BoatUS officer honored for water access efforts


BoatUS assistant vice president of government affairs Ryck Lydecker was honored with a States Organization for Boating Access Outstanding Service Award at the group’s annual conference held last week in La Crosse, Wis.

The award is presented to an individual or agency that has made either a one-time or continuing contribution toward improved access on our nation’s public waters for boaters and anglers.

Since 2000, Lydecker has been a member and eventually chaired the Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council, which strives to support and increase recreational fishing boating opportunities nationwide and promote the social, economic and conservation benefits of recreational fishing and boating.

In 2004, he became chair of the federal Boating Infrastructure Grant Program Review Panel and conducted an evaluation of the program. Originally championed by BoatUS as a way to increase boating access through the building of transient boating facilities around the country, the BIG program is funded through a “user pay, user play” concept - money comes from sales and use taxes paid by boaters and anglers.

Today, Lydecker remains a member of BIG Committee for review of Tier 2 projects such as boat ramps and other launch facilities, and he’s also evaluated programs for the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation.

“Ryck is a tireless champion of boating, boating programs and clean water,” SOBA awards chairman David Kieffer said in a statement. “He’s always willing to help individuals or organizations better understand boating related grant programs and the role they play in keeping our waters clean and accessible to all.”