Steering Committee

The Narragansett Bay Estuary Program is overseen by a Steering Committee of key individuals representing environmental and resource management agencies, nonprofit environmental groups, academic institutions, and other important stakeholders in both Rhode Island and Massachusetts. The Steering Committee provides a unique forum to foster a collaborative and coordinated approach to critical issues affecting the Narragansett Bay watershed. Through consensus, the Steering Committee guides the implementation of the Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan, establishes program priorities, and approves annual work plans (see Narragansett Bay Estuary Program Guiding Principles for Program Management).

The Steering Committee meets quarterly and an Executive Committee, noted below (*), act on behalf of the Steering Committee between quarterly meetings.

For 2019, the Steering Committee’s quarterly meetings are held from 10:30am – 2:30 pm:

  • March 6, 2019
  • June 12, 2019
  • September 11, 2019
  • December 4, 2019

For 2020, the Steering Committee’s quarterly meetings will be held from 10:00am – 2:00pm:

  • March 25, 2020
  • June 12, 2020
  • September 23, 2020
  • December 23, 2020


Judith Swift, Director *
Coastal Institute, University of Rhode Island

Committee Members

James Boyd, Coastal Policy Analyst
Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council

Eric Boettger, Resource Conservationist
United States Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service – Rhode Island

Priscilla Chapman, President
Taunton River Watershed Alliance

Pieter de Jong, Board member
Blackstone River Coalition

Walter Galloway, Public Member
Rhode Island Rivers Council

Laura Blake, Director of the Watershed Planning Program*
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection

David Janik, South Coastal Regional Coordinator
Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management

Robert Johnston, Professor of Economics
Director, George Perkins Marsh Institute
Clark University

Susan Kiernan, Deputy Chief *
Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, Office of Water Resources

John King, Professor of Oceanography *
Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island

Tom Kutcher, Wetlands Scientist
Rhode Island Natural History Survey

Regina Lyons, Section Chief, Ocean and Coastal Protection Unit *
United States Environmental Protection Agency – Region 1 (New England)

Laurie Horridge, Executive Director
Narragansett Bay Commission

Bill Napolitano, Environmental Program Director
Southeastern Regional Planning & Economic Development District

E. Heidi Ricci, Assistant Director of Advocacy *
Mass Audubon

Karla H. Sangrey, Engineer-Director/ Treasurer
Upper Blackstone Clean Water 

Cassius Spears Sr., Tribal Member of the Narragansett Tribe

Bob Stankelis, Reserve Manager
Narragansett Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve

Jonathan Stone, Executive Director *
Save The Bay

Susan Sullivan, Executive Director *
New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission

David Taylor, Associate Professor of Marine Biology
Roger Williams University

John O’Brien, Policy/Partnership Specialist
The Nature Conservancy – Rhode Island Chapter

Nick Wildman, Priority Projects Coordinator*
Massachusetts Department of Fish and Game – Division of Ecological Restoration

Host Entity:

New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission

New England Interstate Water Pollution Control CommissionIn 2012, the Management Committee selected the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC) to serve as the host entity for the Estuary Program. NEIWPCC is a congressionally authorized non-profit interstate organization, formed in 1947. NEIWPCC’s programmatic direction is decided by its Commission of 35 persons appointed by the governors of its member states; Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The Commission serves its member states by coordinating efforts that encourage cooperation among the states, developing resources that foster progress on water issues, representing the region in matters of federal policy, training environmental professionals, managing programs and administrating grants, initiating and overseeing scientific research, educating the public, and providing overall leadership in water management and protection. NEIWPCC’s core work covers a variety of topics related to clean water including wastewater and onsite systems, water quality standards, wetlands, pollution abatement, stormwater, source water and groundwater, climate change, and nonpoint source pollution. The Commission has its headquarters in Lowell, Massachusetts with various satellite offices throughout the region.