John J. Carroll served on the MWRA Board of Directors as its Vice Chair since the authority’s inception in 1985, representing the MWRA Advisory Board. He was the only original member to have served so long. Under his leadership, MWRA sited and built the new Deer Island Treatment Plant and pelletizing facility, turning Boston Harbor from the dirtiest in the county to the sparkling jewel we all now enjoy. MWRA also completely modernized one of the nation’s great water systems – from watershed protection, to the 17.6 mile MetroWest Tunnel, to seven covered water storage facilities, and, of course, to the state-of-the-art water treatment plant that bears his name. He held himself and us to a very high standard, which set the tone for the MWRA.
In 2017, Mr. Carroll retired after serving as the Town Manager of Norwood for 39 years. He had previously served as Superintendent of Public Works and Town Engineer for Lexington. And from 1974 to 1978, Mr. Carroll was Commissioner of Public Works for Massachusetts. He graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in Civil Engineering. To John Carroll, being a civil engineer was not a job, it was a calling. He was a great mentor to other Board members, many MWRA staff members and countless others who he met along the way. A Boston Globe article from 2015 paid tribute to his public service. He was also an author, self-publishing a novel, “What Did Ted Have?” at the age of 91.
Mr. Carroll leaves his wife, Penny, 18 children, dozens of grandchildren and great grandchildren, and friends too numerous to count.
The Norwood Historical Society has posted a detailed obituary, which details the many causes he championed and the many lives he touched.