NEW CITY – County Executive Ed Day and the Division of Environmental Resources presented the 25th County Executive’s Outstanding Environmental Volunteer Award to Rockland County Legislator and resident Harriet Cornell during a ceremony at Kennedy Dells County Park in New City.
“This year’s winner, Harriet Cornell, has been a passionate advocate for our environment and is extremely deserving of this award,” said County Executive Ed Day. “Legislator Cornell worked with my office to create and then chair the Rockland County Task Force on Water Resources Management. The Task Force studied local data, performed outreach to regional stakeholders and ultimately created a Comprehensive Water Conservation and Implementation Plan. Legislator Cornell also worked extensively to stop a proposed desalination plant from being built along the Hudson River.”
While Legislator Cornell’s main involvement and advocacy has been through the County Legislature where she serves as Chair of the Environmental Committee, she has volunteered as a member of the Hudson Valley Greenway Conservancy, was a board member of the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, and worked with the County Executive to re-establish Rockland’s Open Space Preservation and Acquisition program which was originally launched in 1999 and allowed for 31 individual properties amounting to 1,204 acres of land to be acquired and preserved.
Her work also enabled the involvement of dozens of volunteer organizations and hundreds of local volunteers, most recently hosting a virtual meeting about PFOA and PFOS.
“Legislator Cornell’s ideas and advocacy have led to incredibly positive change in our county, and we have been lucky to have her in our corner on numerous occasions,” said County Executive Day. “Cornell has been a Rockland County Legislator since 1984 and has consistently gone above and beyond in service to local residents.”
A Pink Dogwood tree was planted in her honor at Kennedy Dells County Park.
Outstanding Environmental Volunteer Award Winner Harriet Cornell was grateful for the recognition saying in part, “I am overcome really, truly. I never expected it. Most of the people in the past had been people in the community and I’m just really honored so thank you very much.”
“Rockland and all of New York State are extremely lucky to have a leader and advocate like Harriet Cornell watching out for our natural environment. And so, on behalf of the people of Rockland, and the future generations of Rocklanders to come, I thank you for your dedication and hard work preserving and protecting this County,” concluded County Executive Day.