It was my first week as editor of the Syosset-Jericho Tribune. I was so excited, but nervous at the same time. It was my second day working for Anton Community Newspapers and my predecessor, Brad Barth, had set up an interview for me with Joe Lorintz.
"Joe who?" I thought. What will I talk to him about? Little did I know how much information Joe had and how many organizations he volunteered for. At this time, my assignment was to write an article about Joe being named the Sierra Club's 1999 Environmentalist of the Year.
Once at his office, I felt at ease - like we had known each other for years. That's how it has been ever since. Joe has often helped me understand the many environmental and civic issues concerning the communities this newspaper covers and he has always done so in a non-partisan way. His assistance has been invaluable.
Unfortunately, working for the betterment of environmental causes is done, in many instances, on a volunteer basis. It is difficult for some groups to find the dedication that Joe has given to the many organizations he volunteers for. It is a shame when someone like Joe, who does so much for the environment and his local community without making any money on it (rather actually sacrificing money and time with his family and friends) gets his name dragged through the mud.
The recent advertising campaign initiated by Clifford Eisler, husband of Town of Oyster Bay Councilwoman Bonnie Eisler, on behalf of the new entity The Society to Save the Underhill property, of which he is president, has taken the focus off of the main issue - to preserve the Underhill property.
The advertisements personally target Joe, who was instrumental in founding the Society to Preserve Underhill, and who has been working to preserve the property for many years. He has nothing to gain financially by working toward this cause - he is doing it for the satisfaction that acres of pristine land and a Special Groundwater Protection Area will be preserved for his children and one day grandchildren to enjoy.
Councilwoman Bonnie Eisler has also worked hard in the effort to preserve the Underhill property as well as the other limited areas of open space that Nassau County still possesses. It's unfortunate that these two entities are no longer united when they would benefit so much from each other's help.
The Lorintz family is very involved in the Jericho community and Jericho should feel fortunate to have them. On behalf of the Syosset Jericho Tribune - thank you Joe and the entire Lorintz family for your sacrifices to make this a better place to live.