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Village of Lewiston Citizen of the Year - Tim Henderson

by jpauly
Tue, Mar 22nd 2016 09:00 am

 Village of Lewiston Citizen of the Year

Timothy Henderson


             Timothy Henderson has been chosen by Village of Lewiston Mayor Terry Collesano and Trustees as the 2016 Village of Lewiston Citizen of the Year.  Tim enriches the lives of both residents and visitors as a re-enactor, community activist, and volunteer. His contributions to our region are many and we are lucky to have him in the Village of Lewiston.


A lifelong resident of Lewiston, Tim grew up and still lives in the family home on Oneida Street.  As a young boy, Tim attended the Red Brick School (now the Lewiston Village Hall) and sat behind JB Scovell in the old Presbyterian Church. Much of Tim's history is as colorful as his personality coming across many great characters Lewistonians would know well. He delivered the Niagara Gazette to 90 year old John Brasser, who knew Josiah Tryon, and was chased off of Oak Hill by Nina Starkweather herself.  He was always keenly aware of the Lewiston's rich history and spent entire days exploring the woods near present day Artpark, often being chased by Eleanor and Barney Waldron's dogs.

            Tim is a well-known leader in our community with his involvement in environmental advocacy and the Lewiston Council on the Arts, but many know him as Josiah Tryon, the historical figure who led slaves to freedom.  Thousands of students and visitors have been fortunate to learn about Lewiston's rich history through the characters that Tim has portrayed. The countless hours of research and work done by Tim and the Lewiston Council on the Arts to create authentic and historically correct live portrayals of Lewiston's past has grown over the years.  Tim has even played a character named Jonathan, a victim of a bad epidemic, and created a character from the poetry that was found under Jonathan's bed where he stayed at the Frontier House. 

            Tim is a poet and writer with a knack for finding the historical pieces that are key to the development of Lewiston.  For the past twenty three years, Tim has been on staff at Lewiston Council on the Arts and has helped put Lewiston on the map for the portrayal of Lewiston's history in countless productions of the Marble Orchard Historic Walking Tours and Ghost Walks.  The program grew from a play Tim wrote for the 175th Lewiston Celebration taking place in the Cemetery located next to the Presbyterian Church, and took off after that.


Tim has been an environmental activist for most of his adult life.Apart from two tours of duty in Viet Nam and climbing mountains all over the world, the environment is a passion. As founder of the group R.O.L.E. (Residents Organized for Lewiston-Porter's Environment) in the 1980s, he led a successful fight against the siting of two hazardous waste incinerators near Lewiston Porter Schools.  R.O.L.E. has evolved into the current group Residents for Responsible Government. Tim's fight for our environment continues to this day. "I have always felt that there are things worth fighting for.  If we can preserve our history and also protect our future, then we can appreciate how great it is to live in the present. It is no accident that thousands of people love coming to Lewiston for our wonderful festivals, free concerts at the gazebo and great restaurants.  They only get to visit but we're the lucky one...we get to live here!"


            Tim loves contributing to the Quality of Life for residents and visitors to Lewiston.  His work has helped to make the region a cultural destination that is conscious of the historical value of a community.  Tim believes that our past is worth celebrating. Preserving what was good about history, honoring the past and keeping the stories worth telling alive is what Tim strives for.


            The Village of Lewiston has been fortunate to have Tim enhance the lives of Village Residents and thousands of visitors to the region.  The Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce, Mayor Terry Collesano and the Village of Lewiston Trustees are proud to honor Timothy Henderson as the 2016 Village of Lewiston Citizen of the Year.


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