Brunswick, ME — Edward (Ned) Perry Harding of Brunswick and Georgetown Island, Maine, died February 2, at Maine Medical Center in Portland, surrounded by his family. Born in Boston in 1923, the sixth of seven children of Francis Austin Harding and Dorothy Sherburne Warner, Ned attended Dexter School in Brookline and Noble and Greenough School in Dedham, Massachusetts. He graduated from Harvard University, class of 1945.
Ned was a natural hands-on leader, volunteer, entrepreneur, and benefactor of and within communities he had lived. He followed his passion and talent for photography by starting his career with Time-Life in New York City. More than 50 years ago he co-founded the still extant Harding Glidden Photography Studio in Dedham, Massachusetts, where he was lead photographer, shooting hundreds of society weddings and family portraits throughout the Northeast.
In the late 1950s Ned became part owner and President of Edson Corporation in Boston, Massachusetts, an internationally renowned marine hardware and steering systems manufacturer. One of the country's oldest corporations, Edson designed the 1905 Schooner America's steering system, beginning a long association with America's Cup defenders.
A firm believer in free enterprise, Ned took a work break and volunteered his services for more than a year as Assistant Director of National Volunteers for the 1960 Nixon for President Campaign in Washington, D.C. Ned held the following positions back in his home state of Maine: Head of the Maine Nixon for President Committee and Maine United Citizens for Nixon-Agnew, Chairman of the Maine Committee for Re-election of the President, Maine Delegation Chairman and Presidential Elector for Maine at the Republican National Convention in 1972.
Ned got back into the photography business with the purchase of Bicknell Photo Service, a 12-person photo finishing operation on Free Street in Portland, Maine in 1964. His commitment to his employees, vision for the future and high production standards ensured the company’s success. When he sold this business to Konica Corporation in 1993, Ned had more than 1,200 employees with market share second only to Kodak Corporation.