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Bill Conway, ice arena namesake and former Nashua Corp. CEO, dies

By Staff | Dec 31, 2011

NASHUA – Bill Conway, who joined Nashua Corp. as an engineer and rose to become its president before founding the Conway Management Co., passed away Thursday. He was 85.

Conway was notable for his many charitable contributions, including the family’s donation that made Conway Ice Arena possible.

The ice arena was named for the Conways after the family’s contribution of $1.5 million made the 1,050-seat facility possible.

In his work as a management consultant, Conway was notable for being one of the first business leaders in the country to tout the work of Edwards Deming, who became one of the century’s most influential management consultants.

A 1981 Telegraph story, for example, told of Conway urging the Nashua Chamber of Commerce to pay attention to Deming’s work because its emphasis on quality control and production was creating a Japanese business behemoth.

“We are all doomed in this country if we can’t … push through these methods,” he told the chamber 30 years ago.

Conway grew up in Lowell, Mass., and graduated from the Naval Academy in 1948. He moved to Nashua in 1954 when he joined Nashua Corp.

He was a supporter of many charities including the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Nashua, Rivier College with its recent library and gymnasium expansions, and St. Patrick Church as well as the Conway Ice Arena.

His wife of 62 years, Jane (Bowler) Conway, died in March.

He leaves several children and grandchildren in greater Nashua.



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