Salt Lake City – Representative Mike Noel has been awarded the 2016 Friend of the Trust Award, the School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA) and School Children’s Trust Section of the Utah State Board of Education announced today. Noel will receive the award Thursday, October 20, at a 9 AM assembly of students, educators, and community members at Kanab High School.
“Mike Noel is a true champion- perhaps the true champion- of the school trust lands and their mission” said Tim Donaldson, Director of the School Children’s Trust. “In recent decades, Utah’s school trust lands have been profitably managed and made a substantial difference in classrooms throughout the state. Representative Noel has been a tireless, passionate leader, one to whom the beneficiaries owe so much. For many years Mike Noel has worked very hard to reform the management of Utah’s 3.3 million acres of school trust lands, to help us overcome obstacles, and provide all of the resources that we can to benefit Utah students.”
On behalf of Utah’s public school system, the School Children’s Trust at the Utah State Board of Education advocates for proper fiduciary management of Utah’s trust lands and investment of the Permanent School Fund. SITLA manages Utah’s trust lands and deposits land revenue into Utah’s permanent funds, which total $2.16 billion. Interest and dividends from each fund are distributed to trust land beneficiaries and totaled $54.6 million this fiscal year. Past Friend of the Trust Award winners include the late State Senator Dennis Stowell, Margaret Bird, Representative Mel Brown, and the Utah State PTA.
“Throughout his influential tenure in the Utah legislature, Mike has supported and sponsored legislation to move our agency forward and help SITLA build the permanent funds, to the benefit of all Utahns” stated SITLA Director David Ure. “He also recognizes the important economic opportunities trust lands bring to communities in rural Utah.”
Contact: Tim Donaldson, Utah State Board of Education, 801.706.3925