SF Rec & Park Celebrates Park Gardeners with William Hammond Hall Awards

SAN FRANCISCO – In partnership with the Laborer’s International Union of North America (LIUNA) Local 261, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Commission and Department hosted the 8th Annual William Hammond Hall Awards June 22 at the TPC Harding Park Clubhouse. The awards honor the top professionals in gardening and horticulture and recognize the men and women who work day in and day out to make our parks clean and beautiful. This year’s event emcees were Supervisor Mark Farrell and Assessor-Recorder Carmen Chu.

“Our city gardeners, arborists, park supervisors, and apprentices are essential to maintaining beautiful and safe parks,” said Theresa Foglio, Laborers Local 261 City Representative.  “For the City to recognize and honor their work, it’s really extraordinary.”

Those honored are responsible for the horticultural care and maintenance of San Francisco parklands. The award is named for William Hammond Hall, who in the 1870s, became the city’s first Park Superintendent. Hall worked to improve Golden Gate Park by planting trees and designing pathways for the pleasure of visitors and preservation of wildlife.

“The history of the City Gardeners, their Departments, and their Union is rich with accomplishment and pride,” said Recreation and Park Commissioner Tom Harrison. “I am personally so grateful that one day per year, our City through its leadership recognizes the value and importance of this particular staff to citizens we serve and the assets we maintain.”

Today the Recreation and Park Department stewards more than 220 parks, playgrounds, and open spaces, such as the Marina Yacht Harbor, the San Francisco Zoo, and the Lake Merced Complex as well as two outside the city limits—Sharp Park in Pacifica and Camp Mather in the high Sierras.

“I’m humbled by the tremendous work that our gardeners are doing on a daily basis to preserve our parks for all of our visitors,” said Phil Ginsburg, General Manager of San Francisco Recreation and Park Department. “Akin to William Hammond Hall, one of the original visionaries, we could not have the incredible system we do without our boots on the ground.”

The Award was presented to the following gardeners for their outstanding work in keeping San Francisco Parks clean and beautiful: Nolen Edmonston, Lisa Graves, John Johnson, Lisa Martin, John Miller, Cesar Montalvo, Hai Ye Qin, John Raulli, Mike Roche, Patrick Weible, Charlie Williams, and Joel Young.

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