LCBP Resource Room Staff Awarded
Each year, more than 25,000 guests at ECHO, Leahy Center for Lake Champlain visit the LCBP’s Resource Room on the second floor to learn more about lake and watershed issues. And each year since 2003, LCBP staffers Laura Hollowell, Stephanie Larkin, and Cynthia Norman have informed, educated, and guided these visitors, answering all manner of questions and providing accurate, up-to-date information on everything from algae to zebra mussels. In recognition of these efforts, the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission’s (NEIWPCC) presented its Annual Achievement Award to the team in October.
The award reads:
Laura Hollowell, Stephanie Larkin and Cynthia Norman are outstanding representatives of the Lake Champlain Basin Program (10+ years each) and NEIWPCC, now having welcomed and assisted more than one-third of a million visitors into the LCBP Resource Room at ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center in Burlington Vermont since May 2003. This team has been working 7 days a week, 362 days per year (that’s right, all but 3 days/yr) including more than 1375 WEEKEND Days!
These dynamic ladies interpret complicated scientific information for the public, wade through challenging political and regulatory environmental issues/perspectives from New York, Vermont and Quebec, assist educators with resource support for student curricula, complete public programs on science and cultural heritage issues, and conduct daily inquiry based programs. They serve as liaisons with over 100 organizations, sharing resources, listening to concerns, and encouraging visitors to volunteer or to take positive action steps on behalf of the Lake.
One of the coolest aspects of this team is the diversity of their skill set. Having backgrounds in teaching and salt water outreach, natural history interpretation, biological library collections, homeschooling, and communications, it’s amazing to see them play to their team’s strength. They periodically rotate for a day outside of the Resource Room to assist with programming at schools, public events, or student field days which often involve more than 200 students each day. As outdoor recreation enthusiasts, Laura, Cynthia and Steph are unequivocally excited when visitors ask for cool places to explore, whether they are interested in geology, cycling, invertebrates, or mountains. There’s always a water connection thrown into the conversation just for fun. Their intellect, leadership and sense of FUN, help us extend our outreach well beyond the office walls and get people excited about Lake Champlain’s ecosystem!
NEIWPCC presents the award each year at its annual all-staff meeting, where staff in programs from around the region gather to attend training sessions and share their work. The award recognizes and rewards employees who have demonstrated their ability to collaborate with others, who promote innovative ideas or approaches, and who have a proven ability for outstanding achievements, leadership, integrity, team building, initiative, and productivity.
Since 1992, the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC) has served as the primary program administrator of LCBP at the request of the LCBP’s Steering Committee, and administers the program’s personnel and finances. NEIWPCC is a congressionally authorized not-for-profit interstate organization whose membership includes all six New England states and New York State and whose mission is to help its member states to realize their individual and collective clean water program goals.