Winegrad to be honored for environmental efforts

September 10, 1995|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,Sun Staff Writer

Former state Sen. Gerald W. Winegrad, hailed as the environmental conscience of the legislature, doesn't need any more plaques for his walls, but he'll make room for the one he'll pick up today.

It's the first award in memory of conservationist Jan Hollmann and will be given annually to someone who "has made an exceptional contribution in the field of environmental education in Anne Arundel County," said Severn River Commission chairman A. L. Waldron.

"Environmental education is one of the most important aspects of long-term environmental protection," said Mr. Winegrad, who spent 16 years in the legislature and left last year.

"I was like the skunk at the garden party when I first started. By the time I finished, people wanted to co-sponsor bills with me," said the Annapolis resident.

These days he is teaching environmental policy at the University of Maryland College Park and giving lectures on environmental protection to everyone from kindergartners who cannot pronounce the words to the region's businessmen.

A committee that grew out of the Severn River Commission, of which Mrs. Hollmann was a member, decided this year to give an annual award in her memory.

"The inclination, of course, was to look for a good teacher. Then somebody suggested Gerry. He himself has done a wonderful job of educating the legislature and various commissions about the bay," said L. Eugene Cronin, the commission's first chairman and head of the award group.

Environmental leaders, county officials and representatives of the Maryland Environment and Natural Resources departments are expected to attend the public ceremony.

Mrs. Hollmann was 44 and planning to practice environmental law when she died of cancer in May 1990. She helped found the Severn River and South County land trusts; wrote a study for the Severn River Commission on environmental education needs; and worked on legislation to help protect the river.

The ceremony begins at 3 p.m. at Arlington Echo, the county school system's outdoor education center in Millersville.

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