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Review for Lake Champlain International (LCI), Colchester, VT, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

Years ago, my three-year-old son stood for the first time on the shoreline of Lake Champlain and informed us all that "this is an ocean". His older sister immediately corrected him, explained that, no,this was a lake,, "the largest lake" she said "in the entire world".

Standing nearby was a young guy in cargo jeans who walked over to us and began chatting with my kids. He started talking about the Lake, about what was special about it, about how important it was for all of us. They asked some questions and I was amazed, both at this knowledge and his patience with my kids. He told them that he worked with some people who were trying to make Lake Champlain even better, even cleaner, even more fun for everyone. His name, he told us, was James.

And so now, all these years later, I see a photograph taken a week’s this very same fellow, James Ethlers, and he is sitting in Senator Bernie Sanders Office. They are talking about clean water... and another photo from a few hours later, James talking with Senator Pat Leahy. About clean water.

In fact, now that we have found him again, we see that he is everywhere working for an organization called Lake Champlain International...and doing what he did for my kids so many years ago..telling them about how to make Lake Champlain even better, even cleaner, even more fun for everyone. He is, I learn, the Executive Director for LCI. He is at the Statehouse, at elementary schools, busy providing articles for newspapers, talking on his radio program, defending clean water on social media, rallying, demonstrating. And working with staff to produce media of all types for the rest of us to use. Wed site and Facebook Page, gather Twitter followers, and on and on and on.

Oh, and he has many followers, this fellow James Ethlers. And many converts. One of his first converts, I happen to know, used to think that Lake Champlain was an ocean. But now, as a student at Saint Michael’s College, studying the Environmental Science, he knows better.

Imagine that...a young guy talks on a lakeshore with a couple of little kids...and something incredible happens.

Role:  Donor