William J. "Bill" Pressley

  • Born: December 25, 1940
  • Died: February 19, 2018
  • Location: Newton Centre, Massachusetts

Eaton & Mackay Funeral Home

465 Centre St
Newton, MA 02458

Info@eatonfuneralhomes.com
Tel. (617) 244-2034

Tribute & Message From The Family


William Pressley FASLA LEED AP, Landscape Architect
Bill Pressley of Newton Centre, MA passed peacefully on February 19, 2018 at the age of 77. Beloved husband, best friend, and business partner of Marion Pressley. Bill was the devoted father of Elaine Johnson and her husband Ronald L. Johnson, and much loved grandfather of Ryan Lee Johnson and Rowan Louis Johnson of Valencia, CA. Brother of Carolyn Pressley and her husband Marshall of Belfast, ME, Sam (James) Pressley of Bisbee, AZ and Patty Steele and her husband Glen of Camilus, NY.
Born in 1940 on Christmas Day in Trenton NJ to Walter and Wilma Pressley, Bill enjoyed biking and golfing and classic cars, but was defined by his love of design and its ability to improve the lives of everyone.
A graduate of the State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, New York, in 1967 with a Bachelor's degree in Landscape Architecture Bill dedicated his life to the built environment. Bill was a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects and member of the Boston Society of Landscape Architects, the Society for College & University Planning, and the Urban Land Institute. He was the President and founder of Pressley Associates, Landscape Architects. Working with his wife and partner, Marion Pressley, developed a reputation as an innovative design firm capable of inventive and sensitive responses to challenging site programs. As a LEED-accredited practitioner, Bill brought his commitment to sustainability and green design to a broad range of academic, institutional, corporate, and residential work.
Bill's early years of practice included the current footprints of Harvard Square in Cambridge, Faneuil Hall Marketplace and Marketplace Center in Boston, for which he received special recognition at the White House. In 2009, the American Institute of Architects bestowed the prestigious Twenty- Five Year Award on Faneuil Hall Marketplace. In 1992, Bill was honored at the White House for his work in transforming the Northeastern University Campus (Boston) to a beautiful urban, pedestrian and transit-oriented campus.


Condolence & Memory Journal

Bill was not only a creative and talented landscape architect. He was a patient teacher,, mentor and friend.
I worked for Bill for 2 summers while i was at the Harvard GSD, back when his office was in his beautiful victorian house in Newton. I think he only had 4 employees at the time. The office was on the 3rd floor and it got quite warm. He decided it was time to put the air conditioners in for the season when the mylar started sticking to my arms and the ink was dissolving. Specs were literally cut and pasted. Bill bought his first computer and first 11x17 photocopy machine that summer. I remember building models on the porch with Szabo, his vegetarian dalmation keeping me company. I learned a lot from Bill by listening to the way he dealt with employees, clients and contractors, always with a gentle, soft-spoken confident manner, with respect and a wonderful sense of humor. Things i learned from Bill stayed with me throughout my career and to this day. I was very sad to learn of his passing.

Posted by Bruce Leish - Newport, RI   June 28, 2018

Watching the Faneuil Hall landscape take shape at BTA was an education in city making and how to create a historically appropriate urban environment. Bill will be missed for that and his sunny personality. My condolences to Marion and the rest of his family.

Posted by Richard Smith - Swampscott, MA - Coworker   June 21, 2018

To the entire Pressley family,
Our thoughts and prayers are with you during these difficult times.
Michael D. Farias and family

Posted by Michael Farias - Fall River, MA - Friend   June 14, 2018


I just recently learned of Bill's passing and wanted to express my sympathies to his family and friends. Bill was a classmate, teammate and fraternity brother at Fayetteville-Manlius High School outside of Syracuse. I remember him as a very considerate and thoughtful friend with a quick wit and always a smile on his face. I'm sure that all of you miss Bill greatly.

If possible, I would like to attend Bill's Celebration of Life on June 25th. My contact information is listed below. Thank you and best regards,

Tom Day
Cell: 978-764-6089

Posted by Tom Day - Marblehead, MA - Classmate   June 04, 2018

Bill Pressley helped make Boston, Cambridge, Lowell and other Massachusetts cities more pedestrian-friendly and aesthetically pleasing with his landscape and cityscape expertise. Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Harvard Square, Kenmore Square, Piers Park in East Boston, and many other public areas, as well as private landscapes, would never have reached their full potential without him. As his Marketing Director, I was proud to promote him to the world. Rest in peace, Billyour green (and red brick) thumb greened greater Boston as few did.

