JOHN Tate is more of a behind the scenes guy, but after years of dedication to the Shoalhaven River, Landcare couldn’t help but shine a little recognition his way.
The Longreach resident and Shoalhaven Riverwatch member has been awarded the Individual Landcarer of the year award.
The award places him as one of the Southern Rivers Champions of the Catchment.
It recognises the outstanding contributions of people and groups who are working to improve the management of natural resources and a sustainable future in south-eastern NSW.
Mr Tate has been with Riverwatch for about 10 years, after members “managed” to vote him into the position as secretary at an AGM he visited.
“Despite living near the Shoalhaven River for 21 years I was pretty ignorant about the problems with the it before I became involved in Riverwatch,” he said.
“I started seeing the impacts of cattle grazing on river banks and the effects of boat wake.
“Over the last six years Riverwatch has been working with state and local governments to get a management plan in place for the Shoalhaven River.
He said although that plan is yet to be gazetted it’s an achievement the group is proud of.
Mr Tate was humble in his acceptance of the award saying he’s more impressed with the effort of those who nominated him.
“I get embarrassed by this award when I see people who devote so much time to the cause, I feel I don’t deserve it.
“The beauty of Riverwatch is we only need a few volunteers to make it work, however we could use some more at the moment.
“We meet once every two months, on the last Thursday of the month at 7pm in the library meeting room. Anyone interested can phone me on 44237755,” he said.