2017 Illinois Lakes Conference Recap

The 2017 Illinois Lakes Management Association (ILMA) Annual Conference was held at the Holiday Inn Crystal Lake on March 30-April 1.  Total attendance topped 150 people including the workshop on Saturday.  The conference featured an excellent variety of speakers and topics from NE Illinois and throughout the state and midwest.

The keynote session featured a split speaker session.  The first speaker John Scott Watson provided an interesting  perspective on a book he authored entitled “Prairie Crossing”, based upon the subdivision of that same name in Grayslake, Illinois.  The much talked about subdivision was discussed from concept through completion, including social outtakes and lessons learned.  The second keynote speaker was Joe Keller, the Executive Director of the Fox Waterway Agency (FWA).  Joe presented the current status of the agency, and where they hope to go in the future with the help of the waterway constituents.

Three student scholarships were presented; however with none of the students being able to attend the conference, little was gathered from their perspective line of study.  ILMA hopes both will be available at next year’s conference.  The scholarships are the ILMA scholarship ($1000), the Esser Scholarship ($500), and the Integrated Lakes Management (ILM) scholarship ($1000).  The annual secchi disk auction and conference raffles go to support the annual scholarship funds.

As done annually, the Frank Loftus, Lake Guardian, and Dick Hilton Watershed Awards were handed out at the annual banquet.  The Frank Loftus Awards was presented to William Krokus of the Lake Camelot HOA.  The recipient of the Lake Guardian Award was Leonard Dane of Duechler  Environmental, Inc. and the Dick Hilton Watershed Award was Brian Valleskey of Manhard Consulting, Ltd.  Further write-ups below:

William Krokus, Lake Camelot HOA, Recipient of Frank Loftus Award:

I have attended the ILMA Conferences and various meetings for the last five to six years, always bringing back to my community the information I had learned and what was shared with me regarding lake treatments, monitoring, plans, dredging of lakes from other communities. This information was always shared with my Boards, trying to impress upon them the need for us to begin to do the same. Then on the Board came William (Bill) Krokos. Within a period of 18 months, with many hours, days and even months of research Mr. Krokos took the opportunity and time to personally educate himself and others around him on the importance of our community having a long term lake management plan; of looking for ways to inform members of our current need for a dredging project-which of course had not yet been properly funded. Having met with three prominent outside lake consultants and working with one of them to obtain viable pricing information, he was able to put together a proposal to present to our community for the first time. Although the initial proposal, which would require additional membership funding, was not accepted this first go round, Mr. Krokos has been voted in for another two-year term on our board and is beginning what he says will be a lifelong commitment in seeing that we address all of these issues going forward, including the need to dredge and to properly maintain our lakes. He has been instrumental in getting us in the Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program/SECCHI Monitoring and the beginning of preparation for an application of the 319 Grant.

We are a community of over 625 home, 1040 lots total who were not even a year and a half ago on the radar of addressing ALL of the current needs of our lakes; of properly caring for them or having a great long term lake management plan. Mr Krokos has allowed us the opportunity to begin to address all of these things moving forward and for that I hope we can properly thank him.

Leonard Dane, Duechler Environmental, Inc., Recipient of Lake Guardian Award:

The recipient of the Lake Guardian Award has been a dedicated member of ILMA for many years.  He has served 2 terms as vice president and 2 more years as president.  He spends countless hours behind the scenes for ILMA – planning and organizing the conference locations, registration, exhibitor areas, hotel logistics, on and on.  He also has coordinated many of the PODS.  He is a person that follows through with his commitments and can be depended on to handle issues without a lot of complications or complaints.  His huge efforts toward the continued success of ILMA is much appreciated by everyone involved.

Brian Valleskey, Manhard Consulting, Ltd., Recipient of Dick Hilton Watershed Award:

This gentleman is a dedicated volunteer and professional advocate for watershed protection. As a water resources professional he has spent timeless hours developing strong partnerships and exceptional plans to protect our water here in Illinois and in his native state of Wisconsin. He plays fair with everyone and has been a mentor and friend of ILMA for many years. He is a members of the Technical Advisory Committee for SMC, Greater Pistakee Lake Watershed Partnership, 9 Lakes Watershed Initiative, Upper Des Plaines River Watershed, Buffalo Creek Watershed, Slocum Lake Protection Committee and VLMP for Slocum Lake. He is a past ILMA Board member where he was the brain child behind what is now the ILMA POD series.  Brian Valleskey is this year’s recipient of the Dick Hilton Watershed.

Both reigning Vice President, Ed Lochmayer and President Rich Bahr were re-elected to another term unanimously.

~p0sted by Admin

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