Q&A with the new Executive Director, Patrick Herron

In case you missed it – MyRWA has a new Executive Director! While Patrick Herron is no stranger to the Mystic or the Association (he’s been with MyRWA since 2009), we thought you’d enjoy learning more about him. We took a moment to ask Patrick a few questions.

What do you love most about the Mystic?

The counterintuitive notion that despite these streams and ponds being surrounded by too much development and pavement, they are still teeming with a fascinating biology of fish, plants and insects.

What MyRWA accomplishment are you most proud of?

Perhaps I am most proud of the combined efforts to reduce the impact of water chestnut in the Mystic River - it mobilized so many resources, put the watershed in the public eye and has singlehandedly put thousands of people on the Mystic who would never have had that experience. It is an accomplishment of board, staff, volunteers, municipalities, boat clubs, DCR and private companies.

What are you excited about for the future?

There are so many things I am excited about: First of all, I am excited by the opportunity to work with my talented colleagues on a daily basis. Second, our programs, like the Mystic Greenways Initiative to improve park space and connections, streaming river herring into Mystic classrooms via video to inspire the next generation, improving water quality conditions with nutrient work and new permits, collaborating with partners like Chelsea GreenRoots, Groundwork Somerville and Friends of Malden River among others - and the challenges of building new capacity within the organization to achieve these goals. 

What are some of your favorite activities to do in the Mystic River Watershed?

I enjoy canoeing on the Mystic River and swimming at Shannon Beach with my family.

Congratulations Patrick!