DOYLESTOWN TOWNSHIP, PA — Doylestown Township on June 20 presented its Unsung Hero award to Jeannine Mitchell, a longtime member of the township’s Environmental Advisory Council.
According to the township, Mitchell has been a champion of environmental initiatives, spearheading numerous projects in the township, including the creation of an award-winning Native Plant Demonstration Garden at Central Park.
As a Master Gardener with the Penn State Extension, she also worked to certify township-owned properties as watershed-friendly.
EAC member Anne Woodbury, who nominated Mitchell for the award, commended Mitchell for the creation of the demonstration garden at Central Park and for leading by example.
“It’s not just a pretty garden. It’s an exemplar garden. And that’s a garden that can showcase native plants and can be used as a teaching tool,” said Woodbury of the demonstration garden. “Of course, this all makes sense if you know Jeannine. She is a longtime member of our township’s EAC and a retired educator.
“Jeannine got to work, along with her loyal brigade of volunteers – EAC members and Master Gardeners – and created a beautiful, expanding, educational garden of note,” said Woodbury. “And that is not just my opinion. It is a multi-award-winning garden. It has been cited by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and the Land Ethics Symposium.”
Jeannine Mitchell with her brigade of garden volunteers. (Doylestown Township)
The garden also provides a new “Nest” area for kids to gather and learn about plants, birds and pollinators, said Woodbury. “It makes it a special place just for kids to get introduced to gardens and to wildlife experiences.
“Jeannine has accomplished more in 10 years than most people do in 50 years,” said Woodbury. “She’s an amazing person. When Jeannine became chair, she got everyone active, motivated and excited about being on the EAC and believing that we could get things done.
“You’re a wonderful, wonderful person to work with. You’re a wonderful friend,” said Woodbury.
Barbara Lyons, the chair of the board of supervisors, joined members of Jeannine’s family as she presented her with the award.
“This is so fabulous. I am so appreciative,” said Jeannine. “And I hope all of you have had a chance to come down and walk through the garden. I hope that you enjoy it and that it keeps on getting better and better every year so all of us can enjoy it. I feel like, hero? Really, come on. I’m just a volunteer who wants to make things a little better.”