Toshi Seeger passed away on July 9 at the age of 91. While obituaries in the New York Times and Rolling Stone focus on her 70-year marriage to legendary folk singer Pete Seeger, those in the Hudson Valley know her as a tireless activist whose decades of work hung on the principle that music and the arts could be channeled as a force for positive change in the world. Guided by this conviction, Toshi and Pete stepped to the forefront of the environmental movement in 1966.
Horrified by severe levels of oil, sewage, and chemicals that polluted the river near their home in Beacon, New York, they established Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, an organization that helps protect and preserve the Hudson River and its ecosystem. The nonprofit has worked to pass significant legislation, such as the Clean Water Act. As a founder of the organization, Toshi consistently involved the local community and invited as many diverse voices as possible, always keeping in mind the bigger picture. For 35 years, Toshi was also a key organizer of the Great Hudson River Revival, a music festival which draws upwards of 200,000 people to Croton Point Park each year, and which benefits environmental causes.
Omega is grateful to the groundbreaking accomplishments of this incredible and inspiring woman.