2002 Water Awards Presented to Iowans for Their Contributions

May 5th, 2002

AMES, Iowa - The Iowa State Water Resources Research Institute (ISWRRI) presented awards to four Iowans and one organization for their contributions in understanding and conserving water resources during 2001. The second annual awards were presented in March at the Agriculture and the Environment conference held on the Iowa State University campus.

James Baker, Iowa State agricultural and biosystems engineering professor, was named the 2002 Outstanding Water Resources Researcher. He was recognized for his contributions to improve nitrogen and pesticide management in Iowa using phased timing of fertilizer application. His recent work focused on integrating field practices to improve water quality. This work will be instrumental in developing practices to solve nonpoint source pollution, develop wetlands and manage nitrogen and phosphorus.

Robert Bringolf, a graduate student in animal ecology at Iowa State was selected as the Outstanding Water Resources Graduate Student. Bringolf's award was based on his strong academic performance and research expertise displayed while studying environmental estrogens in aquatic systems.

Erwin Klaas, Ames, received the Outstanding Water Resources Leader Award. Klaas' award recognized his efforts to convince Ames community leaders to support the preservation of Hallett's Quarry and its watershed as a supplemental water resource for Ames.

Randy Beavers, Des Moines Water Works, accepted the Outstanding Water Resources Educator Award on behalf of the Iowa Children's Water Festival. The water festival is a daylong event in which 2,000 fifth-grade students participate in classroom activities, stage productions and games related to water resource education. This month marks the sixth anniversary of the festival.

Mike Skopec also was named an Outstanding Water Resources Educator. Skopec is a secondary level biology teacher for the North Tama County Community School District in Traer. He incorporated the study of Wolf Creek's water quality into his curriculum through collaboration with the IOWATER project. He has successfully increased the understanding of water resources of students, the Board of Education and a local watershed coalition. The Wolf Creek project has made it possible to link textbook, laboratory and real-world analysis of watershed processes to water quality.

Contacts: 

Stewart Melvin, Iowa State Water Resources Research Institute, (515) 294-1880

Barbara McManus, Ag Communications, (515) 294-0707