Richard Houston


Describe your volunteer activities at HCT: For the last several years, I’ve volunteered for the CoastSweep and Herring Count projects of the Trust. Dozens of my students at Harwich High School have also participated in those activities with me as part of their community service graduation requirement

How long have you volunteered?  I’ve been involved in Harwich Conservation Trust activities for most of my twenty years living in town.

What do you like most about it, memorable moments?  I particularly enjoy the Herring Count each spring; it makes me slow down and enjoy seeing the change of the seasons. My students are always excited to report back when they see a big surge of the herring come up the river during their session of counting. I also get a kick out of seeing the enthusiasm of the students when they find trash that needs to be removed during the beach clean-up. They show great pride in contributing to improvement and protection of their town.

What’s special about Harwich?  Harwich is a special place because of its natural beauty, the character of the people, and the interesting history. I first came to Harwich during the summer as a little kid with my family back in the 1950s; we came here almost every year. My extended clan still comes down every August for a big reunion. My in-laws have also lived here for over thirty years.  When I got the teaching job at Harwich High School 20 years ago, my wife and I decided that we wanted to live in the town, get involved in the community, and raise our daughter here (she was a K-12 Harwich kid).

What else do you like to do for fun or other activities or volunteering?  I love my job teaching history at Harwich High (soon to be Monomoy Regional). I also enjoy running with my Cape Cod Athletic Club friends, fishing the waters of Harwich, golfing at Cranberry Valley, and boating in Nantucket Sound. I’ve run the Boston Marathon 25 times. I’ve also volunteered for town committees, teacher union activities, the Friends of Pleasant Bay, and fundraising for cancer research.