The Coosa River Basin Initiative will formally introduce its new Executive Director and Riverkeeper to its members Tuesday, Jan. 31, during the organization’s annual membership meeting at the Rome-Floyd ECO River Education Center at Ridge Ferry Park in Rome. The meeting begins at 6 p.m. with light dinner and refreshments with the program beginning at 6:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.
Jesse Demonbreun-Chapman, formerly watershed outreach coordinator with Ogeechee Riverkeeper in Savannah, began work with CRBI in late December.
Also at the meeting, CRBI will elect new board officers, recognize key volunteers and supporters, present the organization’s 2016 Annual Report and give a preview of this year’s programs and activities.
Following this short business meeting, CRBI will screen the recent documentary, “A Breakthrough in Renewable Energy.” The film looks at recent advances in solar energy that are making it an affordable alternative to traditional fossil fuel generated electricity.
Also at the meeting, CRBI will recognize Mike and Connie Sams of River Dog Paddle Co. in Rome with the organization’s Cedar Creek Park and Outdoor Center Corporate Citizen Award. The Rome paddle board and clothing shop and adjacent outdoor beer garden, River Dog Outpost, have supported numerous CRBI fundraising events since opening in 2014 while also promoting river recreation through their businesses.
CRBI will also honor Armuchee resident Kikki Edmonds as the organization’s Ray Kelley Volunteer of the Year. Edmonds was instrumental in organizing and informing residents about the threats associated with natural gas exploration and hydraulic fracturing or fracking. She has assisted CRBI in getting local governments to adopt resolutions urging the Georgia General Assembly to update the state’s outdated oil and gas drilling laws.