Refuse to Use Representative of the Year announced

LONDONDERRY, Vt. – Chris Nolan, a longtime volunteer with The Collaborative’s Refuse to Use program and Burr and Burton faculty member, awarded Refuse To Use Representative of the 2019-2020 program’s year. Nolan is the inaugural recipient of the accolade.


Chris Nolan is The Collaborative's Refuse to Use representative of the year.
Chris Nolan is The Collaborative’s Refuse to Use representative of the year. Photo provided

Natalie Philpot, director of the program, stated, “The mission of the Refuse to Use program this year was to promote both the emotional and physical wellbeing of scholars in our community, as well as provide healthy alternative activities. Chris Nolan has been a tremendous asset to the Refuse to Use program for a number of years and has promoted our message. He is consistently willing to go above and beyond for all students in the program.”

Nolan remarked, “It’s been a pleasure to help with the Refuse to Use program all these years. Educating young people about substances and offering incentives to be involved in healthier activities is important work and it’s encouraging that the community has shown such strong support over the years. What’s more, I think that the changes made last year to shift the focus of the program to encompass more overall health is fabulous.”

The Collaborative launched the award to recognize the volunteer representatives’ dedication and leadership highlighting the program’s mission and philosophy of supporting young people’s healthy choices. In March 2020, 400 participating students, their parents and caring adults, and RTU representatives from seven participating schools were asked to nominate a RTU representative who exemplified the values and spirit of the RTU program. Nolan received the overwhelming number of nominations and accolades.

Mark Tashjian, Burr and Burton Academy’s headmaster, stated, “Chris Nolan is a beloved Spanish teacher who brings his gifts in the classroom to the Refuse to Use program. Chris is deserving of any and all recognition, and we appreciate his role in helping to keep young people substance-free.”

Chris Nolan will receive the award at the program’s annual Refuse to Use kick-off Sunday, Sept. 27 at Riley Rink. Final details for the program’s kick-off will be announced later this summer.

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