Torrey Reade ’72

24 July 2017

Class: 1972

Major: English

Residence: Harmersville-Canton Rd

Deceased: July 16, 2017

Torrey Read died on Sunday, July 16th, 2017, after a year-long struggle with cancer. She was 66.Born and raised in Wayland, MA, Torrey attended public schools and graduated from Carleton College in 1972. For seven years, she worked in the broadcast division of WGBH, Boston’s public television station, helping to introduce such innovative programming as an LGBT pledge night. After graduating from Harvard Business School in 1981, she worked for several large financial institutions and moved to Reade Street in Manhattan. In 1985, she launched the first of several investment funds with business partner Frank Garcia, specializing in distressed companies.A voracious reader who could recall the plots and passages of novels she’ read twenty years previously, Torrey felt unfulfilled by Wall Street life. She began growing flower and vegetables on the fire escape of her Tribeca co-op, then built a massive roof garden. In 1989, she bought an historic brick farmhouse in Salem, NJ, and spent many years restoring not only the house but also the 125 acres of fields that surrounded it. The result was Neptune Farm, an organic farm that raised asparagus, blueberries, beef, and lamb. At her 20th Carleton reunion she reconnected with Dick McDermott, at artist and her college boyfriends, who joined her on the farm.Torrey was grateful to all the neighbors and organizations who had helped her learn to farm, and felt obliged to return the favor. For the rest of her life, she gave back to the community with her financial, intellectual, and organization skills. She wrote grants, sat on boards, and advocated for historic preservation, farmers’ markets, and solar power. She presented at farming conferences, mentored younger farmers, and was a member of the board of the New Jersey Farm Service Agency, the New Jersey Agriculture Development Committee, Northeast Organic Farming Association, and the Salem County Historical Society.She is survived by her husband, Dick McDermott; her mother, Suzanne Pearson; siblings Claire, Julia, and Nat Reade; nieces Emma Steinberg and Sophie Duncan; nephews Evan Steinberg, Wilder Duncan, Henry Reade, and Charley Reade; aunt Barbara Levings; as well as in-laws and cousins.

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