Sharon, MA – November 30, 2012 – The Trustees of Reservations today acknowledged with deep sadness the passing of two long-time donors and supporters: Dr. Joseph E. Murray (age 93), a Wellesley and Chappaquiddick, MA, resident, and a renowned transplant Doctor and Nobel Winner; and Mrs. Eleanor Norris (age 100), a Norwell resident, teacher and philanthropist.
Eleanor Norris, a passionate nature enthusiast and conservationist, made an extraordinary gift to The Trustees, her town of Norwell, and the entire South Shore community when she donated more than 100 spectacular acres of land along the North River in 1970 to The Trustees, in memory of her husband Albert. “Thanks to Eleanor’s incredible generosity, so many Norwell residents and visitors now have Norris Reservation, located right in the heart of town, as a community treasure to enjoy every day,” says Ed Pitcavage, Trustees South Shore Management Unit Superintendent, who knew Mrs. Norris well. In honor of her 95th birthday in 2007, friends and neighbors established the Eleanor Norris Endowment Fund, which is used solely to provide ongoing care of the Norris Reservation in perpetuity. Just last year, in commemoration of her Centenarian milestone, local friends and neighbors threw Mrs. Norris another special birthday celebration, soliciting letters and cards from federal, state and local politicians, including Governor Deval Patrick who thanked Mrs. Norris for her “outstanding commitment to preserving the Commonwealth’s natural habitat for all to enjoy.”
Dr. Joseph Murray was a dedicated Trustees supporter and partner who was instrumental in many important conservation initiatives on Chappaquiddick Island, part of Martha’s Vineyard. As a long-time benefactor and former chair of The Trustees’ Chappaquiddick Property Committee, Dr. Murray gave innumerable hours of his time and leadership to Trustees staff and volunteers and generously donated 15 acres to The Trustees’ pristine Cape Poge Wildlife Refuge, location on Chappaquiddick.
“We would not hold the property gems we do today on Martha’s Vineyard without Dr. Murray’s foresight and support for The Trustees’ mission in our early formative years on the island,” says Chris Kennedy, Trustees Martha’s Vineyard Superintendent. “Dr. Murray was a pioneer in medicine and conservation and his absence from our island and beyond will be missed for generations to come.”
“It is the foresight and generosity of people like Dr. Murray and Mrs. Norris that help to preserve and protect special places like Cape Poge and Norris Reservation for everyone, forever,” adds Barbara Erickson, Trustees President and CEO. “We are deeply grateful to these dear friends for all that they have done for The Trustees, for their communities, and for conservation in Massachusetts. We will truly miss them, but will always cherish the important legacy they have left behind.”
For more information on Dr. Murray and Eleanor Norris, please visit:
More about The Trustees of Reservations
The Trustees of Reservations is the nation’s oldest statewide land conservation organization founded by open space visionary Charles Eliot in 1891 to “hold in trust” and care for properties of scenic, cultural and natural significance. Supported by members, donors and thousands of volunteers, The Trustees own and manage 108 spectacular “reservations” located throughout Massachusetts for current and future generations to enjoy.
The Trustees work to promote healthy, active, and green communities locally and around the state by providing hundreds of year-round programs, events and engagement opportunities for all ages. Most property entry fees, programs and events are free-of-charge or discounted for members.
Accredited by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, The Trustees are an established leader in the conservation movement and model for other land trusts nationally and internationally. One of the largest nonprofits in Massachusetts, The Trustees employ 150 full-time, 49 regular part-time, and 400 seasonal staff with expertise in ecology, education, historic resources, land protection, conservation, land management, and planning. We are all Trustees. We love the outdoors. We love the distinctive charms of New England. We believe in celebrating and protecting them for everyone, forever. To find out more, please visit www.thetrustees.org.