Geary Britton-Simmons Gets Premier Golden Eagle Award
Three children also received first-ever awards during Eastside Audubon's annual volunteer celebration in April.
Morgan Gresky, age 9, and sisters Julia and Naina Rajkhowa, ages 7 and 5, received Junior Volunteer certificates for their volunteer efforts in 2013.
It was the first time the chapter has given the Golden Eagle Award and Junior Volunteer Awards.
Photo: Julia Rajkhowa, Morgan Gresky, and Naina Rajkhowa, by Mick Thompson
A Run of Record-Breaking Plant Sales
Geary was honored for managing the EAS Pacific Northwest Native Plant Sale through four years of successive growth from 2010 through 2013.
Noting that the Golden Eagle Award was created to celebrate an EAS member who “soars above the rest of us,” chapter president Andy McCormick said that Geary “gave tirelessly of his knowledge, time, talents, and vision for the benefit of Eastside Audubon members and others who live in the chapter’s service area and beyond.”
The sale resulted in an enormous contribution to the improvement of habitat for wildlife, Andy said. Geary also has donated plants from his home nursery for projects to replace invasive plant species with natives.
Credit to the Volunteers
On receiving the award, Geary said, “It really should go to everyone here who volunteered.” He said he has 70 names in his volunteer database.
He especially thanked Melinda Bronsdon, Margaret Lie, and Jill Keeney for their advice and organizational help.
He also gave credit to former EAS executive director Jan McGruder, saying, “There would not have been a sale if not for her.”
Geary said he remains ready to train anyone who would like to take over the management of the plant sale. He resigned for health reasons after last year’s event.
Andy said the Golden Eagle Award was conceived by the Conservation Committee as an occasional and not necessarily an annual honor, to be given when it’s time to recognize an EAS member who has “gone above and beyond.”
And Thanks for Dinner
Diane Crestanello, Linda Gresky, Jill Keeney, and Dora Rajkhowa organized the potluck dinner and were responsible for charming place cards, spring-y centerpieces, and ample food and drink. Tim Hall regaled volunteers with his humorous, old-timer music. Thanks to all of them for a very enjoyable evening.
Photo: Geary Britton-Simmons, by Mick Thompson