Durham native RIVERDAVE OWEN attended Durham High School in the 1960s when the movement to protect the Eno River began to gather momentum under the leadership of Margaret Nygard.  

          When the Eno parklands took shape in the seventies and eighties, he worked as an ethnolinguist in the Middle East and began honing his skills as a naturalist by exploring the Syrian-African Rift Valley. 

          In 1989 he returned to Durham where he retrained and focused his energies as a hometown naturalist and herbalist, initiating two popular environmental education programs known as Wafting the Eno River and Tree Camp.