EPA honors 2 URI faculty members

KINGSTON, R.I. — June 16, 1999 — The federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has selected two University of Rhode Island faculty members for its Environmental Merit Recognition Award. Raymond Wright, professor and department chair of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and Linda Green, Watershed Watch Program director at URI, were honored in the individual category for their accomplishments and commitment to the environment. Wright, of Wakefield, has dedicated himself to monitoring and improving water quality standards in New England. He has designed and implemented numerous water quality sampling and modeling projects aimed at making waterways clean and safe. He is the principal investigator on the Blackstone River Initiative (BRI). Through this study of the Blackstone, he helped advance a global understanding of pollution problems in this New England watershed, while earning national recognition for the project. In the classroom, he has served as a mentor and role model for his students as both a professor and a department chair. Save The Bay calls Wright a true friend of Narragansett Bay and its rivers. Green, of Kingston, has been an advocate of volunteer freshwater monitoring on both a local and national level. She oversees URI’s Watershed Watch, a 12-year-old program which currently has 250 volunteers who monitor approximately 74 locations in the state. She is one of the founders of Rhode Island’s Volunteer Monitoring Steering Committee, which creates a link between state agencies and volunteer monitoring groups so they can share information and discuss significant environmental issues. Green has been involved in the implementation of regional and national volunteer monitoring conferences, and is the only volunteer monitoring representative on the National Water Quality Monitoring Council. She has also taken part in other environmental projects, such as the Wood-Pawtucket Watershed, which became the first river council in the State. The Environmental Merit Awards were instituted in 1970, and honor scientists, journalists, teachers, community activists, writers, businesses, government officials and others who have been committed to protecting public health and to the preservation of New England’s natural resources. For More Information: Dave Lavallee, 401-874-2116