Thursday April 14, 2016
The highlight of the South Burlington Land Trust’s (SBLT) annual meeting on April 3 was the presentation of their annual award to longtime South Burlington resident Barbara Bull. An advocate for conservation and an outdoor enthusiast, Bull received recognition for her devotion to the principals that guide the SBLT.
The SBLT is dedicated to preserving South Burlington’s forests, wetlands, farmlands and other natural areas through landowner preservation agreements and other conservation efforts to maintain city residents’ high quality of life.
Prior to announcing the award, SBLT President Sarah Dopp reviewed the past year’s activities. These included organizing Green Up Day, providing input on the development of the new City Comprehensive Plan and Land Development Regulations, support of Common Roots with a grant to support the inaugural season of planting at Underwood, participation in CityFest 150, involvement with the activities of the Association of Vermont Conservation Commissions, and monitoring development projects in the city. SBLT’s most recent project is their inclusion on the city task force working on provisions to be included in the conservation easement for Wheeler Nature Park.
Following the business meeting, attention was turned to presenting the SBLT award to Barbara Bull, who has been a resident of South Burlington for 64 years. Bull, and her husband Bill, built their home on East Terrace in 1952 when it still bordered the Fiske Farm, where the Sheraton is today. At that time it was just a short street of three houses and the rest was a cow pasture. She recalls watching the traffic stop on Williston Road to allow the cows to cross and riding horseback in the woods where Rice High School now stands.
Bull has been devoted to outdoor activities and exploring the natural beauties of South Burlington all her life. She has consistently dedicated personal time to the protection and enjoyment of these outdoor spaces.
When the first conservation fund was established and several important properties were purchased for the city, most notably Red Rocks Park, Bull served as Natural Resources Chairwoman. She was an outspoken advocate for cleaning up old dumps, supporting composting and lined landfills. Bull was and still is a tireless supporter of livability in her neighborhood, where she raised four children. A graduate of Middlebury College, she was a teacher at South Burlington High School and active in the community on many levels. She has served on the League of Women Voters, Habitat for Humanity, Green Up Day, Catamount Trail Association and the SBLT board.
According to Dopp, “Barbara Bull truly embodies the values and mission of the SBLT and we were delighted to recognize her many contributions to our community.”