'Star Wars' Star to Receive Wildlife Ambassador Award

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Ford (right) and Russell Mittermeier, who will receive this year's Indianapolis Prize. (photo courtesy Indianapolis Zoological Society) Ford (right) and Russell Mittermeier, who will receive this year's Indianapolis Prize. (photo courtesy Indianapolis Zoological Society)
INDIANAPOLIS -

The Indianapolis Zoological Society Inc. has selected film star Harrison Ford as the recipient of the 2018 Jane Alexander Global Wildlife Ambassador Award. The organization says the honor is given to people "who have been effective, credible and consistent voices for wildlife."

The "Star Wars" and "Indiana Jones" star is an honorary chair of the Indianapolis Prize, which is also awarded by the Indianapolis Zoological Society, and serves on the executive committee for Conservation International, an organization of which Ford has been a member for 25 years. Additionally, Ford was instrumental in the establishment of Conservation International's Center for Applied Bioscience Diversity and Center for Environmental Leadership in Business.

“Nothing is more important to human society than preserving its natural capital. Nature does not need people, people need nature,” Ford said. “Our health relies entirely on the vitality of our fellow species on Earth. I care deeply for the natural world. It’s not about me, it’s not about me at all, it’s about this other world we’re going to leave behind. If we don’t stop the destruction of nature, nothing else will matter. Jobs won’t matter, our economies won’t matter, our freedoms and ethics won’t matter, our children’s education and potential won’t matter. If we end the ability of a healthy natural world to sustain humanity nothing else will matter." 

The award adds to a number of accolades Ford has received over the years, including Conservation International's Founders' Award, the World Ecology Award from the International Center for Tropical Ecology, the Global Citizen Award from the Center for Health and Global Environment and a Lindbergh Award for his efforts to balance technology and nature.

"Harrison Ford is among today’s most credible conservationists and is widely respected by the professional and academic conservation communities," said Michael Crowther, chief executive officer of the Indianapolis Zoological Society. "Harrison’s involvement with Conservation International spans decades and he has worked with many of today’s leading scientists and experts."

Ford joins fellow actor Sigourney Weaver, who received the Global Wildlife Ambassador Award in 2016. He will receive the award September 29 at the Indianapolis Prize gala in downtown Indy, where Russell Mittermeier will also receive the Indianapolis Prize.

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