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Thank You to those who helped
Tenafly Nature Center Celebrate at our 2023 Annual Dinner

We thank everyone who joined and supported us for the evenings festivities honoring

Jon Warms

Recipient of the Founders’ Award for Conservation

Jane Murphy

Recipient of the Volunteer of the Year Award

Eve Bolkin and Abigail Kushman

Recipients of the Community Partner Award

On the evening of Arbor Day (April 28) over 140 people, including the four honorees, joined the board of the Tenafly Nature Center Association to celebrate those in the community that speak for the trees at the Knickerbocker Country Club at the sold out 2023 Annual Dinner.

The 2023 Annual Dinner was a fun filled evening that brought elements of the nature center into the event. As guest arrived to the live music of the Kimberly Hawkey Trio, TNC staff proudly featured several of the Animal Ambassadors through out the cocktail hour. As guests sat down to enjoy their first course, after the cocktail hour, one TNC educator featured fun quizzical questions about the animals that had been featured for guests to get an up close look at and learn about.  With native plant centerpieces colorfully created by students and staff of the forest school and topical stained glass made by one of TNC's Staff members. The evening was one that was infused with a celebration of nature, community and education. 

Peter Emmi, TNC's Board President gave a brief overview about some of the past years accomplishments including, the restoration of the east side of the main trail (after damage inflicted by Tropical Storm Ida), the many grants awarded to help further our educational opportunities into low to moderate income schools and for low income households, and the grant received by New Jersey Department of Tourism thanks to Stacy Esser Group, Honda of Tenafly, Bergen County Camera, and Touchstone Computer Systems to update our website and provide TNC with more items that can be used to get the word out about the nature center and the town of Tenafly.

Then after a brief video highlighting what makes TNC so special, TNC's executive director, Debora Davidson spoke about future goals and projects. 

What became most clear throughout 2020-2022 was the real need to continue our endeavors to make TNC truly accessible to all. We have seen elderly individuals come up on a daily basis and not be able to go much further than our picnic area. We have watched families with very young children, many still in strollers, having a hard time making it around even our shortest trail. Student and adult groups with physical disabilities do not get the full benefit of some of our programing, as they were not able to access the forest and trails in the same fashion as their classmates. All of these limitations highlight a need for accessibility. With one composting restroom (that many would agree needs to be updated) being the only facility option for any of these individuals, our infrastructure does not provide the necessary support for everyone in our community. Therefore last year the board, with support from the Mayor and Council brought in the services of NV5, a leader and provider of professional and technical engineering and consulting solutions, to scout the yellow trail loop, our closest and most utilized trail, to identify what accessibility measures could be added to at least make one of our trails fully accessible for all. We have received the initial report that highlighted the possibilities- please take the time to look it over at the table in the other room if you haven’t already. Our hope is to officially start this project and work with local leaders and community members to create something that benefits people of all abilities and ages. If you are interested in learning more or helping with this project, please reach out to me via email in the next week as we coordinate our next steps.

In addition Ms. Davidson spoke about some more short term projects such as a new pavilion for the campfire ring education space project, and the seasonal butterfly house exhibit. Both projects need funding and are looking for support. You can learn more by clicking on the links provided.

Overall The event was a great success, attracting supporters to bid on a variety of silent auction items while enjoying cocktails. The evening served as a lovely way for us to celebrate our hardworking staff, volunteers, supporters, and to honor Jon Warms, Jane Murphy, Eve Bolkin, and Abigail Kushman for their hard work and dedication into making Tenafly and the nature center such a special place.

This night would not have been possible without our attendees and supporters who believe in our mission.

Thanks to TNC’s Board of Trustees, for their ongoing dedication and support.

Thank you to our sponsors

Title Sponsors


Platinum Sponsors

Gaurav and Elizabeth Seth

Gold Sponsors

The Balakian Family

Alan Warms and Family

Silver Sponsors

Ira and Shelly Taub

Bronze Sponsors

Brightview Senior Living

Chad Coleman and Jolie Lau
Miranda & Hyuk Lee
Wendi Hoeben Thompson

The Henry & Marilyn Taub Foundation

Andrew J Mikesh and Carol A Schults

Olga Milanos

David and Elaine Rho

Nini Wong

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the evening's celebration

Non-attending Donations

If you were unable to attend but would still like to support Tenafly Nature Center's fundraising efforts, please consider making a non-attending donation.

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