Milt Miller was welcomed to the newly created position of Lake Restoration Manager for Grand Lake St. Marys with a round of applause from his fellow members of the Grand Lake St. Marys Restoration Commission Monday at their regular weekly meeting.

“I’m very passionate, very committed and very optimistic about restoring the health of Grand Lake St. Marys,“ was Miller’s answer to the shout of  “Speech, Speech” from the Commission Members.  Miller has shown his commitment to the efforts to clean up Grand Lake St. Marys by volunteering hundreds of hours to the effort over the last three years.  

According to Tom Knapke, facilitator of the Restoration Commission, Miller was chosen from a very competitive field of 24 candidates.  “He brings an intimate knowledge of the lakes problems and possible solutions which will afford us the ability to forge ahead without any loss of momentum,” Knapke said. “He also has 17 years of management, sales and business development and excellent name recognition regionally and at the state level which is very important to the Lake Manager’s position.”  

He is a graduate of The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio with a B.A. in Journalism and Public Relations. Years of Civic Involvement include; Founding member GLSM Restoration Commission, Treasurer of St. Marys Kiwanis, President of North grove Cemetery Assoc., Vice President of Mercer County Sportsman’s Association, President of Lake Development Corporation, St. Marys Summerfest Steering Committee, Board of Directors at Otterbein Retirement Community, Fraternal Order of Eagles and past president of the St Marys Area Chamber of Commerce.

Miller’s compensation package of $72,000 inclusive of benefits is funded by the Department of Natural Resources; the cities of Celina and St. Marys; Auglaize and Mercer Counties; Lake Improvement Association and the Grand Lake St. Marys Restoration Commission.

The primary goal of the Grand Lake Restoration Commission is to restore the health of the lake to ensure that the lake is functional for use this year and every year thereafter.  To help address this need, community leaders and volunteers came together in December 2009 to form the Grand Lake St. Marys Restoration Commission – a pioneering initiative dedicated to fostering the regional cooperation and resources needed for the environmental renewal and sustainability to the lake.  The initial efforts primarily focused on identifying the proven scientific strategies and technological solutions able to solve our environmental crisis.

Together, partner agencies have identified various watershed and in/near-lake alternative best management practices (BMPs) that could be used to help meet the qualitative and quantitative restoration goals for Grand Lake St. Marys and its surrounding communities. Success of these partnerships is driven by the unique strengths of the collaborators wishing to identify new technologies and target entrepreneurial funding to bring them to market.