Time to Cast Your Ballot for the 2021-22 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 June 3, 2021. 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 September 1, 2021.
2021 Nominee Statements
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President: 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 has been with Seminole County for over 20 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 integrated management plans and restoration projects throughout Seminole County. She is a member of various scientific organizations/associations and was the first female president for the Florida Association of Benthologists. Gloria has been a FLMS member since 2001.
Vice President: Eesa Ali
Eesa Ali has been performing audits on surface water discharges throughout Florida for over 15 years. He has been trained by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) in ambient water sampling and water quality evaluations, including being certified in Habitat Assessments (HA), Stream Condition Index (SCI) & Lake Vegetative Index (LVI). Other areas of expertise include, National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Compliance Enforcement Inspections (NPDES CEI), Planning and Monitoring associated with Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs), Basin Management Action Plans (BMAPs), wetland delineations, Integrated Pest Management (IPM), and Environmental Emergency Response. Eesa also instructs on water quality sampling technique, instrument calibration, data verification and quality assurance & quality control (QA/QC). Eesa has been a FLMS member since 2018 and was the technical wizard behind FLMS first-ever virtual symposium! (Maryann put that part in!)
Secretary: Rob Burnes
Rob Burnes is an Environmental Program Manager with Pinellas County’s Environmental Management Division. His work has focused on habitat restoration, water quality improvement projects and water quality analysis. Rob has been with Pinellas County since 2010 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. He hass been a FLMS member since 2010 and has served FLMS President, Vice President, Director and has been the Program Chair for the past three years.
Treasurer: Dan Schmutz
Dan Schmutz is a Vice President and Chief Environmental Scientist for Greenman-Pedersen, Inc. (GPI), a 1,200-person multidisciplinary consulting firm. He holds a Master’s degree in Zoology from the University of South Florida. He has over 20 years of professional experience focused on the development and application of ecological and hydrological field assessments, GIS analyses, and appropriate statistical techniques for addressing questions of interest to water supply managers. Dan has been a member of FLMS since 2014 and has served as a Director since 2017. He has taught several FLMS workshops on Introduction to Statistical Analysis and Machine Learning in R.
Director: Dana Stephens, Ph.D
Dana Stephens is the Director of the Mattie M. Kelly Environmental Institute and Chair of the Mathematics and Natural Science Departments at Northwest Florida State College. In these roles, Dana completes research examining temporal and spatial shifts in aquatic ecosystems and relationships with natural and anthropogenic drivers. She also supports faculty and student success, teaches numerous courses, and engages with the community. Dana received a Ph.D. and M.S. degrees from the University of Florida in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences within the School of Forest Resources and Conservation and a B.S. in Biology Conservation and Zoology at University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has been a FLMS member since 2007 and has served terms on both the FLMS and NALMS boards since that time.
Director: Patrick Goodwin
Patrick Goodwin 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. Patrick is currently also serving as NALMS Regions 4 Director.
Director: Tiffany Trent
Tiffany Trent is an environmental scientist with the St Johns River Water Management District since 2010. Her main areas of focus include submerged aquatic vegetation, water chemistry, phytoplankton, and harmful algal blooms in the lower St Johns River Basin. Previously she worked as a biologist for the USFWS at the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge where she was involved with the Florida Apple Snail, water chemistry, and prescribed burning. Tiffany earned her BS in marine biology at the University of West Florida in 2005, and her MS in coastal zone management at Nova Southeastern University in 2010. She has been a FLMS member since 2015 and currently edits the Society’s newsletter. Tiffany’s hobbies include social activism, backpacking, and eating good food!
Ernesto Lasso de la Vega, Ed.D.
Stephen “Monty” Montgomery
Jason Danaher, Ph.D.
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Continuing Board Members:
Past President: Serge Thomas, Ph.D.
Serge Thomas is an Associate Professor from the Water School under the Department of Ecological and Environmental Studies at Florida Gulf Coast University. He especially studies what factors of natural/human origins and especially nutrients, trigger (harmful) algae blooms in various inland/nearshore shallow ecosystems. Such systems vary from fresh to saltwater manmade and natural still and moving water bodies as well as wetlands. Understanding what controls algae growth allows him to rehabilitate hydrosystems, use algae and associated plants to remove water nutrients in engineered manmade shallow impoundments (such as treatment wetlands and stormwater ponds) and to better predict (harmful) algae blooms. He mainly studies the (photo)physiology of microscopic floating (phytoplankton) and attached algae (periphyton). He also looks at sediment internal loading in water bodies and how sediment accumulates and is advected. Finally, besides the use of Unmanned Aircraft Vehicles (drones) to better track eutrophication, his research includes Environmental Education to bring awareness to the general public and schools about eutrophicated water issues and subsequent Best Management Practices that should ensue to ensure sustainable good water quality for the future. Serge is a true believer of community engaged and participatory research as means to improving water quality.