Park Protectors

Meet Arlington's 2017 Outstanding Park Volunteers.

Yu-hsin Hsu and Paul Holland

If it’s Saturday you’ll find Yu-hsin Hsu feeding the animals at Long Branch Nature Center. On Wednesdays, she’s raising native plants to sell to the public, weeding the pollinator garden at the Arlington Central Library, or teaching kids to remove invasive plants. A tireless volunteer and Master Naturalist, she recently had to make room on her schedule for another event: accepting Arlington County’s “Bill Thomas Outstanding Park Service Volunteer” award.

Hsu, who lives near Ballston, says she first began volunteering at Long Branch to show her daughter, Jade, the value of nature and helping others. “Everywhere I go to volunteer [in Arlington], a lot of people show up,” she says. “They’re selfless.”

Also accepting the award this year is Waverly Hills resident Paul Holland. An environmental consultant, he has served on the county’s Park and Recreation Commission and is vice president of the Arlington Boathouse Foundation. Holland reports that the foundation is making steady progress toward building an Arlington boathouse on the Potomac River that can be used by kayakers, fishermen and rowers. “We need innovative ways to find additional park space,” he says. For now, he enjoys hiking in Potomac Overlook Regional Park with his kids, Amelia and Elliot.

What’s happening in your neighborhood? Send tips to Laurie McClellan at

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