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Our mission is to protect all the waters of Connecticut: surface waters, aquifers, and wetlands. We promote and support good water policies statewide; we assist environmental groups, businesses, and individuals who seek to improve the quality of local waters. We offer educational services for experts and beginners alike.
This statement serves as the underpinning for the organization and all of our work.
Rivers Alliance Welcomes New Director
Dr. Richard Judd has joined the Board of Rivers Alliance. We have worked with him on protecting reservoir lands, in particular New Britain reservoir land that Tilcon has proposed to lease for rock mining. Dr. Judd has a distinguished resume in the sciences and academic governance, and is a leader in his community. He is currently trying a new venture: a course in philanthropy for college students. They learn how to compete for grants. What could be more useful?
Here are some of his accomplishments:
He is President Emeritus of Central Connecticut State University and Professor of Educational Leadership; he also holds a professorship in the Department of Biomolecular Sciences. His Ph.D. dissertation at the University of Connecticut was on constitutional issues and higher education; his master’s degree is in Counseling Psychology from The Ohio State University. His areas of teaching have been emergency medicine and parliamentary law. He holds honorary degrees from Briarwood College (CT), Doctor of Laws; Kyung Hee University (Korea), Doctor of Medicine; and Eastern Mediterranean University, Doctor of International Relations (Cyprus).
He has received dozens of awards for community leadership in emergency medicine, philanthropy, art, business development, and education. Other awards are associated with his international teaching work with institutions in Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.
Dr. Judd is the author of several emergency medical texts and articles, and has presented more than 100 seminars and lectures on emergency medicine throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. Over the years, he has headed a number of the emergency-service and public-safety organizations in New Britain and at the national level.
Currently he is First Vice Chair of the International Council for Middle East Studies (a Washington, D.C., based “think-tank"), Vice President of Development of the Global Partnership for the International University of Iraq, and Immediate Past President and Director of the Central CT Association of Retarded Citizens.
Dr. Judd and his wife Nancy reside in New Britain, Connecticut.
Lifetime Achievement in Land Conservation Award Given to Margaret Miner
The Connecticut Land Conservation Council has awarded its 2018 Excellence in Land Conservation Award to River Alliance Executive Director Margaret Miner. The Council's announcement notes that Margaret's efforts to protect water includes working to protect open space, quoting her as saying, “There is no better protection for the state’s waters than natural open space adjacent to and around a water body."
Rivers Alliance Executive Director Margaret Miner is the new Bud Foster Awardee for the Connecticut River Conservancy's (formally CT River Watershed Council) 65th River Celebration. The celebration is on Saturday, June 17, at the Riverfront Recapture Boathouse in Hartford.
Margaret Miner Receives US EPA New England Environmental Lifetime Merit Award 2016
And here's her letter:
White Memorial Foundation Conservation Award 2016 Presented to Rivers Alliance
Margaret Miner, executive director of Rivers Alliance of Connecticut, was presented with the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Connecticut Association of Conservation and Inland Wetlands Commissions (CACIWC). A handsome plaque was publicly delivered to Ms. Miner by Rivers Alliance director and CACIWC member Martin Mador (left in photo) at the Rivers Alliance annual meeting on December 2. Mr. Mador told the audience that the award was in recognition of Rivers Alliance’s work protecting state waters. (At right in photo is CACIWC member Tom Odell.)
The Pomperaug River Watershed Coalition (PRWC) has announced that Rivers Alliance Executive Director Margaret Miner, of Roxbury, CT, is the first-year recipient of The Dr. Marc J. Taylor Environmental Stewardship Award. The award presentation will be held on June 13 at PRWC’s Annual Benefit at The Mill House Antiques and Gardens in Woodbury.