Posted by Todd Larson - Watertown, MA - Coworker   May 17, 2018

Dear Marion, Elaine, and extended Pressley family, Please accept my most sincere condolences and deepest sympathy on your loss. Bill was my first employer, while I was still studying at the GSD for my MLA back in summer of 1981. The office was still in the attic of your house in Newton Centre then, and in between coloring site plans, my job was to paint the interior of the loft in the carriage house. The work that summer was interesting and the other staff people I met then are people I ended up knowing for life, several of whom have become stars in their own right as landscape architects. One cute warning I remember one staff person giving me was to beware the days when Bill wore all khaki. That meant his drill sargent side was going to appear that day. It was never as bad as it sounded though. Bill was fair and clearly dedicated to excellence. It was good for me to be exposed to that in my very first job. I will always be grateful to him for that opportunity. I am sorry that I won't make it to the memorial service on June 25th. I will be traveling out of the country at that time. Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you all. Sincerely, John Amodeo

Posted by John Amodeo - Boston, MA - Coworker   April 11, 2018

So sad to hear, ohhh no you were such a good person to us, kind,lovely and happy.We shall miss you.RIP

Posted by Harriet Nakamanyisa - Waltham, MA - Significant Other   April 09, 2018

Dear Family of Bill:
I worked at Northeastern University for 35 years, retiring as Senior Vice President for Development. Bill transformed the Boston campus to a delightful welcoming urban campus with distinctive lighting, walkways, lawns, shrubbery and seating areas. The ascendance of Northeastern and the desire that young people have to attend Northeastern is, in large part, due to Bill. On a personal note, Bill gave wonderful advice to me and my wife regarding landscape design of our first home home in Wayland.
I will always remember Bill as a talented professional and a wonderful gentleman.
With condolences,
Gene Reppucci,
Wayland, MA

Posted by Gene Reppucci - Wayland, MA   March 16, 2018

Ibby and I were saddened to hear of Bill's passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

Ibby and Jose Lizardo

Posted by jose lizardo - plymouth, MA - Friend   March 08, 2018

To Mariam, family and associates; My wife and I were stunned to hear of Bill, passing. He was an extraordinary practitioner, full of creative energy and a wonderful friend. The many Fidelity Investments campuses and real estate endeavors will stand as testaments to Bill's contextual design talents. I will forever be in his debt. Our deepest sympathies, Lee & Melvin Wesley

Posted by Melvin Wesley - Pawtucket, RI - Family Friend   March 04, 2018

Candle

Bill was a longtime business associate. His knowledge, professionalism and friendship will be greatly missed. Bill and I did work the Quincy Market project together with him being the great designer and I helped with working out the lighting. This was just one example of the success that he brought me. We became good friends over the years and I am sadden over his loss. God Bless you Bill.

Posted by Robert DeSantis - Andover, MA - Family Friend   March 04, 2018

It is hard to believe that he is gone. He will live forever in the hearts of those who loved him and in his designs. He has made the world a better place

Posted by Diana Mollema - Colts Neck, NJ - Family   March 02, 2018

Marion,
Bruce and I are so saddened to hear about Bill's passing. We have such fond memories of you both from back in the old days when you first arrived in Cambridge. We hold those memories dear. Much love to you and yours.
Ann and Bruce Creager

Posted by Ann Creager    March 02, 2018

The Board of the Metropolitan Waterworks Museum sends its deepest sympathies to our colleague and friend, Marion.

Posted by Metropolitan Waterworks Museum - Chestnut Hilll, MA   March 02, 2018

The Metropolitan Waterworks Museum is saddened to learn of the loss of the husband of our esteemed colleague and Museum Trustee, Marion. Our collective thoughts are with you and your family.

Posted by Metropolitan Waterworks Museum - Chestnut Hill, MA   March 02, 2018

My husband, John, and Bill worked together on many projects. He was a talented landscape architect. John had great respect for him and enjoyed the friendship they shared. My deepest sympathy goes out to Marion and the family.

Posted by Judy Schumacher - Chatham, MA - Friend   March 01, 2018

Saddened to hear of Bill's passing, he was a lovely man and one of the nicest people that I had the privilege to work with in the Cambridge Avenue office.
Much love and many condolences to Marion, Elaine and their family at this sad time,
Fiona Barton (Chamberlain), Intern LA from Scotland UK in 1997

Posted by Fiona Chamberlain - Kelowna, BC, Canada - Coworker   March 01, 2018