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Honoring the consummate volunteer: Ed Shillingburg is praised by colleagues

Ed Shillingburg is stepping down as a member of two town committees.

But Community Preservation Fund Advisory Board Chairman Gordon Gooding said at Monday morning’s meeting that it won’t stop him from calling Mr. Shillingburg whenever he needs advice, particularly on stewardship plans for various properties the town acquires to preserve.

For the past four years, Mr. Shillingburg, who also has been a member of the Water Quality Improvement Advisory Board, has guided the process of developing many of the plans that ensure proper maintenance of sites aquired by the town for preservation.

“You’ll always  be part of this team,” Mr. Gooding told Mr. Shillingburg, thanking him for his “unbelievable contributions” to the committee and town.

Jim Dougherty, who served 10 years as town supervisor, called Mr. Shillingburg “one of Shelter Island’s most precious assets.”

Noting the contributions of Mr. Shillingburg and his late wife Patricia made through the years writing about the town’s history, Mr. Dougherty said they helped bring focus to “what a special place Shelter Island is.”

Councilman Jim Colligan called Mr. Shillingburg “energetic, hardworking and lovable” and said he appreciates the “insights, wisdom and guidance” Mr. Shillingburg brought to the town.

Volunteerism is the backbone of Shelter Island, Councilman Albert Dickson said.“You represent the consummate contributor to our community” and belong in the Shelter Island Volunteer Hall of Fame, he added.

Greg Toner, a colleague of Mr. Shillingburg’s on the Water Quality Improvement Advisory Board, said he always knew his friend would bring careful analysis and sage advice to the decisions of that committee.

Lori Beard Raymond, the permits examiner for the Building Department, said she learned a great deal from Mr. Shillingburg and said she will miss him.

“You are a joy to work with,” said CPF Advisory Board colleague Kathleen Gerard. Other CPF colleagues — Albert Brayson, Joe Denny and Chuck Kraus — thanked him for all of his work, with Mr. Brayson adding he has always appreciated Mr. Shillingburg’s warmth.

“It was a pleasure getting to know you,” added Melanie Cirillo of the Peconic Land Trust, an organization that has helped fund some acquisitions and brought counsel to the advisory board.

By the Jan. 11 meeting, Mr. Gooding told the committee, he expects to release the names of the people who have expressed interest in joining the  Community Preservation Fund Advisory Board.