Time to Cast Your Ballot for the 2016-17 Board of Directors!

Below are the nominee statements for this year’s elections.  When you are ready to cast your ballot, click the ballot link.  You may select one person for each officer position and up to four Directors. You may also write in a candidate. (Coincidentally there are the same number of nominees as openings for you to vote on.)

Nominations for the Society’s Officers and Directors are accepted by the Nominating Committee up to 90 days prior to the annual business meeting. This year’s nominations were due to the Board by March 11, 2016.  Ballots are sent out to the membership 60 days prior with votes counted 15 days prior to the meeting. The election announcement is made at the annual meeting. Email the Nominating Committee to be considered for a Board Member position.  Officers serve one year terms.  Directors serve two year terms.

New officers and directors begin their terms at the annual business meeting at noon on June 8, 2016.

2016 Nominee Statements
Cast Your Ballot Here

President: Ron Hart

Ron has been the Water Resource Program Director for the Lake County Water Authority since 1997. His responsibilities include the operation and maintenance of the six LCWA water control structures; administration of water resources staff; oversight of the Nutrient Reduction Facility and multi-million dollar dredging projects in Lake County. He is currently working on the restoration of flows in the Green Swamp and modification of dams on the Palatlakaha River system.  Ron has a B.A. in Limnology from the University of Central Florida and has been a member of the Florida Lake Management Society since 1994. He has over 19 years of progressive environmental management experience including fifteen years of senior level management experience at two regional governmental agencies. Ron’s earlier experience creating and implementing a complete stormwater program was easily transferred to the creation of the LCWA’s stormwater retrofit grant program which has resulted in removal of over 11,00lbs of TP from Lake County’s waterways.

Vice President: Sergio Duarte

Sergio has over twenty years of experience in lakes and fisheries management, environmental studies, extension service, aquaculture production & consulting, and laboratory work on lake water, aquatic diseases and fish pathogen inspections. Sergio received his B.S. in Biology from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Colombia S.A. and two M.S. from Auburn University on Fisheries and Allied Aquaculture and Ag. Economics.  Sergio is currently the Water Resources Project Manager for the Lake County Water Authority (LCWA).  Prior to coming to the LCWA, Sergio worked ten years as a Senior Environmental Specialist with the Orange County Environmental Protection Division, and seven years as the Lakes Management Coordinator for the City of Maitland.  Sergio has been involved over the years in the supervision of stormwater / lake restoration projects, waterway aquatic plant removals/dredging projects, aquatic plant control programs, wetland restorations, NPDES compliance and training, lake conservation awareness programs and environmental education.  Sergio participated in the organization of the Central Chapter of FLMS and has been a member of FLMS for almost 16 years. He has served over the past years as a Secretary, Director and as the current President of the Central Chapter. Sergio is interested in renovating and maintaining the FLMS as great place to exchange professional work and networking, as well as a place to achieve overall professional growth.

Secretary: Shannon Carter Wetzel

Shannon has been a member of FLMS for over 19 years. She has served as President, Secretary and board member in the past and has been active in the Central Florida chapter. Shannon is a Principal Environmental Scientist for Seminole County Public Works Department, Watershed Management Division. She is responsible for the County’s surface water monitoring and NPDES compliance programs. Prior to coming to Seminole County, Shannon worked with the South Florida Water Management District where she was involved in the environmental resource permitting regulatory program, including wetland delineations, mitigation assessments and permit compliance. She received her B.S. in Limnology from the University of Central Florida and her M.S. in Aquatic Biology from the University of Alabama. Shannon has been working on and in Florida waters and wetlands for over 21 years and is very excited about the future of FLMS and hopes to continue serving the society.

Treasurer: Lance Lumbard

Lance has twenty years of water resources and business management experience that includes successful start-up of several multi-million-dollar private and public operations, nine years with local government, and more than four years with the consulting firm AMEC Fowler Wheeler. He received a bachelor’s degree in Biological Science from Florida State University in 1994, a master’s degree in Fisheries Science from Louisiana State University in 1997 and his MBA in 2008 from the University of Central Florida. Lance has worldwide experience with design, construction, and operation of lake restoration and navigation projects, stormwater retrofit projects, water treatment and filtration systems, fisheries management programs, aquatic animal life-support systems, and other water resources projects. He directly managed over 60 water resource related projects for the Lake County Water Authority, including the $7.3 million Nutrient Reduction Facility project. Lance is currently a Senior Scientist with AMEC Fowler Wheeler where he provides water resources services to public and private clients ranging from comprehensive lake and watershed management plans in support of TMDL and NPDES requirements to full-scale project planning, design, permitting, and implementation. He is a current FLMS board member and also serves on the Lakes Education and Action Drive board for the Winter Haven Chain of Lakes. Lance has been an active member of FLMS for Eleven years and believes that good science, effective policy, efficient spending, and community outreach and involvement are the keys to restoring and protecting Florida’s water resources.

