10th Annual Awards Honor Exceptional Contributions to New Hampshire’s Environment
Hampton, N.H. – June 23, 2023 – On Tuesday, June 20, the winners of the 10th annual Aquarion Environmental Champion Awards were announced during a ceremony held at the Great Bay Discovery Center in Greenland, NH.
Aquarion received many nominations from all over the state, spanning four categories: Business, Non-Profit Organization, Adult, and Student (Grades 9-12). These awards are designed to honor volunteer initiatives that have made substantial impacts on enhancing environmental quality by preserving, conserving, and rehabilitating New Hampshire’s water, air, soil, and habitats for plants and wildlife.
The distinguished winners from the Business, Non-Profit, and Adult categories were each awarded a $5,000 grant to donate to the environmental non-profit of their choice. The winner of the Student category received a $1,000 award. The winners of the 2023 Aquarion Environmental Champion Awards are:
Business - Hypertherm Associates (Hanover, NH)
Hypertherm Associates, committed to environmental sustainability and community service, has contributed 250,000 hours to community service since 2003. The company aims to achieve ambitious environmental goals by 2030, including reducing resource consumption, becoming carbon neutral, and halving the carbon impact of their products. They have implemented a Return-to-Recycle Pilot Program and purchased Green-e Certified renewable energy certificates to offset energy use, planning to offset 100% of their global energy usage by 2024. Hypertherm's commitment to responsible corporate citizenship and creating shared value guides their actions, reflecting their dedication to protecting the environment for current and future generations.
Non-Profit Organization – NH LAKES (Concord, NH)
NH LAKES is committed to restoring and preserving New Hampshire's lakes, addressing threats from aquatic invasive species and polluted water runoff. For over 20 years, NH LAKES has run the Lake Host Program, educating boaters on preventing the spread of invasive species. Additionally, the LakeSmart Lake-Friendly Living Program teaches property owners how to prevent polluted water runoff. Each summer, over 300 volunteer Lake Hosts provide a critical first line of defense against aquatic invasive species at busy boat ramps. Since 2002, the Lake Host Program has provided inspections for over 1.4 million boaters, removing over 1,656 invasive species specimens. NH LAKES' efforts exemplify the power of community engagement and environmental stewardship in preserving New Hampshire's lakes.
Adult - Sarah Slater-Sosa (Whitefield, NH)
Sarah Slater-Sosa, an esteemed environmental leader and educator at White Mountains Regional High School (WMRHS), has made significant contributions to sustainability. As a founding leader of the Society of Sustainable Spartans, she has spearheaded initiatives for waste and energy reduction, organized Earth Day celebrations, and advocated for local environmental protection. In addition to her environmental leadership, Slater-Sosa serves in various roles at WMRHS, including certified Life Sciences and Physical Science teacher, Science Department Head, and member of the Building Leadership Team. She holds a Master’s degree in Public Health, a Master’s degree in Education Leadership in Curriculum Administration, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry. Her dedication to sustainability has had a profound impact on both the school and the wider community.
Student - Jacob McDaniel (Bow, NH)
Jacob McDaniel, a student from Bow High School, NH, has earned recognition for both his academic excellence and deep-seated commitment to community service. Excelling in both STEM and Humanities, Jacob's analytical thinking and self-directed learning have earned him praise from his teachers. Despite qualifying to graduate early, he chose to challenge himself with four AP classes during his senior year. Jacob's community engagement is equally impressive, with significant volunteer work with the Harris Center's Amphibian Brigade Team, where he has helped save over 120 amphibians. His environmental stewardship extends to beach cleanups, invasive plant removal, and volunteering at the SPCA, making him not just an outstanding student, but a dedicated environmental advocate and community volunteer.
Aquarion Water Company is the public water supply company for more than 750,000 people in 72 cities and towns in Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. It is the largest investor-owned water utility in New England and among the seven largest in the U.S. Based in Bridgeport, CT, Aquarion has been in the public water supply business since 1857. Across its operations, Aquarion strives to act as a responsible steward of the environment and to assist the communities it serves in promoting sustainable practices. Aquarion Water Company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Eversource.