Dr. Taylor, a former board member of Rivers Alliance who passed away in June of 2012, is remembered as a highly respected and compassionate physician, educator, and environmental leader. It was in his retirement from the medical profession that Dr. Taylor turned his keen intellect and calm demeanor toward fostering coalition-based solutions for the benefit of the environment. In 1999, Dr. Taylor and a group of his peers founded the Pomperaug River Watershed Coalition to study the quality and quantity of water in the Pomperaug watershed, a 90-square-mile area that touches eight towns in western Connecticut. With science at its core and education as its hallmark, PRWC works with watershed towns, regulatory agencies, environmental organizations, and community volunteers to continue Dr. Taylor's legacy in stewarding the local water resources.
PRWC’s Board of Directors established this award in 2015 to further recognize Marc for his countless environmental stewardship contributions. John Lacadie, PRWC Board Chairman, emphasized that, “in selecting Margaret for this award, PRWC is appreciatively acknowledging her as an individual who has demonstrated similar outstanding dedication and leadership for the conservation of natural resources. We know that Marc would have been as extremely pleased as we are with recognizing Margaret for her environmental accomplishments locally and at the state and federal level.”
Besides being Rivers Alliance's Executive Director, Margaret is Vice Chairman of the CT Water Planning Council Advisory Group and advocates on behalf of numerous environmental organizations throughout the state. Among the many who endorsed Margaret for this award was Lori Brown, executive director of the CT League of Conservation Voters. In her comments Lori stated: “Marc and Margaret worked together for decades on behalf of the environment. Together, they made amazing progress to improve laws that today help protect the quality and quantity of Connecticut’s precious water resources and the life they support.”
Friends of the Lake Annual Partnership Award
Friends of the Lake (FOTL) has given its annual Partnership Award for 2014 jointly to Margaret Miner, Executive Director of Rivers Alliance of Connecticut, and attorney Roger Reynolds, legal director at Connecticut Fund for the Environment. The two advocates have been working together with the lake group to promote better sewage treatment, especially phosphorus removal, in a number of municipalities. FOTL, based in Bridgewater, is a nonprofit organization protecting Lake Lillinonah, which receives wastewater from Danbury. The organization uses some of the most sophisticated monitoring technology in New England; and its staff, members, and volunteers include experts in ecology, law, boating, fishing, and the always needed debris removal. FOTL handed out a number of awards at its festive annual meeting on August 21, with speakers from the Steering Committee including the group's high-energy leader Jeffrey Silverman (who described Ms. Miner as "a fighting machine") and program manager Greg Bollard, who also apparently doesn't need sleep.
At the 15th annual Connecticut Greenways Awards Ceremony, which took place on June 6, 2014, at Goodwin College, Susan Whalen, deputy commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, and Bruce Donald, chairman of the Connecticut Greenways Council, presented 10 awards to groups and individuals for their dedication to the development of Connecticut’s greenways. The final award presented, the Lifetime Achievement Award, went to Margaret Miner, the executive director of Rivers Alliance of Connecticut. Ms. Miner and Rivers Alliance were recognized for work on river protection and promotion of blueways, specifically Rivers Alliance’s Connecticut Water Trails website.
The Rivers Alliance Water Trails Program site, www.ctwatertrails.org, is a one-stop hub for information on water trails and paddling opportunities in Connecticut. It connects the many groups that maintain and protect water trails to people interested in paddling the state’s many scenic waterways. The site promotes the use and appreciation of our waters with an interactive map presenting paddling locations across the state, as well as safety, events, and guidance information.
Also in a leading role at the ceremony was Laurie Giannotti, who coordinates the National Recreational Trails Program for CT DEEP, a source of funding for the CT Water Trails program and greenways in general. Attendees commented that the ceremony was full of positive energy demonstrating a bright future for Connecticut’s greenways.
Farewell and Thank You
James S. McInerney, Jr. (1937-2017)
It is with profound sadness that the board and staff of Rivers Alliance report the death, on September 16, 2017, of their beloved and admired director Jim McInerney. He was a much honored leader in water supply, retiring as chairman of Aquarion Water Company.
