NUTLEY, NJ — The Virginius D. Mattia Memorial Committee has selected Silas Mountsier III as the winner of its 2022 Memorial Award for Distinguished Community Service.
“Each year we have the difficult task of selecting one honoree from a number of outstanding individuals and organizations who have been nominated, but there is no question that Silas Mountsier amply demonstrates the volunteer spirit that my grandfather strongly supported,” said committee President Mark Boffa, who is Mattia’s grandson.
Mattia, a former president of Hoffmann–La Roche Inc., suffered an untimely death in 1971 at the age of 49.
The committee, now in its 49th year, noted Mountsier’s commitment to the township of Nutley when announcing the honor. Some of Mountsier’s early community service focused on the Planning Board, preservation and beautification of the environment, helping families in need, and providing educational opportunities to those unable to afford higher education.
After the United Nations was established in 1945, Mountsier and neighbor Edgar Sargeant bought trees to represent each of the original member countries. They then took shovels in hand and established the U.N. Garden in Kingsland Park. Each year, Mountsier and Graeme Hardie open their amazing gardens to various groups for both educational and fundraising purposes. Mountsier teaches youths about gardening and the importance of maintaining the environment.
The Academic Booster Club, Nutley Family Service Bureau, Nutley Educational Foundation, Nutley Historical Society, Nutley Free Public Library and Vincent United Methodist Church are but a few of the local organizations benefiting from Mountsier’s efforts.
Also being honored is Ilana Robbins, winner of the 2022 Mattia Scholarship. Robbins has been involved in a vast array of volunteer activities throughout her high school years and plans to continue volunteering while in college.
The awards will be presented at Nanina’s-in-the-Park on Wednesday, May 10. Inquiries about the event and ticket purchases may be directed to 973-235-1065.