Director: Robert Burnes

Rob Burnes is Senior Environmental Specialist with Pinellas County’s Watershed Management Section.  His work has focused on habitat restoration and water quality improvement projects and water quality analysis. Rob has been with Pinellas County for seven years and previously worked for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Rob attended the University of Florida where he earned a B.S. in Wildlife Conservation and Ecology and a M.S. in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences.

Director: Gloria Eby

Gloria Eby is an aquatic biologist who received both her Bachelor and Masters Science degree in Biology from the University of Central Florida.  She is a member of various scientific organizations/associations and was the first female president for the Florida Association of Benthologists.  She has been with Seminole County’s Watershed Management Division for 16 years and currently is a Principal Environmental Scientist.  Her programs include Lake Management Program Manager and Mosquito Control Program Director.  She has developed and implemented Seminole County’s extensive biological monitoring program which includes lake assessments, chemical/biological analysis, and develops/implements restoration projects throughout unincorporated Seminole County.

Director:  Ernesto Lasso de la Vega

Ernesto has been working at the Lee County Hyacinth Control District in Fort Myers, Florida since 1991 as a biologist controlling aquatic weeds. He is also the coordinator of the Pond Watch Program, a volunteer monitoring program that educates homeowners about ways to minimize aquatic weed problems. He earned a Master degree from Auburn University (1988) and a Doctorate degree from University of Central Florida (2004). He has been teaching environmental science, biology and microbiology at local universities in South West Florida for the last 21 years to the present.  He was a former Director of FLMS in the years 1994-1997, 1999-2000; and looks forward to returning back to the Board of this wonderful organization.

Director: Curtis Porterfield

Curtis has 12 years of experience directly relating to freshwater resource monitoring, freshwater data analyses (chemical and biological), stormwater management, and freshwater policy. He received his B.S. in Environmental Science and Policy from the University of South Florida in 2004. Post graduation, Curtis was employed by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to help oversee water quality monitoring in lakes, rivers, small streams, and groundwater wells throughout the 16 counties of the Southwest District. In 2007, he became Polk County’s Lakes Biologist and oversaw water quality data analyses, NPDES/TMDL compliance activities, and general stormwater system management practices. Since 2013, Curtis has been the Lakes & Stormwater Manager for the City of Lakeland. He now focuses on implementing lake water quality restoration projects, overseeing the stormwater utility, and directing stormwater retrofit projects. Curtis is an APWA Certified Stormwater Manager and a NALMS Certified Lakes Manager. His expertise are in stormwater system management, lake improvement projects, NPDES and TMDL regulations, and environmental educational outreach.

Cast Your Ballot Here

Continuing Board Members:

Director: Patrick Goodwin

Patrick holds a B.S. in Biology from the University of North Florida with a focus in Limnology. Patrick has been a FLMS member since 2012 and started his research carrier in freshwater at UNF Environmental Center. Here he developed a long-term monitoring program for 42 of UNF Lakes and worked closely with reclaimed wastewater’s interactions back into the environment. Patrick’s interest in freshwater has now led him to another research position with Vertex Water Features where he looks at aeration design and its effect on lake ecology. You can most likely find Patrick in his natural habitat fishing, camping, surfing, and or just enjoying the outdoors.

Director: Jim Griffin

Jim is a past vice president and president of FLMS, long time board member and a retired University of South Florida associate in research and a retired naval flight officer. He has been active as an environmental scientist studying lakes and wetland systems for 20 years, serving as the Hillsborough County Lakes Manager, a senior environmental scientist with the Southwest Florida Water Management District and teaching and conducting research at USF. Presently he volunteers with his church and community and enjoys living on a lake and traveling.

Director: April Verpoorten

Director: Marissa Williams

Marissa is the Natural Resources Officer for the City of Casselberry.  She received her Bachelors in Environmental Studies from Rollins College and subsequently worked for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Invasive Plant Management Section as a Regional Biologist permitting shoreline alteration activities in western Orange County and managing hydrilla in the Butler Chain of Lakes.  Prior to her employment with Casselberry, Marissa worked 7 years as the City of Maitland’s Stormwater and Lakes Management Coordinator, supervising the Division’s operations and programs.  Her varied experience includes aquatic vegetation management, NPDES permitting, surface water quality, environmental enforcement, dock and wetland permitting,  advisory board coordination, environmental education, and project management in stormwater retrofit construction and drainage improvements.  For 10 years, Marissa has also been a volunteer Sampling Coordinator and Project Manager with the Cambrian Foundation, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to research, education, preservation, and exploration of the aquatic realm.