Our Suffolk-Nansemond IWLA chapter (S-N IWLA) hosted the quarterly IWLA Virginia Division meeting held on October 19th, at the Kings Fork Community House on Kings Fork Road in Suffolk, VA. In attendance were several officers of the IWLA Virginia division, including President Ernie Padgette and spouse/IWLA national director Jill Padgette, vice presidents Herb Pritchett and Harry Kidder, Secretary Michele Bell, as well as several IWLA VA divison national directors from all over the state of Virginia. Also in attendance were officers from the Chesapeake IWLA chapter and our own S-N IWLA chapter past presidents Will Haas and H.J. Miller.
S-N IWLA chapter Ike and Vice President Darden Langston cooked for the group a delicious pork-loin with blueberry reduction sauce, with help from S-N IWLA chapter Ike Claudia Powell (Food Chair) who provided a light breakfast of pastries with coffee/juice, with luncheon sides of yams, peas and carrots, apples, rolls, and tea. Claudia and Wanda Gerard each provided scrumptious home-made cakes for dessert.
During the business portion of the meeting, each National director gave a summary of the recent activities for their respective chapters to which they are assigned. Also, a donation grant by the IWLA Virginia division of $10,000 was approved in their budget for the IWLA Virginia Save Our Streams (SOS) program. Highlights of the SOS presentation included discussion of the expenses involded in uploading data to the IWLA National Clean Water Hub, with efforts being concentrated in two areas: the mid-atlantic region and Iowa. Only fresh-water river stream monitoring “protocols” (procedures for ensuring data quality control) are supported–there is no provision yet for salt-water tidal monitoring, as inquired by H.J. Miller.
It was noted that over the past 6 years, membership head count tallies across all IWLA chapters has declined by approximatley 10%. Ernie suggested that perhaps increased marketing efforts could help reverse this trend, and towards that goal handed out several folding IWLA fabric logos for use in capturing selfies at local IWLA chapter events for subsequent upload to the Virginia division website. Also, Ernie presented S-N IWLA Chapter President Ray Powell with a gift of a monogrammed chapter president t-shirt and several monogrammed hats.
At the conclusion of the business meeting, Jim Trommatter took several of our guests on a tour of our chapter park. All in all, it was a very gratifying experience to those who attended, and we look forward to hosting another Virginia division meeting in the future.