“Sewer-Cide” newspaper  clipping - Marion Stoddart and Andre Reggio report on the Nashua River clean-up to the League of Women Voters

Founders-Andre C Reggio showing Sewer-Cide. “Sewer-Cide” newspaper  clipping - Marion Stoddart and Andre Reggio report on the Nashua River clean-up to the League of Women Voters


NRWA Founders and Incorporators

The effort to clean-up the Nashua River began in the early 1960’s when Marion Stoddart, a housewife in Groton, Massachusetts, observed the appalling condition of the Nashua River. At that time, effluent from local mills and raw sewage were all dumped directly into the river creating a foul-smelling, colorful, and pulp-filled dead waterway. Having grown up near Reno, Nevada where water was a scarce and highly valued resource, and being influenced by the League of Women Voters, Marion made the decision to make the clean-up of the Nashua River her life’s goal.

The first annual meeting of the NRWA Board of Directors: Marion Stoddart, Robert Brown, Wayne Kimmerlin, and Mary Haueisen (Longsworth Mathis)
In 1962, having rallied friends, neighbors, and local officials to work with her, Marion and others formed the Nashua River Clean-up Committee. That Committee worked tirelessly to advocate for passage of the Clean Water Act, to solicit support for the clean-up from federal, state, and local government officials (even delivering a bottle of dirty river water to Massachusetts Governor Volpe), to engage mill and other business owners in the cause, and to educate citizens in every watershed town about the need to restore the river.

As the work of the Clean-up Committee progressed and drew more support, the decision was made to establish a non-profit environmental organization. In 1969, the Nashua River Watershed Association was formed. The Incorporators and first Board of Directors of the Association included community leaders from throughout the watershed, including Benton MacKaye, creator of the Appalachian Mountain Trail; Jeffrey P. Smith, renowned land conservationist and a founder of Beaver Brook Association in Hollis, New Hampshire; Louise Doyle, environmental benefactor and donor of the Trustees of Reservations’ Doyle Reservation in Leominster, Massachusetts; and, of course, Marion Stoddart, who was recognized by the United Nations for her work to restore the river. Marion’s story has become the basis of the award-winning documentary "Marion Stoddart: The Work of 1000".

NRWA Incorporators

Robert M. Boehme of Bolton, MA
Robert W. Brown of Harvard, MA
Lee P. “Bill” Farnsworth of Lancaster, MA
Frank Hanchett of Dunstable, MA
Harold Harley of Lunenburg, MA
Mary L. Haueisen of Pepperell, MA
Joyce R. Huff of Fitchburg, MA
Judith Holloway of Pepperell, MA
Benton MacKaye of Shirley, MA
Ernest W. Mitchell of Shirley, MA
Andre C. Reggio of Groton, MA
Stephen W. Sabine of Groton, MA
Emily Smith of Leominster, MA
Jeffrey P. Smith of Hollis, NH
Marion R. Stoddart of Groton, MA
Lois Taylor of Nashua, NH
Harold Vanasse of Clinton, MA
William P. Wharton of Groton, MA

NRWA’s First Board of Directors

Marion R. Stoddart of Groton, MA—President
W.F. Kimmerlin of Hollis, NH—Vice President
Robert W. Brown of Harvard, MA—Treasurer
Mary L. Haueisen of Pepperell, MA—Secretary

Joseph C. Broyles of Groton, MA
Donald M. Crocker of Fitchburg, MA
Louise Doyle of Leominster, MA
Joyce R. Huff of Fitchburg, MA
Raymond B. Lang of Lancaster, MA
M. Donald Piermarini of Leominster, MA
Emily Smith of Leominster, MA

The NRWA is proud of its history of grassroots activism and citizen involvement, and honors the vision of our founders and incorporators by continuing their work today and by inspiring new generations to join in that vision.