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LSM’s 50th Anniversary


2021 marks a very special milestone for LSM. Fifty years ago, a small group of lake professionals, academics, and other lake conservation-minded visionaries, created a plan for safeguarding the health of Maine’s extraordinary lakes. LSM and the incredible volunteer network we orchestrate are the culmination of that plan. To learn more about the history, some of the many people involved, and where we intend to go, please scroll down through this, our 50th Anniversary page. We will be updating it with new content all year long!

50 Years of Citizen Lake Monitoring – Wow!

LSM was conceived of a little over fifty years ago; it was an ambitious and innovative idea, but also remarkably simple and practical. The clear goal was to develop a program that would help interested citizens become directly involved in the critical process of monitoring Maine lakes. To be effective, the program needed to be accessible and educational, but also scientifically rigorous. It would vastly expand the scientific data related to Maine lakes and freshwater systems. This data is essential for developing and implementing effective conservation laws, policies, and practices. Because it would be established as a grass-roots network of knowledgeable citizens, it could be strong and widespread foundation for the future of Maine lake stewardship. LSM is the product that grew from that idea and since those early days in 1971, LSM has grown and thrived!

50k Matching Grant Campaign

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LSM 50th Anniversary Celebration Video – featuring YOU!

The production of this video was made possible thanks to a generous donation from

 Submissions have ended. Thank you for helping us celebrate and commemorate our 50th anniversary by sharing your personal LSM story!

Former submission protocol

Sumbissions have ended

 Please help us celebrate and commemorate our 50th anniversary by recording and sharing your own personal LSM story! We are not expecting perfection, but rather something far more important to us: a brief glimpse into what motivates you to be part of this organization! No special equipment needed; all you need is a camera that records video or better yet your cellphone. Below you will find all of the instruction and information you need to record and submit your own unique 1-minute LSM “selfie-video.” We will include as many of your stories as time and space allow in our 50th anniversary celebration video and will also be posting and sharing some individual selfie videos as they arrive, keeping the Lake Steward energy flowing throughout the remainder of this very special anniversary year.

How to Shoot a DIY Short Selfie-Video in 6 Easy Steps

(Adapted from blogpost by Rob Biesenbach)

1. Don’t Overthink It – Do you have your own personal LSM story? Check! Do you have access to a cell phone that can record video or a video camera? Check! Can you think of a location that helps to tell your story (your home or camp, the lakeshore, on your dock, out in your kayak? Check! Excellent! That’s pretty much all you need.

2. Keep it Simple – Technical quality is not nearly as important as your own unique story, delivered authentically with your own natural enthusiasm. No need to get fancy; an excellent video may be produced by simply going outside when the light is good and where the background is interesting, holding you phone at arm’s length, starting the video camera and letting your story fly.

3. Share Your Energy – The sun is shining, the birds are singing, you just went for a beautiful hike or a swim, had a wonderful meal or enjoyed a delicious cup of coffee and you are feeling really good? This is a perfect time to shoot your video! If you shoot your selfie video when you’re feeling energized, your energy will come right through the lens to the viewer.

4. Pick Your Spot – Wherever you decide to shoot your video, make sure it somewhere not heavily trafficked by passersby’s and that any background noise is at a tolerable level. For outdoor videos, mornings and afternoons often provide better light than midday. Whatever the source of light, just be sure to choose a camera angle where your face is well lit, but you are not squinting into the light nor glaringly backlit. Raising the camera up above your face a bit generally provides a more flattering angle. Be sure to frame the shot to best incorporate the elements you wish the viewer to see in the background.

5. Create Your Short Selfie Video! – Ideally, your selfie-video will tell your story and be at maximum 1 minute long.

You do not need to introduce yourself, as we will have a text overlay with your name(s) and the lake(s) you monitor. If you want to mention your type of monitoring (water quality, invasive species, watershed health, etc.) in your story and how long you have been monitoring for, please do so. Below are some example prompts to help you develop the key points of your story. You will only have time to touch on two or three points, so please choose the prompt(s) that most resonate with you. You are also welcome to come up with your own!

      • I decided to join the Lake Stewards of Maine because . . .
      • Through working with LSM I have learned . . .
      • One thing I have gained through my work with LSM that I treasure most is . . .
      • What I like most about my work as a Lake Steward of Maine is . . .
      • One of the most amazing/surprising things I encountered/discovered while out monitoring my lake was . . .
      • I continue to stay active as a Lake Steward because . . .
      • I am grateful for Lake Stewards of Maine for . . .

