Who we are . . .

In 2000, a group of concerned area residents gathered with U.S. Sen. Byron Dorgan to talk about fluctuating lake levels, limited lake access and an inadequate infrastructure. That first meeting sparked our desire to work together on mutual concerns. We quickly learned that our partnerships were invaluable. Cabin owners, chamber and city representatives, boat owners, state and federal officials and area concessionaires joined forces during the next 2 years to help make the lake an even greater resource.

Who are the members of Friends of Lake Sakakawea?
The Friends are stakeholders interested in building on the recreational, economic and environmental opportunities of Lake Sakakawea.

Here's a list of some of our recent accomplishments:

  • Worked closely with federal and state political leaders, state agencies and Corps of Engineers through public meetings, working committees and one-on-one contracts to give you a voice.

  • Worked in partnership with the Corps of Engineers and North Dakota Game & Fish to identify lake access points for stakeholders to use year-long.

  • Monitored runoff and storage situations, working to see that a balance is achieved between the navigation system and flood protection while seeking the best results for Lake Sakakawea.

  • Had a board member on the Missouri River Recovery and Implementation Committee. The MRRIC is in charge of mitigating losses of aquatic and terrestrial habitat, ensuring the recovering of the federally listed species under the Endangered Species Act and involved in restoration of the ecosystem to prevent further declines among other native species.

  • Had as many as five board members attend meetings of an organization forming, the Missouri River Stakeholders. The organization will provide a broad perspective on Missouri River including flood control, water supply, recreation and fish and wildlife.

  • Worked in partnership with the Corps of Engineers to keep members informed about lake levels, implications of downsizing the Corps' lake management budget and basin-wide concerns. We spoke with members of congress to elevate concerns about the lack of funding for the Corps' lake management budget and discussed concerns with congressional delegation members on a regular basis.

  • Attended a briefing and Q&A with the Corps of Engineers' Riverdale staff to learn more about their efforts in the area of oil and gas development, recreation, access and threatened and endangered species.

  • Served as a voice at numerous public meetings by working with others to find solutions. The Friends are regularly in contact with the North Dakota Game & Fish, Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish & Wildlife, Garrison Conservancy District, local chambers and county organizations, water boards and weed boards.

  • Kept our members up to date on lake related issues through emails and newsletters. We are vigilant in monitoring ever changing developments and working for you year-round to give you first-hand information on the lake and the Missouri River Basin system.

  • Continue to share the message of our efforts and concerns about the lake with area media. The Friends have earned a reputation of an organization that is accessible, committed and dedicated to the causes of the lake.

  • Continue to closely monitor oil development, emergency preparedness and oversight efforts by the state and federal agencies and energy companies.

  • Represented members at the Corps' Annual Operating meetings and continued discussions with Corps' administration about the needs of the federally managed state parks.

  • Supported and developed partnerships between concessionaires, local businesses and federal agencies and concerned citizens.

  • Continued to educate the public about the dangers of Aquatic Nuisance Species. The Friends administer a grant for the ND Game & Fish department in a proactive educational campaign to try to keep ANS out of North Dakota bodies of water.

  • Participated in the selection process for a new lake manager for the Corps of Engineers' Riverdale office. The Friends have had a representative involved in the interview process for the past 10 years.

  • Participated in a strategic planning process to set our course for the next three years with committees and goals.