New Board Nominee

Robin Baran (Avon)

I was fortunate to grow up near the North Granby Gorge on a 50 acre farm, with parents who instilled in me from a young age the need to preserve and protect our natural resources. These past few years found me running a local non-profit which successfully sought to preserve open space and vital wetlands along the Farmington River in Avon. This experience led to the thrilling discovery of what can happen when a community comes together with a shared cause. A long-time admirer of the important work of FRWA, I am proud to serve on its Board of Directors.


Nominees for Renewed Three Year Terms

Chip Harrison (West Suffield)

From West Suffield, Chip Harrison has served as a director with FRWA since 2016.  He shares, “I got involved with FRWA after talking about it with Aimee Petras who is a close friend.  As an avid fly fisherman, she knew how much I love being on the river and thought being a part of the organization would be a good fit, and she was right!  It has been an honor to be a part of this wonderful organization and to help spread the word about all of the incredible work they do to ensure the preservation of what is truly a remarkable resource.

I have an extensive background working for non-profit organizations, mostly in development and communications with a little event planning thrown in.  I have tried to apply that background to helping FRWA achieve its goals as a member of event planning and development committees over the years I have served.  I feel like a good board member has a passion for the organization’s mission and will work towards advocating for that mission however possible.  All of the board members I have served with at FRWA certainly epitomize that and I am proud to be a part of such an amazing group of dedicated people.”

John Laudati (Granby)

John Laudati is Vice President of the FRWA and has served for 30 years as one of its Directors. John is a Charter member and former President of the Granby Chapter of UNICO, Current President of Granby Chamber of Commerce and Current President of the CT Boxing Hall of Fame, He was a Past President of the Manitook Lake Association. He formerly served as a Director of the Salmon Brook Watershed Association. He currently sits on the Granby Inland Wetlands Commission.

John is Secretary of the Hartford County Bar Association. He was a founding associate editor of “The Defense”, Journal of the Connecticut Defense Lawyers. He formerly lectured at the Connecticut Bar Association’s People’s Court and Young Lawyers Practice and Procedure Seminar Series. John is currently the Secretary of the Hartford County Bar Association. He regularly lectures practicing attorneys on civil procedure and trial techniques. This past year he was inducted by the Connecticut Bar Foundation as a Coopers Fellow. He has garnered numerous other awards for his work as an attorney.

FRWA will be forever grateful for his efforts to secure the Frey property as an asset to the organization. 

Deborah Leonard (Simsbury)

Deborah Leonard is in her 15th year serving as a director with FRWA.  She shares, “FRWA is a wonderful organization that protects our natural treasure.  I’ve enjoyed doing river clean-ups every autumn.  I designed jewelry for FRWA that Selig Jewelers sells to benefit the river.  I’ve done all kind of posters for special events and participated in wonderful workshops over the years.”


John E. Robinson (New Britain)

“I have an MBA in Finance/Marketing. I work for Hartford Economic Development Corporation (HEDCO), a non-profit organization. In my position I do underwriting for small business loans. I joined the FRWA board, I believe around 10 years ago, because I had an interest in the environment and cleaning up the water ways”.


Victor Schoen (Avon)

Vic is a retired attorney who has lived in Avon for the past 28 years. Vic became a FRWA Board Member to support the health of the Farmington River.