COPD Foundation Wins “Best In Air” Award for Dedication to Reducing Regional Air Pollution

May 17, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. - May 17, 2017 - Regional air quality organization Clean Air Partners celebrated 20 years of dedication to improving the greater Baltimore-Washington region’s air quality at last night’s Annual Awards Celebration. Clean Air Partners has reinvigorated the celebration with the Best In Air Awards, honoring industry leaders COPD Foundation, Grid Alternatives, and Lyft for their exemplary commitment to decreasing air pollution and protecting public health. The Awards also recognized middle and high school students for their outstanding creativity as part of the On the Air education awards. The full list of Award winners can be found at

“This is a celebratory year for Clean Air Partners – you don’t turn 20 twice," says Jennifer Desimone of Clean Air Partners. “We wanted to take it up a notch and commend organizations and companies for their commitment to improving our region’s air quality and protecting the health of our residents. We nominated nearly 20 organizations and opened it up to public voting – we are honored to have the support from the incredible winners.”

The Most Valuable Partner (MVP) Award recognizes an organization that has made significant efforts to promote everyday actions to reduce air pollution and the impacts they have on climate change and public health. After a four week public voting period, the COPD Foundation secured the most votes in the MVP category.

The COPD Foundation provides services for those affected by the disease — past initiatives, including NASCAR Race to Green and the Clean Air Tree Planting Program have successfully encouraged the public to take action to reduce air pollution while helping individuals with COPD live a fulfilling life.

“We would like to thank Clean Air Partners for the opportunity to connect with organizations dedicated to improving air quality,” says Grace Anne Dorney Koppel, President of the COPD Foundation. “Clean air is central to our mission to help individuals who live with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an umbrella term for respiratory conditions that include emphysema, chronic bronchitis, and certain forms of asthma. As the third leading cause of death in the U.S., COPD affects nearly 30 million Americans. Improving the quality of our air must be a public health priority – because when you can’t breathe, nothing else matters.”

Pepco’s Edison Place Gallery served as an exceptional venue for more than one hundred guests who enjoyed networking with industry leaders, winners, and interactive demonstrations from Casey Trees, Pollinator Partnership, and Urban Jungle. Speakers and special guests included:

  • Tom Van Arsdall, Pollinator Partnership Director of Public Affairs. His advocacy efforts have been instrumental in the enactment of pollinator conservation and research provisions.
  • Brian O’Malley, Clean Air Partners Chair and President and CEO of Central Maryland Transportation Alliance. Brian advocates for improving transportation resources throughout metropolitan Baltimore.

About Clean Air Partners: Clean Air Partners is a public-private partnership that educates the greater metropolitan Baltimore-Washington region about the health risks associated with poor air quality and the impacts everyday actions have on the environment. For 20 years, Clean Air Partners has helped individuals and organizations take simple actions to reduce their impact on the environment and exposure to air pollution during unhealthy air quality days. Clean Air Partners’ Air Quality App is a free resource that provides air quality forecasts and real-time health notification. For more information and to download the app, visit