The Livingston County Environmental Management Council (EMC) has chosen Richard D. Thomas to receive this year’s Livingston County Earth Day Award. This annual award is presented to an individual or organization to recognize outstanding achievements that are directed to help preserve, improve, or educate about the Livingston County environment. Earth Day is a global event, it is celebrated on April 22, and this year marks the 52nd anniversary.
The EMC recognizes Mr. Thomas for his long-term commitment to the health and protection of the natural resources in Livingston County. During Mr. Thomas’ 32-year professional career in environmental law enforcement with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, he was charged with protecting the natural resources of 11 counties in Western NY, including Livingston County.
The EMC notes that Mr. Thomas is also known locally for land conservation and protection of his forever-wild 23-acre nature preserve, White Hawk Marsh, and the family Walnut Woods Farm, which he maintains under an active conservation plan. These thriving habitats in the Town of Caledonia are rich with wildlife, pollinators and trees. As a public speaker, he inspires and educates students and the community on natural resource conservation, and makes use of these areas for hands-on learning.
The EMC was pleased that, upon retirement, Mr. Thomas has continued his passion for environmental appreciation and knowledge through his captivating professional photography business. He shares his expansive photographic collection with others, reaching far and wide.
During the Earth Day Award presentation, Mr. Thomas recognized Livingston County for its environmental leadership. In appreciation, Mr. Thomas presented the Board of Supervisors with a framed print of a majestic bald eagle that he photographed in Caledonia.
The EMC commends the Mr. Thomas for his impressive work on behalf of Livingston County. His achievements have contributed to the protection and conservation of Livingston County’s natural resources and to the quality of life for our residents.