Paul Smith’s College Adirondack Watershed Institute (AWI) announced that Bill Brosseau has joined their team as its new Stewardship Program Director. This news comes as AWI prepares for this year’s boat inspection and decontamination program to help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species in area waterways.
Starting on Memorial Day weekend, AWI stewards will offer free inspections and boat washing at more than 60 boat launches and roadside locations across the Adirondack region. Stewards educate boaters, anglers, and other visitors about aquatic invasive species. The regional program relies on the boating public to adopt the Clean, Drain, Dry standard required by New York State’s regulation to stop the spread of aquatic invasive species.
AWI hires between 100-130 seasonal staff annually to implement the program. Brosseau joined AWI in March to oversee this flagship program, which is the largest aquatic invasive species spread prevention effort in New York State.
“Bill brings to AWI a proven track record of building collaborative partnerships, protecting natural resources, and successfully managing large groups of staff and volunteers,” said Dan Kelting, AWI’s Executive Director. “He demonstrates a strong land and water stewardship ethic that will help AWI expand its work and strengthen its impact on clean water.”
Before joining AWI, Brosseau was the Conservation Director with EarthCorps, a conservation corps focused on ecological restoration in the Pacific Northwest. He has also held varied leadership roles with the Adirondack Mountain Club.
“I have a deep connection and long history with the Adirondacks,” says Brosseau. “I’m excited to join the team at AWI and contribute to the long term protection of its lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams.”
AWI’s spread prevention network is carefully designed to place stewards at popular and high risk launches and along travel corridors across northern New York. Stewards operate at some of the busiest launches in the region including Lake Placid, Great Sacandaga, and Lake Champlain. Additionally, stewards safeguard smaller and more remote waterbodies like those found in the St. Regis Canoe Area where invasive species introduction is high because organisms can easily spread from lake to lake.
The boat inspection and decontamination stations are cooperatively funded by New York State’s Environmental Protection Fund, USEPA-Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, Lake Champlain Basin Program, numerous Lake Associations, private foundations, and municipalities.
Information about inspection and decontamination station locations, aquatic invasive species ecology, and steps the public can take to maintain the quality of New York’s waterways is at adkcleanboats.org.
Detailed 2021 reports for each individual location can also be found on AWI’s website, adkwatershed.org.
“The opportunity to consistently share the Clean, Drain, Dry message with the boating public is having a positive impact on our waters, and we look forward to another successful season,” says Kelting.
The mission of the Paul Smith’s College Adirondack Watershed Institute is to protect clean water, conserve habitat and support the health and well-being of the people in the Adirondacks through science, collaboration, and real-world experiences for students.