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EPA News Release --
Bay State Individuals and Groups
Receive Prestigious Regional Environmental Awards
May 3, 2006
(and, below, April 25 letter of congratulations)

News Release
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency New England Regional Office
May 3, 2006

Contact: David Deegan, 617-918-1017

Bay State Individuals and Groups Receive Prestigious Regional Environmental Awards

(Boston, Mass. - May 3, 2006) - Four Bay Staters and three Massachusetts groups will be honored on Thursday, May 4 in Boston’s Faneuil Hall as EPA presents the 2005 Environmental Merit Awards.

Recognizing significant contributions to environmental awareness and problem solving, the Massachusetts awardees included two for individual contributions, two for business, industry and professional organizations, one for efforts by local, state or federal governments, and two lifetime achievement awards.

Given out by EPA since 1970, the merit awards honor individuals and groups who have shown particular ingenuity and commitment in their efforts to preserve the region's environment. This year's competition drew approximately 50 nominations from across New England.

“These awards are among the highest honors EPA can bestow to recognize environmental accomplishments,” said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator for EPA’s New England Office. “The work of these individuals, organizations and businesses reflect the best attributes of New Englanders, working to find solutions to environmental issues. I offer my gratitude for their extraordinary contributions in protecting the environment.” The winners from Massachusetts were among 19 from across New England.

Awards were given in the categories of individual; business (including professional organizations); local, state or federal government; and environmental, community, academia or nonprofit organization. Also, each year EPA may present lifetime achievement awards for individuals.

Individual Environmental Merit Award:
Ellen Mass President,
Friends of Alewife Reservation

Like few other people, Ellen Mass has brought many groups and individuals together to give the greater Alewife ecosystem a significant place in the minds and hearts of the citizens of Belmont, Arlington, Cambridge and surrounding communities. As President of the Friends of Alewife Reservation, Ellen has worked tirelessly for the past six years on behalf of a small, but significant urban wild of 130 acres. Owned by the Department of Conservation and Recreation, this urban swath of land receives constant attention and stewardship under Ellen’s leadership.

Ms. Mass has organized over 100 reservation clean-up days, enlisting helpers through local neighborhood groups, classes, and community service organizations. Ellen has worked with Lesley University to develop a successful public forum on improvement projects for the Alewife sub-watershed; held forums and educational events; organized canoe trips, sponsored multiple naturalist docent training sessions and reservation walks; and led a two-year Mural Project that resulted in a 90 foot mural featuring wildlife of the Alewife Reservation which is prominently displayed at the Alewife T stop. Ellen is currently orchestrating an impressive multi-agency effort to restore natural buffers on a 10-acre parcel of the Reservation. Ellen has made a significant contribution to the Alewife Reservation and has heightened our environmental awareness of this important urban jewel.


April 25, 2006 OFFICE OF THE

Ms. Ellen Mass
President & Friends of Alewife Reservation
186 Alewife Brook Parkway
Cambridge, MA 02138

Dear Ms. Mass:

Congratulations! New England Office of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has selected you to receive an Environmental Merit Award in recognition of your exceptional work and commitment to the environment in 2005.

EPA's Environmental Merit Award is an annual award that recognizes outstanding environmental advocates who have made significant contributions toward preserving and protecting our natural resources. You were nominated by Dr. David Morimoto.

The Merit Awards will be presented at a special ceremony to be held at Faneuil Hall in Boston on Thursday, May 4, 2006, from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. The 2006 ceremony is a celebration of environmental achievement in New England. You will be a guest of honor at this celebration, and we encourage you to bring your family and friends to share this honor and enjoy the afternoon activities.

EPA's Administrator, Stephen Johnson, will present this year's EMA awards and our ceremony will also commemorate EPA's 35th Anniversary.

Please R.S.V.P. by Tuesday, May 2, 2006, by faxing back the enclosed form to (617) 918-0108. Directions to Faneuil Hall are enclosed for your convenience.

Again, congratulations, and, on behalf of the EPA, thank you for your outstanding work toward improving and preserving the quality of our environment. We look forward to seeing you on May 4.


Robert W. Varney
Regional Administrator


cc: Dr. David Morimoto

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