Congratulations to Ms. Rebecca Kenyon-Sisler - Carl S. Weber Award Nominee

Last Updated on Jan 23, 2014 at 2:21pm |

The Carl S. Weber Award

One person can make a difference!

Dr. Carl S. Weber was one of the founding MWMC Board members, representing the academic community. Through this award, we celebrate Carl’s life and work by acknowledging others who share his generous spirit, his commitment to Maryland’s waters, his vision for collaboration, and his leadership in advancing monitoring and assessment. Beginning in 2007, the Award has been presented annually to an individual involved in water monitoring in Maryland who exhibits the spirit, vision and leadership so exemplified by Carl.
 
 
Mrs. Rebecca Kenyon-Sisler, Northern Garrett High School’s Advanced Placement Environmental Science Teacher, was the key person behind the Cove Run Brook Trout Restoration Project - an inspirational story of a community working together to protect and enhance a trout stream for our present and future generations. Rebecca collaborated with the Youghiogheny River Watershed Association and the Youghiogheny Chapter of Trout Unlimited to obtain two Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ Aquatic Resources Education (ARE) Grants. The ARE Grant program fully funded the budget request and this program has enabled Northern Garrett High School’s Environmental Science students the unique opportunity to participate in an action watershed restoration project that provided a hands-on learning and community service experience. Riparian restoration sites were established on the three farms in the headwaters of the Cove Run watershed in late winter 2012.  Two of the restoration sites required the installation of fencing to create a buffer on both sides of the stream.  New partnerships were formed with Habitat Forever, LLC and the United States Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, as they planned and installed the riparian fencing in early spring 2012.  As soon as the fencing was completed, the Environmental Science class students planted hundreds of native trees and seedlings at each of the sites.  The students did an amazing job of getting 160 trees and seedlings planted on their first day! Invasive plant species removal such as multiflora rose and Japanese barberry was conducted by the students to help with the establishment of the planted trees and shrubs. The students have visited the sites several times during the past two years to collect water quality data as well as to conduct stream habitat and bio-assessments to monitor the health of the stream in the restoration sites.  Water quality parameters such as temperature, turbidity, pH, dissolved oxygen, and nutrients are monitored by the students. While conducting the pre-restoration stream habitat and bio-assessment, the students documented an aquatic invertebrate community that was basically tolerant to pollution. However, just after one year of the establishment of the vegetated riparian zone – pollution sensitive organisms such as caddisflies, mayflies, and stoneflies were showing up in the samples. The future of Cove Run is looking bright thanks to the work of Mrs. Kenyon-Sisler and her students!
 
From Clark Howells, Selection Committee Member:

The nominees for this year’s award were Rebecca Kenyon-Sisler, Northern Garrett High School, David Flores, Blue Water Baltimore, The Savage River Watershed Association’s Marcellus Shale Water Monitoring Team and Paul Kayzak, Maryland DNR.
 
This year’s winner was Mr. Paul Kayzak from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.  Paul is a senior scientist at Maryland DNR, a part-time instructor for Johns Hopkins University and has been a tireless champion of the Maryland Biological Stream Survey, Highlands Action Program, and Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund monitoring.  As a volunteer, Paul works with high school youth as Advisor for a co-ed Boy Scout Venturing Crew.  Since 2000, the group has been arguably the most environmentally active youth group in the US, planting many thousands of trees, assisting DNR with monitoring activities, and doing thousands of hours of public outreach.
 
We would like to congratulate all of the nominees submitted for consideration this year for their contributions to preserve and protect Maryland’s water resources.  It is truly inspiring to read about all of the great work taking place in Maryland and to have an opportunity to honor those who have volunteered their time and energy towards increasing watershed awareness, advocacy and stewardship of the waters of Maryland. 
 
Also, please note that nominees may be re-nominated for next year’s 2014 Carl Weber Award. 
 
Thank you once again for all of your time and efforts.
 
Thanks,
 
Clark Howells
Carl Weber Award Selection Committee Chair