A Fijian native who spent his life documenting plant diversity in Fiji is the Seacology Foundation's 1998 Conservationist of the Year award.

Saula Vodonaivalu, of Suva, Fiji, will be given a medal and $2,500 Sept. 21 at a ceremony at Red Butte Gardens in Salt Lake City. The program, sponsored by Nature's Way, will include a slide show on Fiji's biodiversity by Paddy Ryan, a noted author and photojournalist from New Zealand."(Vodonaivalu) has personally discovered an entire genera of palms, the botanical equivalent of an archeologist discovering an entire city," said Paul Alan Cox, foundation chairman and Brigham Young University professor.

The Springville-based Seacology Foundation seeks to protect island rain forests and cultures.