Greenway pioneer receives top environmental honor

July 13, 2010

Mountains to Sound Greenway pioneer Ted Thomsen — “the unsung hero” behind the 101-mile greenbelt — received the highest environmental honor in Issaquah in a City Hall ceremony last week.

The late Thomsen received the Ruth Kees Award for a Sustainable Community — the prize named for the late environmentalist, a tireless advocate for open space preservation. The city selected Thomsen for the yearslong effort to establish a billboard-free greenbelt from Seattle to Central Washington along Interstate 90.

Cynthia Welti, Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust executive director, nominated Thomsen for the honor.

“He was essential to bringing the greenway vision to fruition,” she recalled in the nomination. “Ted is the unsung hero of the launch of this tremendous coalition effort.”

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Environmentalists wait to learn fate of Lake Sammamish kokanee

February 23, 2010

Hans Berge, King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks biologist, holds kokanee salmon retrieved from Lewis Creek during a restoration project. Contributed

Conservationists continue to await a decision by the federal government about the status of the dwindling Lake Sammamish kokanee salmon — years after rules required the federal government to act.

Environmentalists and local government officials estimate the population of adult kokanee at a few hundred. Before a species can receive protection under the Endangered Species Act, the animal or plant must be placed on the federal list of threatened endangered species.

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Help clean up Timberlake Park Saturday

May 29, 2009

NEW — 10:40 p.m. May 29, 2009

Volunteers from Save Lake Sammamish will remove English ivy and other invasive plant species at Timberlake Park Saturday.

The cleanup comes on the heels of a successful May 2 cleanup hosted by the organization, the city and Mountains to Sound Greenway.

The event is from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Volunteers can choose to stay for the entire event or sign up to work a half-day. Register for the event here.

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Honor Ruth Kees during creek cleanup Sunday

May 27, 2009

NEW — 6 a.m. May 27, 2009

Save Lake Sammamish will honor late Issaquah environmentalist Ruth Kees with a workday along the creek that bears her name. Volunteers will gather May 31 to clear invasive plant species from the banks of Kees Creek in south Issaquah.

Join Save Lake Sammamish volunteers at Southeast 98th Place on 238th Way Southeast between 1 and 4 p.m. Sunday. Tools, gloves and refreshments will be available. Organizers said they would appreciate for volunteers to RSVP, but it’s not required. RSVP by e-mailing

Kees died May 6 after suffering a broken hip several days earlier. She was 84.

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City seeks nominations for environmental award

January 19, 2009

Ruth KeesRuth Kees

City officials are preparing to honor a local environmentalist and activist by accepting nominations for the 2009 Ruth Kees Environmental Award for a Sustainable Community.

Since its creation in 2003, the award has been handed out to individuals who have worked within the community to preserve Issaquah’s natural resources. Read more

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Preservation group honors local members

December 22, 2008

Several local people were given awards at the Dec. 10 Bellevue-Issaquah Chapter of Trout Unlimited annual awards banquet at the Issaquah Brew House.

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