Support pours in for York’s Las Nubes Rainforest

Final tallying has found this year’s Fisher Fund Wine Tasting & Auction raised more than $140,000, the second-highest total ever for the event.

Held annually every spring at the Vaughan Estate on the Estates of Sunnybrook, the event supports the Fisher Fund for Neotropical Conservation and York University’s Las Nubes Rainforest in Costa Rica.

“The wine auction is important because it keeps a generous, interesMamdouh Shoukri and Dr. Woody Fisherted and important segment of the non-academic community in touch with the Las Nubes Project,” says Dr. Woody Fisher, who donated Las Nubes to York in 1998. “Besides, the event is comfortable, congenial and cohesive.”

Right: From left, York President & Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri and Dr. Woody Fisher

Since 1998, members of the Faculty of Environmental Studies (FES) and FES students have worked with international partners to conduct research into the biological and ecological diversity of the 124-hectare rainforest.

Through the Fisher Fund, the program has made significant advancements in conservation and biodiversity protection, rural sustainability and environmental education in local Costa Rican schools.

Scotiabank and Timothy’s Coffees of the World Inc., now a wholly owned subsidiary of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc., were sponsors of the event.

Time was taken to honour the memory of the late Howard Daugherty (left), creator of the Las Nubes program and professor with York’s Faculty of Environmental Studies. “One cannot overestimate the loss of Howard Daugherty to the Las Nubes program, the Faculty of Environmental Studies and to York University,” said FES Dean Barbara Rahder.

The Las Nubes program is expected to soon announce an endowed Chair in Neotropical Conservation, thanks to generous support from BMO Financial Group, The Midloch Foundation, the Lillian & Don Wright Foundation, James Love (LLB ’73, LLM ’86), Guy Burry (BA ’82), Woody Fisher (Hon.  ’08) and Peter Westaway. The Donald F. Hunter Foundation continues to support student research at Las Nubes and the Kenneth M. Molson Foundation generously maintains its support of the Avian Monitoring Project  in the Las Nubes- Los Cusingos Biological Corridor.

Above: From left, George Michel, previous CEO of Timothy’s Coffees of the World Inc., Rola Michel, and Paul Marcus, president & CEO of York University Foundation

“York’s strength in environmental studies is a real point of pride. Research and study in York’s Las Nubes Rainforest in Costa Rica is a big part of that…and a big part of our commitment to sustainability,” said York University President & Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri.

Above: From left, Fay Jarvis, Sam Sarick (BA ’73), Esther Sarick and Valerie Grant enjoying the champagne reception

Proceeds from the Fisher Fund Wine Tasting & Auction contributed to York to the Power of 50, York’s recently completed 50th anniversary fundraising campaign that raised $207 million toward a $200-million goal.