2018 Volunteer Stream Monitoring Award Winners

Since 2002, the University of Wisconsin-Extension and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources have recognized exemplary work in volunteer stream monitoring in Wisconsin with the Volunteer Stream Monitoring Awards Program. Individuals and groups are recognized for their efforts leading to increased participation in stream monitoring, collecting valuable stream data, and sharing their knowledge of stream monitoring with others.  The 2016 award recipients were honored recently during the annual Water Action Volunteers Symposium, held April 1-2 in Stevens Point, WI.

The University of Wisconsin-Extension and the Department of Natural Resources present the Wisconsin Stream Monitoring Awards annually to recognize volunteers, employees and teachers for their commitment to monitoring, collecting data, raising awareness and sharing knowledge about Wisconsin streams.

Congratulations to this year's winners!

2016 Award Winners

(From right to left) Peggy Compton, Water Action Volunteers Coordinator, UW-Extension; Ilana Haimes, Water Action Volunteers Coordinator, DNR; Jean Abreau; Bob Jozwowski, Central Wisconsin Trout Unlimited; John Delaney, Valley Stewardship Network; John Zehren
and Joe Fritsch, Southern Brown Conservation Club; WDNR Monitoring Section Chief, Tim Asplund; Patricia Cicero accepting for Jaime Weigel.

See more photos of the 2018 Award Winners here!

Central Wisconsin Trout Unlimited Riverkeepers

The Central Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited has been involved in water monitoring for over ten years, modeling the positive impacts of gaining and sharing knowledge through citizen science.  The Riverkeepers monitor 25 sites in multiple counties while continuing to seek new volunteers and new stream sites. They work closely with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) staff to monitor high priority streams where data is needed, and where their monitoring can save DNR staff time and money. The CWTU is also involved in the assessment of fish habitat structures, streambank restoration, and the expansion of water quality projects.

Bill and Debbu Hiller

Bill and Debbi Hiller, as trained Water Action Volunteers with the Crawford Stewardship Project (CSP), show their dedication for water quality monitoring and conservation through an eagerness to learn new things and take on new responsibilities. The Hillers have attended advanced training sessions in macroinvertebrate identification and aquatic ecology, and have participated in phosphorus monitoring and CSP’s Karst Survey of Crawford County Project. Bill and Debbi also willingly share their knowledge and support new volunteer monitors.

John Delaney

John Delaney, the Water Quality Program Coordinator for Valley Stewardship Network (VSN) was nominated for his extensive water quality activities while acting as an exceptional role model for co-workers and volunteers alike. John has been a key leader in Water Action Volunteers trainings and hands-on-stream monitoring experiences in cooperation with other coordinators and local partners. He has monitored, analyzed, and presented his findings in phosphorus sampling from 14 different sites. Those who have worked closely with him have noted his ability to inspire and support volunteer monitors.  Through grant writing, partner collaboration, and project development, John is paving the path for more informed local decision making in his local communities.

Jaime Weigel

For the past three years, Ms Weigel has introduced the wonders of stream biology to 7th graders at Whitewater Middle School, in Whitewater, WI.  Ms. Weigel successfully secure funding to purchase stream monitoring equipment and transportation to a local monitoring site. For the past three years, Ms. Weigel has organized field trips to study stream health at Bluff Creek. During these field trips, seventh graders test the water by measuring dissolved oxygen, stream temperature and water clarity. Students also examine macroinvertebrates to calculate a biological health index score. These field studies have been collaborative affairs bringing together the Whitewater MS seventh grade science teachers and facilitators with the Kettle Moraine Land Trust, the Rock River Coalition, and volunteers with the WDNR State Natural Areas. Over 200 students have been involved in these field studies.

Southern Brown Conservation Club

Since 1986, the Southern Brown Conservation Club (SBCC) has proudly existed as an active chapter of the Izaak Walton League of America (IWLA), passionately seeking to protect the local natural resources. They annually host spring stream clean-up projects and are passionate about educating youth on watersheds and water quality issues.  Since 2016, members have been involved in developing the IWLA’s National Clean Water Challenge, striving to monitor 100,000 streams nationwide by 2022 and improving water quality across the country. In the spring of 2017, the SBCC collaborated with Water Action Volunteers Stream Monitoring Program to host a water quality training which drew participants not only from the SBCC, but also from a nearby environmental engineering firm, students from the UW-Green Bay, and from the community.   As a result SBCC started monitoring three sites for baseline data and phosphorus.

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