Montgomery Parks Volunteer Named State and County Volunteer of the Year!

July 11, 2016

Sarah Morse honored for her community volunteer leadership with the Little Falls Watershed Alliance.

Montgomery Parks, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission is proud to announce Sarah Morse, a longtime Montgomery Parks volunteer, as the recipient of both the 2016 Maryland Recreation and Parks Association Community Volunteer Award and the 2016 County-wide Recreation Advisory Board Outstanding Parks Volunteer Award in recognition of her dedication and extraordinary service to her local parks, environment, and community. Montgomery Parks Director Mike Riley presented the awards on June 6th at the Lodge at Little Seneca Creek in Boyds, MD.


“During the past five years Sarah has motivated over 850 volunteers from the local community who have spent more than 2,400 hours working in our parks,” said Montgomery Parks Director Michael F. Riley. “She is a tireless educator and community organizer who manages to bring residents closer to their parks every day. She is a true citizen advocate, the neighbor who is always willing to learn and share what Montgomery Parks is doing and why.”


Sarah is a founding board member and the current executive director of the Little Falls Watershed Alliance (LFWA), one of Montgomery Parks most active and productive community partners. Since 2008, LFWA has been dedicated to restoring the water quality, improving the natural habitat, protecting the natural heritage and enhancing the community’s enjoyment of the many creeks and forests in the watershed.


Under Sarah’s direction, LFWA organizes more than 40 service projects a year, including monthly stream and park cleanups and invasive plant removal. Sarah has also led efforts in community education for children and adults, securing grant funding for projects, and championing the importance of parks and streams in current and future community planning. Sarah’s outreach and engagement efforts bring together volunteers from the local neighborhoods, schools, scout groups, religious organizations, corporations, and environmental organizations.


Sarah has deep roots in the Little Falls Watershed community, as it is where she raised her children and has lived for more than 30 years. In addition to an inspirational volunteer leader, Sarah is an educator, artist, and naturalist. She has worked as a statistician, an art teacher, and the director of the Jewish Folk Arts Festival. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Grinnell College, double majoring in art and general science, and holds a master’s degree in education from Temple University.

About Montgomery Parks’ Volunteer Services Office

Montgomery Parks Volunteer Services Office works with an estimated 11,600 volunteers annually who donate more than 84,000 hours of service to the Department in a variety of ways including, but not limited to:

  • Park and stream cleanups
  • Trail work
  • Special events
  • Nature programs and gardening
  • Public safety
  • Historic interpretation

Visit for more information.

About the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission Montgomery Parks

Montgomery Parks manages more than 37,000 acres of parkland, consisting of 417 parks. Montgomery Parks is a department of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), a bi-county agency established in 1927 to steward public land. The M-NCPPC has been nationally recognized for its high quality parks and recreation services and is regarded as a national model by other parks systems.