The 2nd Annual Fox-Wolf Watershed Celebration was held Tuesday, March 7 in Green Lake. Over 60 people gathered to honor five individuals and organizations working to protect, restore and sustain the water resources of the Fox River Basin.
The Watershed Heroes Impact Awards, presented by the Fox-Wolf Watershed Alliance, recognizes individuals and organizations who have lived or worked within the Fox-Wolf Watershed Communities and have excelled in any one of the following area:
- Providing leadership in working towards sustainable development of our economies and resources.
- Inspiring the work of others, including our youth, to foster the health of the Fox-Wolf watershed’s communities, economies, and cultures.
- Extraordinary focus on improving agriculture land use decisions to restore and protect our watershed.
- Utilizing innovative strategies or outstanding effort to achieve significant results in furthering sustainable development within the watershed.
- Demonstrating a lasting commitment to the health and management of our watershed resources.
Congratulations to our 2017 Watershed Heroes!
City of Appleton Stormwater Utility
The City of Appleton was one of the first cities in Wisconsin to establish a stormwater utility and its stormwater
management program continues to be progressive. The Appleton Stormwater Utility has created more than 30 regional stormwater management facilities with ponds, upland buffers and bioswales to manage water quantity and improve water quality. By choosing native vegetation and engineering these systems to achieve multiple benefits, the City
improves water quality, recharges groundwater aquifers, and creates wildlife habitat and outdoor spaces for residents to enjoy.
Jon Gumtow has been actively involved in working towards the betterment of our water resources through
collaborative efforts with local schools and municipalities, inspiring students by connecting them to our local lakes and rivers, and seeking improvements to wildlife habitat. His love for sharing his passion for the outdoors and the environment with children is contagious. He is described as “An amazing man with a passion and vision for engaging youth in real world environmental projects right here in the Fox Valley.”
Poygan Sportsmen’s Club
The Poygan Sportsmen’s Club has shown, through many years of work, their commitment to the improvement of the waterways and to protecting fragile ecosystems within Lake Poygan, Lake Winneconne, and the Lower Wolf River. Their work includes: restored woody habitat, installed fish sticks and fish reefs, duck houses, several shoreline protection projects, carp barrier, restored and planted bulrush, a riprap project in Boom Bay, invasive species removal and more. Most recently, the Club contributed to advance a break-wall construction project on Lake Poygan that will protect 400 acres of critical habitat when complete.
Former Congressman Ribble’s Save the Bay initiative served as a catalyst to bring water quality to the forefront of
conversation throughout the basin. Recognizing the importance of water to our economy, health and way of life, Mr. Ribble brought together academia, science, industry, government, nonprofit and the agricultural community to strategize and discuss potential solutions and associated roadblocks to reducing harmful substances, including phosphorus and sediment from entering the Bay of Green Bay. Thanks to Mr. Ribble’s effort, the Save the Bay initiative will
continues to advance under Congressmen Gallagher.
Demonstration Farm Network
The Demonstration Farm Network is exploring conservation practices to determine which practices not only have a water quality benefit but will also have a positive or net zero economic impact on the farm, research needed to ensure a future of sustainable conservation efforts. The field days and
other outreach efforts that the Demonstration Farms are leading or supporting benefit the producers that attend as well as conservation professionals, elected officials and others looking to support or understand a holistic approach to watershed management.