Illinois Lake Management Association holds 35th conference at University

The 35th-annual Illinois Lakes Management Association-Lakes Conference will take place from March 12-14 at 2020 at the I Hotel and Conference Center. 

There will be technical sessions, workshops and speakers presenting about various lake management concerns.

Technical sessions will explore topics in relation to the keynote address and will be held March 12-13. The two workshops will focus on Aquatic Invasive Species Identification and other subjects March 13-14.

This year is the first time since 1991 that the event has been held in Champaign-Urbana.

Doug Blodgett, the director of River Conservation for the Illinois Chapter of the Nature Conservatory, will be the keynote speaker for the event, and he will be presenting a panel to discuss “The Nature Conservancy’s Emiquon Project: Restoring Functional Floodplain for Nature and People.

“I have participated in several ILMA conferences in the past and have always found them enlightening as well as enjoyable,” Blodgett said in an email. “When I was requested to present at this year’s meeting, I saw it as an excellent opportunity to share some of the results, including a few lessons learned, from our work restoring and managing functional floodplain wetlands.”

Blodgett’s said his chosen topic is incredibly important for animal and human species alike.

“Functional floodplain wetlands provide a variety of benefits for nature and people, including improving water quality and quantity, reducing unnatural flooding, providing important habitats for fish and wildlife, helping mitigate and adapt to global climate change and providing opportunities for education, recreation and compatible economic development,” Blodgett said. “It is critically important to restore, protect and manage these and other wetlands.”

Blodgett said he has high hopes for both experienced researchers and student attendees who are newer to conservation studies, the address will “broaden their thinking, expose them to new and better tools for managing their water resources and provide motivation.”

The tentative schedule along with the registration is available on the website for further inquiries.

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