WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. — Paul Gallay is the new president of Riverkeeper of New York City and Hudson Valley.
Gallay grew up fishing in the Kensico Reservoir and the Saw Mill River. Protected watershed lands were his gateway to nature. Later, he studied politics and law, and worked for the state Attorney General's Office and Department of Environmental Conservation, Westchester Land Trust and Maine Coast Heritage Trust. Gallay also taught environmental law at Williams College, Clarkson University and several law schools.
"I've spent 30 years in environmental law and worked with communities throughout New York City and the Hudson Valley, to protect our unique natural heritage." said Gallay. Of his law school training Gallay said, "While law training is essential, it's the community engagement experience that really drives the work that we do at Riverkeeper."
Gallay had worked for 13 years with the state attorney general and DEC but decided that Westchester Land Trust brought him back to where he grew up and first connected with the natural world. "It was a wonderful opportunity to focus attention on the need to protect nature in our own backyard," said Gallay.
"Lewisboro was where we did our first big acquisition project -- the Houlihan property became the Old Field Preserve," said Gallay. "Then, we did an even bigger purchase, transforming the Bell property into the Leon Levy Preserve. Folks in Lewisboro really know how to get things done when it comes to preserving our shared natural heritage."
The Riverkeeper and the modern environmental movement got their start in the Hudson Highlands, near Bear Mountain, 50 years ago. "Since then, so much has been done to assure we can safely fish, swim and drink the water," said Gallay.
The mission of Gallay as Riverkeeper "is to keep that momentum building so the Hudson River and our drinking water will always be resources we can cherish and be proud of."
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