Roy Vaughan, who retired as the Reclamation manager of the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project in 2021, was awarded the Bob Appel Friend of the Arkansas Award Thursday at the 26th annual #ArkansasRiver Basin #Water Forum

Roy Vaughan relaxes with his family at the Salida Steam Plant shortly after receiving the Bob Appel Friend of the Arkansas Award at the 26th annual Arkansas River Basin Water Forum Thursday, April 28, 2022. Photo credit: Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District

Here’s the release from the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District (Chris Woodka):

Roy Vaughan, who retired as the Bureau of Reclamation manager of the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project in 2021, was awarded the Bob Appel Friend of the Arkansas Award Thursday at the 26th annual Arkansas River Basin Water Forum.

“I had no idea I would be getting the award,” Vaughan said. “I really need to thank all of the people I worked with for this great honor.”

Vaughan was surprised by his wife, Stasi, and grown sons Chaz and Colton at the event as they walked onto the stage at the Salida Steam Plant, noting that the day was the 38th anniversary of their wedding.

Pueblo Dam

Vaughan began working for Reclamation in 1992 as dam superintendent at Pueblo Dam, which led him to an interest in all of the water operations of the Arkansas Valley, and water operations such as the Fry-Ark Project that import water from the western slope. He became manager of the Fry-Ark Project in 2008.

Last year’s recipient, Upper Arkansas Water Conservancy District Manager Terry Scanga, presented the Appel award and read excerpts from 14 people who worked with him during his career in all parts of the Arkansas River basin. He helped bring people together over such controversial issues as the Preferred Storage Options Plan, Southern Delivery System and Voluntary Flow Management Program. He was always eager to patiently explain water operations with a quick wit and great sense of humor.

“He felt the weight of occasionally failing to satisfy everyone’s wishes far more than he enjoyed the buoyancy of the many times he did indeed satisfy them,” wrote Chaffee County Commissioner Greg Felt. “Perhaps this is the price of being a conscientious public servant. Certainly, it is evidence of a deep regard for all of the envisioned benefits of the Fry-Ark Project.

The Appel Award is named for Bob Appel, who promoted the Arkansas River as coordinator of the Southeast Colorado Resource Conservation and Development Council until his death in 2003.

For more information, contact Jean van Pelt, Forum Coordinator, at arbwf1994@gmail.com.

Salida Steam Plant Arkansas River

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