Cen­ter to present leadership award

The Review - - Front Page - A press re­lease from the Schuylkill Cen­ter

The Schuylkill Cen­ter will present its high­est honor, the Henry Meigs En­vi­ron­men­tal Leadership Award, to long­time com­mu­nity leader Kay Sykora, founder of the Manayunk De­vel­op­ment Corp. and Des­ti­na­tion Schuylkill River.

The award cer­e­mony will be held Thurs­day, Nov. 16, at 7 p.m. in the Schuylkill Cen­ter’s au­di­to­rium.

Dur­ing her time as ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Manayunk De­vel­op­ment Corp.n, Sykora cham­pi­oned the progress of the Schuylkill River Trail through Manayunk and Roxbor­ough, lead­ing the ef­fort to trans­form the canal tow­path into the River Trail over decades. The River Trail is nowone ofManayunk’s most beloved commu-

nity ameni­ties. She con­tin­ues this work through Des­ti­na­tion Schuylkill River, which strives to re-con­nect Manayunk to the Schuylkill River while restor­ing the canal.

A long­time res­i­dent of Roxbor­ough, Sykora co-founded Roxbor­ough Green, a com­mu­nity tree plant­ing and gar­den­ing project, and has been ac­tive in the Cen­tral Roxbor­ough Civic As­so­ci­a­tion over many years.

“Kay rec­og­nized that Manayunk’s trans­for­ma­tion would be el­e­vated by con­nect­ing to the River Trail and the river it­self,” said Mike Weil­bacher, the Schuylkill Cen­ter’s ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor. “As an ac­tive and en­gaged Roxbor­ough res­i­dent, Kay mod­els how vol­un­teers can im­pact their com­mu­ni­ties. She’s also — we’re happy to say — the first Roxbor­ough res­i­dent to win the award.”

At the event, Weil­bacher will high­light the cen­ter’s new plans for an up­dated con­nec­tion to the Schuylkill River Trail.

Af­ter the award cer­e­mony, Sykora will be joined by lo­cal plan­ning ex­perts in a panel dis­cus­sion on com­plet­ing Manayunk’s River Trail and im­prov­ing the canal and tow­path. The panel will be com­posed of the Bi­cy­cle Coali­tion of Greater Philadel­phia’s Sarah Clark Stu­art, ar­chi­tect and planner Robert Thomas, the Up­per Roxbor­ough Civic As­so­ci­a­tion’s Rich Gior­dano and Lower Me­rion planner Chris Leswing.

The award cer­e­mony will be­gin in the Schuylkill Cen­ter’s au­di­to­rium at 7 p.m. The town meet­ing will be fol­lowed by a re­cep­tion with Kay, the pan­elists and the com­mu­nity. The event is free and open to the public. The Schuylkill Cen­ter es­pe­cially en­cour­ages fre­quent users of the River Trail to con­trib­ute their voices to the town hall as the fu­ture of the tow­path is dis­cussed.

The Meigs En­vi­ron­men­tal Leadership Award rec­og­nizes out­stand­ing en­vi­ron­men­tal leadership in the Philadel­phia re­gion and over the last 12 years has been given to for­mer Gov. Ed Ren­dell, city Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor Mike DeBer­ar­di­nis, botanist Ann Fowler Rhoads and na­ture cen­ter founder Ca­role Wil­liamsGreen.

Henry Meigs, one of the Schuylkill Cen­ter’s founders and vi­sion­ar­ies, served on its board for more than 30 years, the long­est serv­ing trustee in its his­tory. Bin­ney Meigs, his son — and him­self a for­mer Schuylkill Cen­ter trustee — will present open­ing re­marks about his fa­ther’s legacy.

SUBMITTED PHOTO — SU­SAN BEARD DE­SIGN PHO­TOG­RA­PHY

Kay Sykora will re­ceive the Schuylkill Cen­ter’s Henry Meigs En­vi­ron­men­tal Leadership Award.

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