Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History
Anderson, Nancy W., 1922-1997
|Nancy W. Anderson (1922-1975) was an environmentalist and activist who was director of environmental affairs at the Lincoln Filene Center for Citizenship and Public Affairs, as well as serving on the faculty of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.|
A native of Arlington, Virginia, she served in the WAVES during World War II. Her involvement in environmental issues began at her former home in Reading, where she did a study of the Ipswich River for the League of Women Voters. The selectmen wanted to put a dump there. She organized the opposition, brought 250 people to town meeting, and persuaded the selectmen to stop the plans as well as to appoint her to the board. Mrs. Anderson was a consultant for conferences in the Northwest, in Kenya, and India, whose environmentalists point to the Tufts conference as a model.
She was a member of the advisory committee to the UN Environmental Fellows Program and was also active with the World Conservation Union. She was the recipient of several awards, including a merit award from the Environmental Protection Agency and a Conservation Hero Award from the National Park Service.
After her retirement from the Lincoln Filene Center, she was a senior research associate at the Global Development and Environment Institute and the Fletcher School. Her annual courses at the Lincoln Filene Center had a wide impact because they educated a generation of environmental advocates and officials who now shape policy locally and regionally.
In 1979, she founded the New England Environmental Network and organized the New England Environmental Conference at Tufts, an annual event until 1996, which became one of the largest environmental gatherings in the country. By 1993, the conference attracted 1,500 people to its workshops, 150 organizations sponsored booths, and 300 environmental groups participated. She was actively involved in the protection of the northern forests of New England, New York, and the Pacific Northwest, and was influential in East Africa and India.
She died in Falmouth, Maine, in November, 1997.The Nancy W. Anerson Award for Environmental Sustainability is named in her honor.
Source: GLO November 14, 1997; 100H.