Michael Feller Honored With The Thomas Stofka Award
The Thomas Stofka Award, now in its ninth year, recognizes Parkies who have dedicated themselves to New York City’s trees and natural areas. Michael Feller is an embodiment of this statement.
Michael started with NYC Parks on May 16, 1983 as an Urban Park Ranger and was an initial member of the Natural Resources Group. In both those roles, he provided countless tours to visitors and Parkies, was responsible for major restorations at the Paerdegat Basin, Gerritsen Bay and White Island, led the establishment of the Forever Wild Program, and contributed to the restoration of NYC Parks’ natural areas.
Michael has become a Senior Naturalist within the Central Forestry, Horticulture, and Natural Resources Unit. In this role, he is responsible for providing in-house consulting services related to external projects including those with Parks Capital Division, the Army Corps of Engineers, NYS DEC and other institutions. He also can be seen responding to oil spills at all hours of the day or night, leading surveys regarding the breeding of birds and harbor herons, and utilizing his talented photography skills to document and raise awareness of New York City’s precious natural resources.
Having grown up in Brooklyn, Michael feels a strong connection between himself and the well-being of his community. From its local foods to its expansive parklands, Brooklyn has always held a special place in Michael’s heart. His contribution to the borough and the city is a lifetime dedicated to the protection, restoration, and stewardship of our parkland.
Michael’s career at Parks has resulted in the conservation, restoration, and management of tens of thousands of acres of New York City’s natural areas. Without him and his efforts, our City would not be nearly as bio-diverse, as ecologically rich, or as beautiful as it is today.
Michael is a former Annual Award recipient as he received the Stubbs Davis Award in 1996. However, for his unwavering dedication to the protection and conservation of New York City’s trees and natural areas, Michael is this year's recipient of the Thomas Stofka Award.
The late Thomas Stofka worked with Parks for more than 25 years, serving as Director of Brooklyn Forestry.
“There are two kinds of light--the glow that illuminates, and the glare that obscures.”
(1894 - 1961)