Trained as a civil engineer (Manhattan College) and in management (Harvard University), Jim became head of Bridgeport Hydraulic in 1984, and led it through two decades of infrastructure improvement and institutional growth, and through two acquisitions and name changes (to Kelda when it was purchased by an English company and Aquarion when bought by the Macquarie Bank in Australia). He received numerous awards for his professional achievements and civic good works. He was keenly interested in the promotion of environmentally sound water practices and policy, and he served on the boards of Housatonic Valley Association, as well as, Rivers Alliance.
Jim was a straightforward, extraordinarily helpful advisor, an effective, unpretentious leader, a delightful raconteur, and devoted family man. He and his wife, friend, and supporter, Eileen, had homes in both Norwalk and Old Lyme for much of their lives. He is survived by her and their three children, James McInerney III, Noreen Ranelli, and Erin DiProposero, and by his sister, Evelyn Roman, eight grandchildren, a nephew, and niece -- all of Connecticut. Gifts in his memory may be made to the National Parkinson Foundation or the Chase Family Movement Disorder Center.
Alexandra "Sandy" Breslin (1954-2017)
of Bethany CT died on May 31, 2017 at Connecticut Hospice in Branford surrounded by her family and friends. She was an extraordinarily effective advocate for the environment and a great friend and guide for Rivers Alliance. She worked to within a few weeks of her death, but was overtaken by a rare cancer. We knew Sandy particularly as a defender of all wildlife, especially birds and, for most of her career, as a defender of the health of L. I. Sound. Rivers Alliance is honored that, as co-chair of the important Long Island Sound Study Citizens Advisory Committee, her affiliation was as an RA member. She was admired and respected in environmental circles in the state and nationally. She was active in politics, witty, fun, and generous. Here is a link to her formal obituary: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nhregister/obituary.aspx?n=alexandra-breslin-sandy&pid=185681745
Marc Taylor, M.D. 1937-2012
We announce with deep sorrow the death of our director Marc Taylor, M.D., on June 5. He was a friend of rivers across the country, but especially here in Connecticut. He was an engineer, physician, Yale professor, woodworker, outdoorsman, fun host, family man, and, above all, in his years of partial retirement, a supremely energetic and dedicated advocate for rivers and clean water. Inspired in part by the lovely, small Pomperaug River in his own backyard in Southbury, CT, Marc became within a few years a nationally respected river expert and policy leader.
He co-founded the Pomperaug River Watershed Coalition, with a focus on good science and cooperative stewardship. The organization has developed sophisticated water-science for use by local decision makers. He was active in the land trust, because the health of land and water are mutually linked. Extending his advocacy from town to state, to region, to nation, he became a director and officer of Rivers Alliance of Connecticut, president of the Housatonic Valley Association, and then president of River Network, based in Portland, Oregon. He remained an active and extraordinarily helpful participant in all these groups. He never gave up on a cause; he just worked harder. He was modest and quiet, willing to sit through long meetings if he thought it would help a river or river group. But he wasn't shy about approaching prominent leaders in the public and private sector with the message that rivers are the lifelines of the country, and must be protected and supported.
He was given numerous awards and honors, but the accomplishment he valued highest was persuading groups with apparently different interests that we all depend on water, and we all should work together.
Many of our members and friends have sent remembrances, and we are collecting and binding these for his wife, Jan, and daughters, Ann and Regina.
----- Board and Staff of Rivers Alliance of Connecticut, June 5, 2012
Timeline: Marc Taylor was born in 1936, and grew up outside New York City. He learned to canoe as a boy scout. He attended Amherst College, worked briefly as an engineer, and then enrolled in Columbia University Medical School. He did his internship, residency, and post-doctoral fellowship at Yale University Medical School. He did important research on liver function, taught at Yale, had a large private practice, and in his so-called retirement he was medical director of an extended care facility. Most of this time, however, was spent on river advocacy and science, as described above. He was fully active in this second avocation until pancreatic cancer and an infection took him away in just a few weeks.
His family can be reached at POB 814, Southbury CT 06488 or at the email of his son in law, firstname.lastname@example.org