Lake Anna Civic president retires

Doug Smith retired as president of the Lake Anna Civic Association at the group’s annual membership meeting on July 27.

Smith has been at the association’s helm for eight years, previously serving two years as the treasurer and four as vice president.

“It has been a great pleasure to have served as your president,” Smith said. “I have met and worked with many great people and it was a huge learning experience for me.”

In his final “president’s column” in the group’s newsletter, Smith thanked the numerous volunteers he has worked with who “truly care about Lake Anna, its environment and its users. I cannot say enough for the LACA volunteers who have helped work on projects or accepted leadership roles, either on the  board or as committee chairs.”

Smith said he is most pleased with the many improvements in boating safety that have been completed during his tenure, including bridge and dock signs and feature maps as well as the improved law enforcement presence on the lake. He also cited improvements in development plans for lake projects and in state permits for activities such as dredging, waste treatment and power plant permit renewals.

The extensive work LACA did throughout the permitting and approval process for Dominion Energy’s third reactor is another win Smith attributes to the volunteers.

“Changing the LACA approach from opposition to cooperation and making a real impact in how development occurs at the lake has been a real positive for me,” Smith said. “Changing how LACA is perceived in the community in the process is another plus.”

Smith reminisced about the technical knowledge that he gained from learning in many areas, including biosolids, cooling systems for nuclear power plants, state permitting processes, sewage treatment alternatives, lake level control, hydrilla and dredging.   

“I have been witness to LACA volunteers doing great things for the lake,” he said. “I have been surprised at how difficult seemingly simple things can be to accomplish and I have seen how important an organization like LACA is to the future of Lake Anna.”

As Smith turned over the gavel to the newly elected president, Greg Baker, he encouraged those in attendance to get involved with the organization’s various committees.

“Being a part of it [LACA] has been interesting and rewarding,” Smith said. “If you have any spare time – and even if you don’t, I recommend active participation,” he said. “Thank you to all the past and current volunteers with whom I have worked. Thanks for the memories.”

To recognize his tenure on the board and his dedication to the lake community, Smith was presented with the Jack Bertron Distinguished Service Award. Bertron founded LACA in the early 1990s and served as its leader for several years.  The honor recognizes a person’s commitment to the betterment of the lake and its watershed, its residents and guests and its continued beauty.

“It’s an honor to join the ranks. Bertron awardees over the years have given so generously of their time and talents,” Smith said.

In addition to his leadership on LACA, Smith also works with the Lake Anna Advisory Committee as its hydrilla subcommittee chairman. He is on the Louisa County Water Authority Board, treasurer of the Louisa County Resource Council and a member of Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church. Even though he has stepped down from a leadership role, Smith plans to continue working for the betterment of Lake Anna as a resident and user and a resource to the new board.