name: Nicole Halpin
hometown: Jackson Hole Wyoming
why she's a CosmoGIRL!: Nicole won the National Conservation Achievement
Award for raising $160,000 to bury a power line that was accidentally killing swans.
"In December 2000, my mom and I were driving into town, and I noticed the big white wing of a dead trumpeter swan sticking out of the snow. It made me sick to my stomach. I found out that it was the fifth swan to accidentally fly into that power line and break its neck -- but the power company couldn't afford to bury the cable. So I decided to raise the money myself. At first, I was shy about asking people for donations, but once I explained the situation to them and got the newspaper to write about it, they gave! One elementary school class from Colorado even sent $75 in change' In a year, I raised all the money, and the power company buried the mile-and-a-half stretch of line. Now when we drive by that spot, I smile because I helped make my town safe for the swans."