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Kim Nilsen speaks as he accepts his award from Joseph McQuaid, left, publisher of the New Hampshire Union Leader and Joseph Reilly, NH regional president of Eastern Bank during the annual Granite State Legacy Awards held at Manchester Community College in Manchester on Wednesday. (Thomas Roy/Union Leader)

Legacy Award recipients 'strengthen us all'

MANCHESTER — Four individuals and one family were presented Wednesday with Granite State Legacy Awards, an honor that recognizes decades of devotion to New Hampshire, its way of life, and its people.

The recipients appeared at a celebration held at the Manchester Community College and hosted by the New Hampshire Union Leader. The Legacy Awards are sponsored by Eastern Bank.

“These awards celebrate the accomplishments of some of New Hampshire’s most distinguished citizens, those who have given the most to our state through business, philanthropy, politics and more,” said Joseph W. McQuaid, president of the Union Leader Corp.

Recipients are:

• The Putnam family, which launched one of the industrial mainstays of the Keene area, the Markem Corporation.

• Retired executive councilors Ruth Griffin of Portsmouth and Bernie Streeter of Nashua.

• Manchester resident Howard Brodsky, the co-founder of CCA Global Partners.

• Kim Nilsen of Spofford, founder of the Cohos Trail Association.

“I’m really humbled by this,” said Griffin, who spent 20 years on the Executive Council. She remains active, currently serving as chairman of the Portsmouth Housing Authority.

In her remarks, Griffin recited poetry and joked about her long list of accomplishments.

“I never really kept track of them,” Griffin said. “I wasn’t putting together a list to put on my tombstone.”

Nilsen challenged everyone to get a backpack and take to the trail.

“I love doing what I do. I’m flabbergasted you’ve taken me out of the woods for this award,” Nilsen said.

This is the fourth year that the New Hampshire Union Leader has presented the annual awards.

The event drew more than 100 people — colleagues, co-workers, friends and family of the recipients.

“You all have spent a lifetime strengthening New Hampshire,” Gov. Maggie Hassan said. “When they do speak up about a need, an issue, when they do take action, they strengthen us all.”


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