Northborough committee names conservation land after former DPW director

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By Melanie Petrucci, Contributing Writer

Northborough – Northborough Selectman Jeff Amberson spoke on behalf of the Northborough Municipal Naming Committee and introduced the proposal to name a parcel of conservation land located at 0 Green Street after the late John Schunder.

The Municipal Naming Committee is a body consisting of five members: Dana Labb, selectmen Leslie Rutan and Jeff Amberson, James Bruce and Town Clerk Andrew Dowd. The committee’s charge is to name public facilities and public places such as the Town Common project which is on hold for the time being.

Dowd presented the proposal to name the parcel which was purchased by the town in 2012 in honor of the late John Schunder, a lifelong town resident and former Department of Public Works (DPW) director who retired in 2006 after 34 years of service.

“Many of the parks and memorials in town are a direct result of his efforts and leadership – the improvements made at Assabet Park, construction of the Ellsworth-McAfee Park and fields are a direct result of his leadership,” Dowd said. “John loved Northborough and in addition to his DPW duties he was instrumental in starting the lacrosse program at Algonquin and volunteered as varsity lacrosse coach.”

According to Dowd, the parcel in question on Green Street was in the Schunder family for several generations. The family had been approached to sell to several developers but instead chose to preserve it for the town and future generations to enjoy.

“It has always been known as Schunder’s field and this is a fitting tribute to John to be officially recognized as such,” he noted.

“I can’t think of a name that would be more fitting,” said Selectman Dawn Rand. “We all knew John and how much he gave to the town so this is very appropriate.”

The rest of the board concurred and the proposal was unanimously approved.