Friday, November 13, 2009

Remembering Maeveen

Posted By on Fri, Nov 13, 2009 at 10:00 AM

Reporter Tony Davis has a lovely remembrance of Maeveen Behan in today's Star:

Maeveen Marie Behan was a renaissance woman whose drive to protect the Sonoran Desert was fed by love and a sense of justice.

She was a lawyer who knew that the best way to reach people on a wonkish subject such as the Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan was by telling stories.

She was a thirsty learner who earned three degrees but knew little about the Endangered Species Act until she started putting it into practice in 1998. Three years later, she taught it to lawyers at a continuing-education class. She also was an unsung visionary, shunning publicity as a top aide to County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry.

Together, those traits allowed her to change the face of Pima County, friends, family members and colleagues said after her death of cancer last week at age 48.

Behan worked relentlessly to craft Pima County's Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan, but, as Tony notes, she was very publicity shy. I tried several times to persuade her to agree to a profile, but she always demurred. It wasn't her thing.

The community owes a tremendous debt to this unsung hero of the Southwest.

Maeveen, you'll be missed. Thanks for all you did.


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