29th Annual Meeting in Cataumet celebrates accomplishments, honors Bay guardian and volunteers

The Coalition celebrated another exceptional year of accomplishments and honored a Buzzards Bay guardian and a remarkable volunteer at our 29th Annual Meeting in Cataumet last night.

Mark Rasmussen, David Pincumbe, and Korrin Petersen

Retired EPA scientist David Pincumbe received the Coalition’s 2017 Buzzards Bay Guardian Award for his role as a driving force behind wastewater improvements in Buzzards Bay, including New Bedford and Wareham.

At the meeting, held at Kingman Yacht Center’s Chart Room restaurant, Coalition President Mark Rasmussen highlighted accomplishments over the past year to reduce nitrogen pollution, conserve land, and engage the community in outdoor recreation. These include the approval of a nitrogen pollution cleanup plan for the Westport Rivers, the protection of land around Allens Pond and in the Mattapoisett River Valley, and progress to create an on-the-water exploration center on Onset Bay.

Another accomplishment to reduce nitrogen pollution is taking place right at Kingman Yacht Center, which has built a state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant to serve the marina, the restaurant, and a new neighboring residential development. Kingman voluntarily sized the new wastewater system to accommodate up to 50 additional homes in the adjacent Cedar Point neighborhood, which could remove up to 2,000 pounds of nitrogen each year to Red Brook Harbor.

But the meeting’s real celebration was the presentation of the Buzzards Bay Guardian Award and the Volunteer of the Year award. The Guardian Award is the highest honor given by the Coalition. Buzzards Bay Guardians have demonstrated outstanding service in the cleanup, restoration, or protection of the Bay. Most importantly, Guardians are unsung heroes who deserve public recognition, not only for what they have achieved but to inspire others to make a difference.

Gayle Whittle and Lynn Coish

Wareham resident Gayle Whittle received the Buzzards Bay Coalition’s 2017 Volunteer of the Year award.

This year, the Coalition presented a Guardian award to David Pincumbe, who retired this month following a 35-year career at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Pincumbe was a driving force behind wastewater improvements in Buzzards Bay; his work led to dramatic reductions in pollution from the New Bedford and Wareham wastewater treatment plants, and he was a strong advocate for nitrogen reductions in all Bay discharges.

In addition to the Guardian Award, the Coalition also recognized Gayle Whittle of Wareham as Volunteer of the Year. A retired teacher, Whittle began volunteering in 2015 at the Richard C. Wheeler Bay Learning Center and quickly took up other volunteer responsibilities, including land stewardship, outdoor programming, and Baywatchers water quality monitoring. She also leads a team of volunteers in the food tent at the Buzzards Bay Swim.

Category: Events

Swim the Bay, Save the Bay

Buzzards Bay Swim

Celebrate clean water at the Coalition's 25th annual Buzzards Bay Swim on Saturday, June 30, 2018! Join more than 300 others who make a difference to protect clean water in Buzzards Bay. You can swim, volunteer, or cheer on swimmers as they cross outer New Bedford Harbor.

Learn More ›

Related Stories

State Appeals Court: Mattapoisett homeowner must restore damaged wetlands on Eel Pond

Court decision upholds the Mattapoisett Conservation Commission’s 2015 enforcement order requiring that a Seabreeze Lane homeowner restore filled wetlands and buffer zone along Eel Pond, one of Buzzards Bay’s most delicate coastal salt ponds.

Full Story ›
Decision Makers Workshops demonstrate real-world solutions to nitrogen pollution from septic systems

Local decision makers from around the region came together at two free workshops in April to learn about the results of the Coalition’s on-the-ground pilot projects to reduce nitrogen pollution from septic systems.

Full Story ›
How a New Bedford native learned to love open water swimming through the Buzzards Bay Swim

For his 10th Buzzards Bay Swim and the Swim's 25th anniversary, swimmer Ben Ostiguy has set himself a new challenge: to double his fundraising donations.

Full Story ›

Working to Save Buzzards Bay

The Buzzards Bay Coalition is a membership-supported organization dedicated to improving the health of the Buzzards Bay ecosystem for all through education, conservation, research, and advocacy.

We work to protect clean water on the Bay and on the land: