Seerey-Lesters to Jointly Receive Simon Combes Conservation Award

Vancouver, BC CANADA - Aug 14, 2014 - Internationally recognized artists and couple, John Seerey-Lester and Suzie Seerey-Lester have been chosen to jointly receive the Artists for Conservation’s (AFC) top honor: the Simon Combes Conservation Artist Award.  AFC bestows this tribute annually to recognize artist members for their dedication to the conservation cause and outstanding artistic achievement. 

AFC President and Founder, Jeff Whiting explains: “We are very proud to honor an extraordinarily talented couple - John and Suzie for their lifelong dedication to wildlife conservation.” The couple will join a who’s-who roster of international recipients chosen for their artistic excellence and lifetime of extraordinary support of conservation, including David Shepherd, Robert Bateman, John Banovich, Robert Glen, Sue Stolberger, Pollyanna Pickering, Dr. Guy Harvey and Richard Ellis.

John Seerey-Lester is a master artist, author, instructor, celebrated outdoorsman and dedicated conservationist. John has been recognized for his conservation work as far back as 1984, when he received a Commendation from HRH Prince Phillip for his work in conservation. More recently John was invited to become a member of the International Order of St. Hubertus and was Knighted by His Imperial and Royal Highness Archduke Andreas of Austria. For more than four decades, John has generously supported a range of conservation organizations through his art and his fine art prints, helping to fundraise millions of dollars for the cause. John’s images have a mysterious and mystical appeal, directly related to his ability to paint the unusual and instill a sense of anticipation in the viewer. His skill in painting mist and snow, human and wildlife interaction, and animals in subdued light in their natural habitat, has established him as one of the most sought after artists the genre has ever seen. John continues to work on his painting series of historical hunting scenes and story-telling through his writings, of human-wildlife interaction at the formative days of the conservation movement.

A highly accomplished artist and instructor, Suzie is a dedicated conservationist in the field as well as through her art. In addition to being an ardent supporter of AFC, Suzie has supported a wide range of conservation organizations. Suzie is licensed by the State of Florida as a Marine Turtle Rescue Personnel and received the President’s Volunteer Service Award for her work with Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Florida. She has spent many hours on the beaches of Florida protecting the nesting sites of marine turtles. As a diving instructor, Suzie traveled around the world to teach diving. While working for the CIA, she taught CIA agents, Secret Service Agents, US Marshals, FBI Agents and other law enforcement personnel how to dive. Traveling gave Suzie the opportunity to see extraordinary creatures up close, which she has captured in her paintings. In 2006, her book “My Painting is Done - Now What Do I Do?” was published an is an important read for artists looking to market their work.

AFC’s Simon Combes Conservation Award is the most prestigious award and highest honour AFC presents to an artist member who has shown artistic excellence and extraordinary contributions to the conservation cause, exemplifying the same qualities as the award’s namesake.  A prominent member of AFC, Simon Combes was Project Director of the Kenya chapter of the Rhino Rescue Trust, an organization founded in 1985 to protect endangered species from being poached, and to help the communities surrounding Lake Nakuru National Park affected by wildlife conflicts. On December 12th, 2004, Simon was tragically killed by a charging Cape buffalo while hiking near his home in Kenya.

John and Suzie Seerey-Lester will be recognized during the Artists for Conservation Festival Gala in front of a VIP crowd on September 26th, 2014 in Vancouver, BC.

Learn more about John and Suzie Seerey-Lester through his AFC website at

Artists for Conservation
Artists for Conservation (AFC) is the world's leading group of artists supporting the environment. Founded in 1997, the non-profit organization comprises a membership of 500 of the world's most gifted nature artists from 27 countries, across five continents. Dedicated to nurture, promote and leverage its world-class community of artists in support of our natural world, AFC drives its mission through three key programs: Art & Environmental Education; Field Work & Research; and Artist Development. The Artists for Conservation Festival is AFC's annual flagship initiative to showcase, support and further these programs. For more information, visit

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