Trevor BurkeYouth Council Member
Trevor Burke is a high school junior at St. Mark’s School of Texas in Dallas, Texas. He is especially passionate about conservation and preservation, spending the past several years protecting and preserving the nearly extinct Blackland Prairie, considered one of the most threatened eco-regions in the world. With less than 1% of the original vegetation remaining, the Blackland Prairie exists only in scattered parcels along the Texas and Oklahoma border.
Removing invasive grasses, planting native species, and protecting existing Blackland Prairies, Trevor led significant conservation projects. He has also received a Disney Friends for Change grant, aiding his efforts further. Trevor is currently working with wildlife biologists to research the reintroduction of pen-raised Northern Bobwhite Quail in the Blackland Prairie. To date, there is no scientific documentation of pen raised quail surviving long enough to reproduce, as many are killed by predators within weeks of release. For the past three years, Trevor’s research has focused on breeding, hatching, raising and releasing banded pen-raised quail in the Blackland Prairie, and specifically examines whether providing sufficient acclimation and resources necessary for them to survive long enough after release will allow their permanent residence. Trevor possesses a Texas Game Bird Breeder’s License and is authorized to breed and release up to 1,000 quail per year.
Trevor has made numerous Earth Day presentations to the Dallas community educating others about the Blackland Prairie, its native grasses and wildlife, and challenging them to preserve their local environment. He is also currently the National Conservation Chair for the National Society of the Children of the American Revolution. In this capacity, Trevor is responsible for planning and promoting conservation programs for local societies across the United States.
In recognition for all of his environmental efforts, Trevor was recently honored in Salt Lake City as one of three National Youth Finalists for the 2017 Outdoor Inspiration Award sponsored by the Outdoor Retailer Association. He is also earned, for the past three years, the President’s Volunteer Service Gold Award for volunteering more than 250+ hours over a 12-month period.
In his spare time, Trevor enjoys Boy Scouts and science-related activities. He is an Eagle Scout with six Palms and a Brotherhood member of the Order of the Arrow. He has earned 116 Merit Badges, and is on target to earn all 138 Merit Badges, an accomplishment earned by less than 300 Scouts out of 112 million Scouts since 1910. He has served as the Senior Patrol Leader of his Boy Scout Troop and has staffed various Scouting events and camps where he teaches scouting skills to younger scouts.
This summer, Trevor is working at The Perot Museum in Dallas as one of the Leaders of Discovery Corps, the student volunteer program which fosters an interest in science, nature and technology by assisting teachers in leading the Summer Camp program for children and interacting with Museum guests. He is also one of twenty-five high school students selected to attend Camp 43: Leader of One, Leader of Many at the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum.