Highland Lake Association announces changes in the Executive Committee:

posted Mar 15, 2020, 8:03 AM by Joseph Bickard   [ updated Mar 15, 2020, 9:27 AM ]

At the beginning of 2020.  Rosie Hartzler decided to step down from President to Vice President. Dennis Brown has accepted the role of President of the HLA. Kevin McElearney will assume the role of Treasurer, and Joe Bickard will continue as Secretary for the HLA. The newly energized group looks forward to working with everyone in the watershed in our collaborative efforts to protect this jewel of a lake. 


Who is Dennis Brown? 

Dennis has lived on the lake since 2008, and enjoys fishing, sailing and kayaking on the lake.  He has served as the Treasurer of the HLA for the past 2 and ½ year.  Almost singlehandedly he oversaw the development and organization of the Highland Lake Leadership Team (HLLT), an organization that includes representatives from the Towns of Windham and Falmouth, the Highland Lake Association, Department of Environmental Protection, and Cumberland County Soil and Water Conservation District.  In his role as Chair of the HLLT he has instituted the committee structure in an ongoing effort to protect Highland Lake. 


Some examples of how this structure have benefitted the watershed include:  development of ordinances that impose stricter phosphorus allowances within the HL watershed; securing  necessary funding through a collaborative effort including the Towns of Windham and Falmouth, the DEP and CCSWCD to develop the Watershed Management Plan, planning for and implementing a Public Forum.


Who is Kevin McElearney?

Kevin joins the leadership team with a great deal of professional experience both in his work life and as president of the Pride Farm Road Association.  He brings fresh ideas on processes and protocol as well as his wide ranging skills in the use of technology.  The HLA has already benefited from his expertise in his role on the Grant Implementation Committee. 


Acknowledging Kim White

Kim has been the Vice President of the HLA and has not sought the limelight;  however, her work has nevertheless been remarkable.   She has been and continues to serve as the Vice Chair of the Highland Lake Leadership Team (HLLT), and has her fingerprints on a number of major HLA efforts, not the least which has been the Watershed Survey and Watershed Management Plan.  Thank you Kim for all you have done and continue to do.


Thanks to Rosie Hartzler

Rosie has been the President of the HLA for the past two and a half years and has invested  countless hours in leading the Highland Lake Association to implementing new strategies and organizing the watershed community in a collaborative effort to preserve and protect Highland Lake.  Rosie has demonstrated amazing tenacity in this work, and as Vice Presidents, will continue to work as a  passionate advocate for preserving water quality on Highland Lake.


Vision for the HLA – Dennis Brown


Where are we, as a lake community headed?  Well, because of the overall direction of the past two years, we don’t need to make any significant changes.  We have to continue:

  • Addressing the never ending challenge of educating the residents within the lake watershed on their personal impact to the lake.  Obviously we still have a long way to go, and there’s the residents within the watershed without lake access that we still need to reach because of the ease with which phosphorus from anywhere within the watershed can impact the lake.
  • Continue the great progress in stormwater ordinance we’ve made in both Windham and Falmouth, though there is always room for improvement here as well.
  • Raise necessary funds for lake water quality studies as well as applying for grants for the site remediations.
  • Develop final draft of the Watershed Management Plan (WMP), and apply for 319 funding to be applied toward remediation of identified erosion sites.  (The timing for this is as follows:  Complete draft of the WMP- March, 2020;  Adoption of the WMP by the HLLT and Towns of Windham and Falmouth - Spring, 2020;   DEP approves draft of WMP Spring,  2020;  Application  for 319 funding beginning in April, 2020;    Anticipated 319 funding awarded to CCSWCD / HLLT (overall administration of the WMP) Summer, 2021. 
  • Validating the first hypothesis of the alewife/food chain impact causing the bloom and exploring the possible steps to mitigate those causes. 
  • Validating the second hypothesis, on whether there is phosphorus recycling from the bottom sediments, will necessitate  even greater efforts to reduce phosphorus sources to the lake. 
  • Continue building on the great working relationships and level of  respect we’ve earned in the collaborative partnerships with the leaders in the Towns of Windham and Falmouth.
  • Planning for a Public Forum in Spring, 2020 with the goal of informing the public regarding the most updated water quality information, and what steps the community can do in the ongoing work of preserving and protecting Highland Lake.