NOTL gives awards to two environment volunteers

Friends of One Mile Creek (FOMC) congratulates the two citizens recognized by the Town of Niagara on the Lake for their contribution to protecting the environment. At the June 10 Council meeting, Lord Mayor Volunteer Awards in seven categories were presented to 15 citizens, including Sandra O’Connor and Finn Madsen, for their contributions to the community.

“It’s the volunteers who make NOTL a special community,” says Lord Mayor Betty Disero.

O’Connor is involved with the Niagara-on-the-Lake Conservancy and Madsen with the Harmony Residents group. [To be clear, neither individual is involved with FOMC; however, we think it is important to salute the accomplishments of other local groups focused on the environment.] Reporting on all the volunteers is available on local newspaper websites: The NOTL Local and The Lake Report.

The Town provided the following background about the two recognized for their contributions to protecting the environment:

Sandra O’Connor

Councillor Allan Bisback and Lord Mayor Betty Disero present Sandra O’Connor with an environmental award for her work with the NOTL Conservancy on the Town’s Tree Bylaw initiative, and with the Preservation of Agriculture Lands Society. (Photos: Penny Coles at The NOTL Local)

In 2015, the board of the Niagara-on-the-Lake Conservancy asked Sandra O’Connor to chair an Urban Tree By-law initiative on private property, and she has led the work on this extremely important environmental issue since then. She has spent her time seeking input from community associations, distributing information. She has worked tirelessly in pursuit of this goal, galvanized support and developed relevant and well-researched documents.

In addition to this environmental initiative, Sandra serves as a board member of the Preservation of Agricultural Lands Society (PALS), an organization dedicated to protecting the unique fruit lands and supporting Niagara’s farmers and fruit industry, and promoting food land preservation.

During her tenure she has supported the need for a Niagara Tender Fruit Land easement program to help the farmers and preserve the necessary, and extremely limited tender fruit land base. Sandra has also helped PALS update its educational materials regarding Niagara’s unique history of fruit farming since 1792.

Sandra’s background in physical geography and conservation laid the foundation for her dedicated support of the environment and we appreciate all of her efforts to make Niagara-on-the-Lake a more environmentally conscious Town.

Finn Madsen

Councillor Allan Bisback and Lord Mayor Betty Disero present an environmental award to Finn Madsen of the Harmony Residents group.

Finn Madsen has been involved in the community for many years. He joined the Board of the Harmony Residents group in 2007, and has been the chairman since 2012. He was also a member of the UNESCO Committee and Communities in Bloom Committee for the Town.

Finn strongly believes the Lakeshore Road property owned by Parks Canada should be preserved and protected and that there is an opportunity not only to create a legacy for NOTL residents and visitors alike but also, a place for young children who are our future.

Over the years he has spent countless hours meeting with and doing presentations on a local, municipal, regional and federal level. He has recruited several knowledgeable and capable board members and vice chair, who will continue his vision as he is stepping down as chairperson.

Finn has always worked in the background never taking recognition for his time and effort. He has always ensured someone else gets the recognition that they deserved. However, we are pleased to take this time to recognize Finn for all his hard work.

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