Conservation advocate Daisy Lee Andersen Bitter wins Land at Heart Award

Editor’s note: The story has been updated to correct the spelling in the headline of Daisy Lee Andersen Bitter’s maiden name and to also note that she and her late husband bought a homestead, but were not original homesteaders.

Conservation advocate Daisy Lee Andersen Bitter, master gardener, peony farmer and honored science teacher, has a new award to add to her list of accomplishments. Now in her 90s, the Alaska Women’s Hall of Fame member has been named this year’s Land at Heart Award winner by the Kachemak Heritage Land Trust, which Bitter also had a hand in forming.

The honor was presented Saturday, Oct. 13, at the annual Open Spaces and Wild Places Gala, a fundraising event for the land trust. The award is given for “distinguished contributions to land conservation on the Kenai Peninsula,” according to a release from the trust.

Bitter was a founding board member of the land trust, and spoke of how the organization came to be as she accepted the award at Wasabi’s Bistro during the gala. The KHLT was the first land trust in the state of Alaska, Bitter said, and was made possible only after its founders worked to get the necessary legislation passed that would allow and support it.

Bitter’s reach in the community is wide. She’s also volunteered for or been involved with: Pioneers of Alaska, the Alaska Native Plant Society, the Homer Senior Citizens, Homer/Kachemak Bay Rotary, South Peninsula Hospital, the South Peninsula Sportsmen’s Association, the Homer Chamber of Commerce, the Kenai Peninsula School District and the Homer Foundation.

Former winners of the Land at Heart Award include:

2014 — Lynn Whitmore

2015 — Toby Tyler

2016 — Ed Bailey and Nina Faust

2017 — Carmen and Conrad Field

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