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Local

Herrera-Mishler to guide Olmsted Parks through 2020

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The man who has overseen the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy since 2008 has agreed to continue leading the park system for another seven years.

Thomas Herrera-Mishler has agreed to a contract extension and will continue to serve as president and CEO through 2020. Herrera-Mishler came to the Conservancy in 2008, and one of his first tasks was to help the parks recover from the damage caused by the October 2006 surprise storm.

"We lost ten percent of the trees in the park just outright that night. We've planted over 4,000 trees, and all with volunteers, since we got started here in 2007-2008," Herrera-Mishler told WBFO.

Herrera-Mishler has also worked to secure funds for the restoration and reuse of the 1,200-acre park system designed by Frederick Law Olmsted.  The system's master plan includes more than $8 million in improvements.

One project currently underway is the restoration of RiverRock Gardens in Riverside Park.

"Riverside Park's lost a lot of its Olmsted feeling and landscape features over the years and so we're excited to be seeing...we call it RiverRock Gardens...going back into Riverside Park.  We're also going to be seeing the big splash pad project being finalized in Martin Luther King Park this spring," Herrera-Mishler said.

The parks system is the first of its kind in the nation designed by landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted.