In mid-September Save the Dinky President Anita Garoniak received the prestigious Arthur L Reuben (ART) Advocate for Rail Transit award from the New Jersey Association of Railroad Passengers (NJ-ARP). For news coverage, see Planet Princeton. The ART award is given annually to recognize outstanding advocacy for transit by rail. Anita received the award on September 19 after giving a talk at the NJ-ARP annual meeting. In a follow-up press release announcing the award, NJ-ARP stated:
If our 35 years of rail advocacy has taught us anything, it’s that
advocacy is not for the faint of heart, nor for those who lack patience
and determination. There are always hard-fought battles to be won,
and multitudes of reasons why ot to build something, or in Princeton’s
case, preserve something both of historic value and of necessity to the
community. We also learn that sometimes, despite the best of efforts,
what we seek to attain is not realized.
Anita said when she accepted the award: “Save the Dinky is not a one-person endeavor. It was and continues to be a team effort. Without support from our membership–through letters to the editor, appearances at meetings, financial contributions, and simple words of encouragement in chance meetings–the fight would not have been possible.”
Readers may wonder: “Isn’t the fight over? Hasn’t the station been moved and the new one put in place? The short answer is that the fight is not over. It continues because it was never a fight only about the station location. The fight is also about public accountabiity, the process due to rail transit riders before NJ Transit can lawfully agree to abandon an historic station, and the need to preserve a viable rail link to Princeton Junction. The issues of NJ Transit’s legal obligations are are at stage center in our two remaining court cases scheduled for argument October 19 at 10 a.m. in the historic courthouse in Mt. Holly.