TREAT--Hon. William Wardwell, died Sunday, January 10, at the age of 91 at Naples Community Hospital following a heart attack. Judge Treat was a retired diplomat, banker, and judge who lived in Stratham, NH, and Naples, FL. He was born May 23, 1918 to Joshua and Clara Atwood Treat of Winterport, ME. He was appointed by President Reagan in 1987 and in 1990 by President Bush as a delegate to the General Assembly of the United Nations focusing on international human rights. In 1988 he was elected by the United Nations Human Rights Commission as the US member of the Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities at the UN Human Rights Centre in Geneva for a four year term. Mr. Treat was judge of probate in New Hampshire from 1958-83. He founded the National College of Probate Judges in 1968 and was its first President. The Treat Award, presented to the judge who has done the most for the improvement of US probate law, includes among its recipients former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. In New Hampshire he was chairman of the Judicial Council and author of a 3-volume text on probate law, Treat on Probate. He was the chairman of the Administrative Committee for District and Municipal Courts and author of a study which resulted in a reorganization and consolidation of the local court system in New Hampshire. In 1958 he founded Bank Meridian, a national bank with offices on the New Hampshire seacoast. It was sold in 1985 to Amoskeag Bank Shares of Manchester, NH. Mr. Treat also served as a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston; was chairman of the Towle Manufacturing Company of Newburyport, MA, a director of the Colonial Group, Inc. of Boston, and of Unitil, Inc. of New Hampshire. Judge Treat was a graduate of the University of Maine and Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration. He received an honorary doctor of laws degree from the University of Maine in 1992 and the University New Hampshire in 2001. In 1991 he received the Silver Shingle Award, the highest alumni award presented by the Law School of Boston University. Plymouth (NH) College awarded him the "Granite State Citizen Award" for outstanding citizenship in 1988. He established the Treat Scholarship at the University of Maine for needy students. Judge Treat was chairman of the NH Republican Party from 1954-58 and a member of the Republican National Committee from 1960-64. He served as secretary of the United States Electoral College from 1956-64. He was a delegate to the Republican National Conventions in 1956, '60, '64, and '88. He was chairman of the program committee of the 1964 Republican Convention in San Francisco. Judge Treat was a direct descendant of Governor Robert Treat, colonial governor of Connecticut for 40 years, and a collateral descendant of Robert Treat Paine, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. He was a member of the Society of the Cincinnati, the Society of Mayflower Descendants, and a former governor of the Society of Colonial Wars. He was also a governor of the American Independence Museum in Exeter, NH, and a trustee of Franklin Pierce College in Rindge, NH. He established the Treat Foundation, a family charitable trust devoted to various charitable purposes. He is survived by his wife, the former Vivian S. Baker, son Jonathan B. Treat II of Belmont, MA, daughter Mary Esther C. Treat of Burlington, VT, grandchildren Elizabeth Treat Stetson and Hilary Thompson Treat of Washington, DC and Joshua Atwood Treat, of Belmont, MA. A funeral will be held at Trinity-by-the-Cove, Naples, FL on Saturday, January 23 at 11am. In lieu of flowers the family suggests contributions to the William Treat Scholarship Fund of the Treat Foundation (c/o Ms. Joey Stroble, PO Box 800, Stratham, NH 03885). In addition, a memorial service will be held in Exeter, NH, at a date to be determined. www.fullerfuneralhome.com
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Published in The New York Times on Jan. 14, 2010