 155 individuals have been accorded this honor.

Categories: Blog Content, News, Ohio – Jeffrey Frischkorn

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