30th Annual Membership Meeting and Conference

“Managing Lakes in a Changing World”

NY Federation of Lake Associations (NYFOLA)


OWLA Board members Jim Beckwith and Bob Brower recently attended the Annual Conference of the NY Federation of Lake Associations, an organization to which OWLA belongs. The conference was held at the White Eagle Conference Center in Hamilton, NY, on May 3 and 4,  where it has been held for many years under the careful guidance of NYFOLA Director Nancy Mueller.


Jim and Bob left Auburn early Friday morning and arrived in time to split up and attend different concurrent workshops beginning at 9:30 am and running until 3:30 pm during the day and then networked with other Lake Association members during lunch and dinner and into the early evening; they did the same thing on Saturday, arriving home at about 4 pm Saturday.

Bob and Jim attended the following workshops on Friday: “Invasive Species Won’t Wait: Launching An Integrated Approach to Stop Their Spread”, “Planning Consideration for Starting Your Own Voluntary Boat Inspection Steward Program”, The Raquette Lake Experience: Internet Based, Video Launch Ramp Monitoring System”,  “Around the State: Finger Lakes Institute Watercraft Steward Program; “The Algae and Nutrient Management Session, Health Implications: What Are We Learning in New York State”, “HAB Monitoring Results: What Are We Finding in New York?”,” Phoslock, A New Product for Nutrient Control in Sediments”, “What Is A Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Cleaning Up Chautauqua Lake”, “Managing Nutrient in the Watershed: A Pennsylvania Case Study”, and “Source Water Protection for Public Water Supplies (and other Lakes).”


On Saturday they attended:  “The Hydrilla Invasion,”Hydrilla in New York: Where It Is and Why We Care”, “The Cayuga Infestation: What it Takes to Manage Hydrilla”, and “Changing Climate, Changing Lakes.”

Time was also provided during breaks to review vendor displays and discuss new products and services ranging from some very innovative benthic mapping and bathymetric techniques to getting more information about a new product that binds phosphorus and reduces nutrient and algae blooms, and web services specifically targeting Lake Associations.


This was a very, very information-intensive conference because of the format and content, and as a result, both were surprised to find it energizing and exhausting at the same time.  The attendance at the conference was sponsored by OWLA, and we learned other lake associations were doing the same thing; the Black Lake Association sponsors 5 members every year. 

The OWLA ambassadors have brought back a great deal of information and have arranged to have a video conference presentation for the Board called “Increasing Your Membership and Volunteerism,” by Frank Shipp, President of the Membership Committee, Ballston Lake Association.  OWLA Program Chair Gilda Brower will be establishing a date for this presentation in the near future.