You may want to write down your two or three key points in advance of shooting your video, but there is no need to memorize them. Just plan on going over your points a few times prior to the shoot so you have the basic gist of what you want to say fresh in your mind when you hit the record button.

6. Do Multiple Takes If You Wish — But Not Too Many
If you go for perfection, you’ll be shooting your video all day long. Give yourself a half-hour max to get your one “keeper”. After half that amount of time (six or eight takes) you will likely have more than one great video take to choose from: choose one.

Example videos

Once you have successfully recorded your up-to-one-minute selfie, we urge you hit the record button just one more time for what we are calling your “bonus clip.” Simply look into the camera and bring your passion for your work to the following proclamation, “We are the Lake Stewards of Maine.” These clips will be woven together by our friend and lake videography guru Steve Underwood​, to create the grand finale of this celebratory video!

Once you have recorded your videos, you can upload them immediately after filling out this form:

Fridays at 4 for Lakes Webinar Series

Visit our  2021 Webinar Series page  to watch recordings from LSM’s summer series. Some of our featured speakers are Dr. Rachel Hovel, Tracy Hart, and Jeremy Deeds.

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Lake Stewards of Maine’s Annual Conference (VIRTUAL)
Celebrating 50 Years of Keeping an Eye on Maine Lakes through Community Science

Saturday, July 24


Saturday, July 24, 9 AM – 12:30 PM

9:00 Welcome and Opening Remarks
          Bill Monagle; past President and current Vice President, LSM Board of Directors
          Scott Williams; Executive Director, LSM
9:15 Barb Welch; President, LSM Board of Directors
9:20 Matt Scott; Founder Maine Department of Environmental Protection (Maine DEP) Lakes Program; VLMP (LSM) Visionary
9:40 Melanie Loyzim; Commissioner, Maine DEP
9:50 Hilary Snook; Senior Scientist, US EPA Region 1
10:05 Dave Courtemanch; former Division Leader, Maine DEP Lakes Program; current staff, The Nature Conservancy
10:10 Steve Norton; Professor Emeritus, University of Maine; LSM Advisory Board member
10:20 Linda Bacon; Program Leader, Maine DEP Lakes Program; LSM Board of Directors
10:25 Peter Fischer; past President, LSM Board of Directors
10:30 Break
10:45 Volunteer LSM “Selfie” Videos
10:55 Maine Field Guide to Aquatic Phenomena app
11:00 Matching Grant Challenge
Mike Cloutier; LSM Lake Monitor, LSM Development Committee
          Bob French; LSM Lake Monitor, LSM Board of Directors
11:30 Volunteer Recognition
12:30 Final Remarks


LSM 2021 Annual Conference Excerpt Linda Bacon


  • Maine DEP Lakes program since 1988
  • Steering committee member for LSM’s Transition from the government to NGO
  • LSM Board of Directors
  • Quality assurance officer for the water quality monitoring branch of LSM

LSM 2021 Annual Conference Excerpt Steve Norton


                                    Steve Norton

  • LSM Advisory Board
  • Professor Emeritus in the School of Earth and Climate Sciences, University of Maine


LSM 2021 Annual Conference Excerpt Dave Courtemanch

                                     Dave Courtemanch

  • Former Director of the Division of Environmental Assessment, Maine DEP
  • Freshwater Scientist, Maine Chapter of the Nature Conservancy

LSM 2021 Annual Conference Excerpt Matt Scott

                                   Matt Scott

  • LSM Advisory Board
  • Founder of the Maine DEP Lakes Program in 1970 and of Lake Stewards of Maine, VLMP at that time, in 1971.

LSM 2021 Annual Conference Excerpt Scott Williams

Contact information

Contact us at:     Phone: 207-783-7733       Email:

Hours of visitation at LSM Office:
  Mondays 9:00am - 3:00pm         Wednesdays 9:00am - 3:00pm
  Thursdays 11:00am - 3:00pm       Or by appointment

Our Mission

Lake Stewards of Maine (LSM) works to protect Maine lakes and to promote lake stewardship through widespread citizen participation in the gathering and dissemination of credible scientific information pertaining to lake health.


LSM is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization committed to the collection of information pertaining to lake water quality. For 50 years, trained volunteers throughout Maine have donated their time so that we may all learn more about one of Maine’s most beautiful and important resources — our lakes.