Nestell K. "Ned" Anderson was a dairy farmer living in Sherman, Connecticut, when his life took a dramatic turn in 1929. While walking in the woods, he met Judge Arthur Perkins, who was active in the movement to build the Appalachian Trail. Judge Perkins in turn introduced Ned to that legendary dynamo of the A.T. movement, Myron Avery. Ned and Avery soon became fast friends. Soon after they met him, Avery and Perkins gave Anderson the responsibility for creating the 70-mile route of the AT in Connecticut. He personally mapped and built much of the A.T. in that state, and for a time he was the sole maintainer. Anderson also organized the Housatonic Trail Club in 1932 to help maintain the trail.
Margaret Drummond became active in her beloved Georgia Appalachian Trail Club in the late 1950s. She eventually became President in 1977. During her leadership of GATC, Margaret made the attracting and mentoring of new members a top priority. She also served on the ATC Board for 26 years, including six years as Vice Chair for the Southern Region and six years as Chair of the Board. It was an exciting time when ATC’s responsibilities were expanding. She led a drive to keep the volunteer aspect of Trail management at the forefront, while also emphasizing the importance of ATC as the Trail's unifying umbrella organization. She accomplished all this in addition to her "day job" as chair of the microbiology department at Emory University.
Stanley A. Murray. When the Appalachian Trail was finally “completed” in 1937, it was about 45% on private property. Myron Avery said it would never be really finished until it received Federal protection. Once he became Chair of ATC, Stanley A. Murray decided to start doing something about it. He began lobbying Congress for legislation to protect the Appalachian Trail. The effort to protect the AT caught the attention of President Lyndon B. Johnson, who began promoting a whole system of trails that would span the nation. That became the National Trails System Act of 1968, which named the A.T as the first National Scenic Trail. Without Stan Murray, we probably would not have the corridor that today permanently protects most of our beloved Appalachian Trail.
Raymond H. Torrey. After Benton MacKaye wrote his famous article proposing an Appalachian Trail, it was Raymond Torrey who first publicized the idea of a 2,000-mile trail. Torrey was a newspaper journalist, best known for his New York Post column, “The Long Brown Path.” He used his column to promote MacKaye's idea. Torrey also personally organized volunteers, scouted the proposed trails, and headed up the crews that built the trails. His first effort, the Ramapo-Dunderberg Trail, became, in 1923, the very first section of the Appalachian Trail. Torrey helped organize the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference, the principal organization to begin work on the Appalachian Trail in those states. Torrey was also one of the key organizers behind the first Appalachian Trail Conference.
The 2015 Class was honored at the Fifth Appalachian Trail Hall of Fame Banquet, on June 5, 2015. HERE is a gallery of photos from the Banquet.