Renata von Tscharner honored at retirement gala

 

The Cambridge Chronicle

Renata von Tscharner and French Consul Valery Freland, who accepted the Urban River Champion Award on behalf of Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo. [Courtesy photo/Paige Brown Photography]

Editor’s note: The following was submitted by the Charles River Conservancy:

Annenberg Hall of Harvard University is famous for Hogwarts-esque architecture, but on Saturday, June 2, it wasn’t Harry on his broomstick flying through the air, but a puppet of Renata von Tscharner, founder of the Charles River Conservancy, on her bicycle in her signature yellow jacket.

The 19th Century wooden space hosted over 300 friends, family and parkland supporters attending the Conservancy’s Ribbon of Blue, Ribbon of Green gala marking von Tscharner’s retirement and the inauguration of the new executive director, Laura Jasinski. The celebration honored von Tscharner’s 18 years of leadership and accomplishments, and rallied support for the future of the organization.

The event program was unique and whimsical, with various artistic elements woven into the evening. Guests could meet and take pictures with Sariel the Charles River mermaid during the reception before a procession of large blue and green banners led guests into Annenberg Hall. After dinner and the program, guests got out of their seats for participatory singing and dancing led by Revels and the Elixir band.

“It was a beautiful night in a picturesque location,” said C.A. Webb, president of the Kendall Square Association. “The Ribbon of Blue, Ribbon of Green gala was definitely one of the most memorable events I have attended.”

Boston City councilor Michelle Wu served as MC, and DCR Commissioner Leo Roy spoke about the importance of the partnership between the Conservancy and the state.

The gala program also honored the urban river swimming success of Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo with the presentation of The Urban River Champion Award. French Consul Valéry Freland accepted the award on her behalf. The award recognized her innovative work launching urban river swimming in the Bassin de la Villette that flows into the river Seine, which serves as a major inspiration for the Conservancy’s urban swimming work.

The event raised over $800,000 for the future of the Charles River Conservancy and their mission to make the urban riverfront parks more active, attractive and accessible.

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