November, 2018 – Al Higginbotham likes the old backpacker saying: “If you see something that’s not right, fix it. If you explore nature, leave without a trace.” It’s a credo reflected in his legacy over the past 12 years as a Hillsborough County Commissioner and member of the Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board.
Higginbotham – Al, as he prefers – leaves the Commission and River Board this month. From his very first term as Commissioner, he has served on the River Board. Trips to Hillsborough River Park were a beloved staple of his childhood, thanks to his grandfather, a farmer and naturalist. “The Hillsborough River is Tampa’s backbone and front porch, and if you look at how it’s changed over the years — declined and then recovered — we’ve left it a better place,” he says.
“Al made so many contributions to the River Board,” said Shawn College, Executive Director of the Hillsborough River Board. “He rightly questioned what the River Board was doing and how it was being done, and made us better.”
Far from retiring, Al and his wife are about to set out on the adventure of a lifetime. “We’re selling all our possessions and property, getting a motorhome and traveling across the country for a couple of years,” he said. Not one for elaborate goodbyes or gifts, Al’s colleagues on the River Board presented him with a very practical gift, an RV Journal, to document tales from the road.
Happy trails, Al, and thank you for your distinguished service!