Sunday, June 13, 2010

Garden Club of America Citation

Thanks to all of you in the local community for supporting my work with our trees and our landscape heritage. I am honored to have been given an award by the Garden Club of America!

Club Horticulture Commendation

For your outstanding work at The McVickar House, your dedication to protecting Irvington’s trees, and your leadership in promoting and protecting urban forests.


The original letter from the local Irvington Chapter reads as follows:

Mrs. Ellen Peterson
Garden Club of America
14 East 60th Street, 3rd Floor
New York NY 10022

Dear Ellen:

On behalf of the Garden Club of Irvington-on-Hudson, it is my pleasure to nominate Mark Gilliland for the Club Horticulture Commendation. Mark is an Irvington resident and landscape designer who has donated a great deal of time over the last several years working for the protection of Irvington’s trees, pesticide free gardening, and beautification of our downtown area.

In 2002, when the Irvington Historical Society was restoring and renovating our village’s second oldest surviving structure (the McVickar house, built on Main Street in 1853) Mark volunteered to design the gardens. He researched landscape design of the period, the particular features of that property, and the plants used in that era. The eco-friendly gardens he created and implemented helped the McVickar House to receive a 2008 AIA Citation Award in the category of Historic Restoration/Adaptive Reuse.

Mark has also been very active in preserving and protecting Irvington’s trees. He has been on the village Tree Commission for several years, and as Chairman has lead a restructuring and reframing of the tree statute and its implementation. Club members on the Commission say he has been an inspiring leader.

Mark has also been a leader in fighting our power company’s poor pruning practices as they work to keep electric lines free from falling trees and limbs. In particular, he organized - overnight - a protest of their planned pruning of an allee of Sycamore trees at the south entrance to the village, on Route 9/Broadway. When the Con Ed and tree company trucks arrived, there was a crowd of people to greet them. The upshot of this was that they came back another day, with better crews and supervision, and Mark on hand, to do a much less intrusive job. Mark has carried this last endeavor beyond Irvington, to our town and county, and is working hard to revise Con Ed’s practices in the entire region.

For all these reasons, and more, we sincerely hope you will approve Mark Gilliland for the Club Horticulture Commendation. The citation should read:

For your outstanding work at The McVickar House, your dedication to protecting Irvington’s trees, and your leadership in promoting and protecting urban forests.

A copy of the Club Award Form accompanies this letter. Thank you for your consideration.


Sincerely yours,


Gerry Gilmartin
Awards Chairman
Garden Club of Irvington

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