Several awards are given out at the NYSFOLA annual conference. 

Media Award

This award seeks to recognize outstanding journalism that has promoted lake stewardship and has brought attention to issues and potential problems involving New York State lakes or their watersheds, including but not limited to stories featuring:

  • Harmful algal blooms
  • Impacts of development on water quality
  • Dam Safety
  • Aquatic Invasive Species
  • Watershed management and non-point pollution
  • Boating and boating safety
  • Government Issues

For additional information, including how to apply for this award, please contact Jan Shields, chairman of the Media Committee, at or NYSFOLA Manager Nancy Mueller at 

Newsletter Awards

Enter your Association’s publication in this year’s NYSOFLA conference newsletter contest  

Don’t forget to bring copies of your lake association’s most recent newsletter(s) to the annual conference. The Media Team will be on hand to award first and second place prizes for outstanding publications in the following categories:  small, medium and large-sized lake associations. Here’s the criteria the judges will be using in making their selections:  

  • Overall appearance (layout is easy to read & visually attractive)
  • Use of color in text (one or four color)
  • Contains photographs or graphics (B/W or full color)
  • Publication information (name of editor, co-editor, issue number or date, etc.)
  • President’s message or greeting
  • Committee reports (summaries of what's going on within committees/action being taken)
  • Articles or features by individual contributors (can include reports by officers)
  • Newsletter includes the following elements:  masthead; mission statement; table of contents; list of officers; and calendar of events

When you arrive at the White Eagle Conference Appley Center, leave a copy (or copies) of your association’s publication at the conference registration table and indicate that you’d like to enter it in the newsletter contest. Judging will take place Saturday afternoon. If you are unable to attend the conference, lake associations can still participate by forwarding copies of their publications to the NYSFOLA office. Please write Newsletter Contest Entry on your envelope. Thanks!

Please note: These guidelines are to be used for the purposes of this contest only. While full color publications are desirable, content will nearly always trumps fancy bells & whistles. Use of color will not be the determining factor in selecting a winner. The overall aim is to produce a newsletter that is informative, interesting and educational, something that members will peruse at the very least and read in its entirety at best. If it contains pertinent news about the lake and its residents, it most likely will end up being held onto until the next issue is published. Advertising to offset the cost of newsletter production and mailing will not be a selection factor however it should not be obtrusive or detract from the publication's readability.

Lake Steward Award

The Lake Steward Award is presented each year to a lake association volunteer who has gone above and beyond the call of duty for his/her lake association.  Nominations can be sent to the NYSFOLA office throughout the year.  Awards are presented at the Annual Conference banquet. 

Submit a description of the nominee's contributions to Nancy Mueller, Manager, NYS FOLA, PO Box 84, LaFayette, NY 10384 or via email at no later than March 31st. 

Lake Tear of the Clouds Award

The Lake Tear of the Clouds Award is NYSFOLA’s highest honor.  This award, named for the “highest” lake in the state, is awarded when appropriate (and often without prior notification) to a person who has shown the highest dedication to lakes and watersheds, assisted NYSFOLA in its mission and produced exceptional performance in his or her field of endeavor. 


1996 - NYS Governor George Pataki

1997 - Lyle S. Raymond, Cornell Cooperative Extension at Cornell University

1998 - U.S. Congressman Sherwood Boehlert

1999 - Steve LaMere, Adirondack Ecologists

2000 - Donald Keppel, Findley Lake Association, NYSFOLA Treasurer

2001 - Scott Kishbaugh, NYS DEC Division of Water

2002 - Mary Arthur Beebe, Lake George Association

2003 - U.S. Congressman James Walsh

2004 - Dean Long, NYSFOLA Board of Directors and Dr. Willard Harman, SUNY Oneonta Biological Field Station

2005 - Robert Johnson, Cornell University

2006 - Robert D. Hennigan, Professor Emeritus, SUNY ESF

2007 - Dr. Steven W. Effler, Upstate Freshwater Institute

2008 - Dr. Bruce Gilman, Community College of the Finger Lakes

2009 - David Wright, Esq. - NYSFOLA General Counsel

2010 - Scott Kishbaugh, NYS DEC Division of Water

2011 - Bob Rosati, Melody Lake Association, NYSFOLA BOD

2012 - Nancy Mueller, NYSFOLA Manager & Assistant CSLAP Coordinator

2013 - Paul Lord, Otsego Lake Association, SUNY Oneonta

2014 - Dr. Jay Bloomfield, NYS DEC Division of Water

2015 - Dr. Gregory Boyer, SUNY College of Environmental Science & Forestry

2016 - MaryGail Perkins, Upstate Freshwater Institute

Lake News OCT 17th

DEC Issues 2017 Finger Lakes Water Quality Report

The NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Finger Lakes Watershed Hub has released its 2017 Finger Lakes Water Quality Report: Summary of Historic Finger Lakes Data and the 2017 Citizens Statewide Lake Assessment Program

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News from U.S. EPA APR 22nd

NOTICE: Update Your EPA News RSS Feed

US EPA has changed how it issues news feeds...

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