Friend of the Lake Award

The 2022 & 2020 Friend of the Lake Awards will be given at the Alta Club Reception and Banquet on Friday, May 20th

FRIENDS honors Tim Hawkes as the 2022 Friend of the Lake 

FRIENDS is delighted to recognize Rep. Tim Hawkes as the recipient of the 2022 Friend of the Lake Award. Tim is a champion and outstanding advocate of Great Salt Lake. First elected to the House of Representatives in 2014, his work on the Hill focusing on important water, Great Salt Lake, sovereign lands, and environmental issues, has been timely, significant, and deeply appHAWKETD.jpegreciated.

Tim serves on the House Business and Labor Committee, the House Natural Resources Committee, and in appointed leadership as Chair of the House Rules Committee. From 2013 – 2017, he served as co-chair of Governor Herbert’s State Water Strategy Advisory Team, and currently serves as General Counsel for the Great Salt Lake Brine Shrimp Cooperative, Inc.

Among his many legislative successes, during the 2019 General Session, Tim was Chief sponsor of HCR-10—House Concurrent Resolution to Address Declining Water Levels of Great Salt Lake. This unique and promising declaration unanimously passed by the Utah Legislature and signed by former Gov. Gary Herbert has been a catalyst for ongoing discourse within the Great Salt Lake watershed community about water related practices and policies in this desert state, funding for studies to inform effective solutions for the Lake, and as an inspiration for urgent and continuing legislation to address Great Salt Lake’s declining elevation.

Tim gets the gold for his tenacity and commitment to Great Salt Lake and its future.

Tim Hawkes2


FRIENDS honors Neka Roundy as the 2020 Friend of the Lake 

The Friend of the Lake Award is given to an individual, organization, program or business performing outstanding work in education, research, advocacy and/or the arts to benefit Great Salt Lake. 

There is a vibrant and active community of people working on behalf of the Lake. Their efforts help increase our understanding and awareness of our big salty neighbor which can lead to positive action for preservation of the ecosystem. To recognize these talents and contributions, FRIENDS of Great Salt Lake established this award to be presented at our Biennial Great Salt Lake Issues Forum.

We're honored to present the 2020 Friend of the Lake Award to Neka Fernelius Roundy. neka by tree

Neka has lived near Great Salt Lake for over forty years. As a young mother she took her children to the beach to watch the sun melt into the lake and to float in the salty waters. The outdoors and education have been a pattern in her life. Neka holds a Bachelor of Science in Recreation Management and a Master of Arts in Community School Education from Brigham Young University. She also did some doctoral work at the University of Utah. 

Neka was hired by Davis County as their first Tourism Coordinator in 1995, a position she enjoyed and expanded. At the suggestion of the Utah Office of Tourism, she started planning for the first Great Salt Lake Bird Festival in the fall of 1998. This Festival is still going strong twenty-two years later.

During the twenty four years Neka worked for Davis County Community and Economic Development, she was involved with many interests involving Great Salt Lake: Linking Communities; Wetlands and Migratory Birds; Farmington Bay Visitor Center committee/Great Salt Lake Nature Center; Master Plan committee for Greater Great Salt Lake ecosystem; traveled to Nayarit, Mexico to discuss habitat conservation with government officials; worked on surveys for the “Proposed Attitude Awareness Study of Great Salt Lake and Davis County Communities;" served as a member of the Legacy Parkway Scenic Byway Committee; served as a member of the Governor’s Great Salt Lake Advisory Council; and served as a Friends of Antelope Island board member.

Another part of her life has involved volunteering in her local community. Neka served on the Kaysville City Planning Commission for twelve years, the city council for six years, and as Kaysville’s first female mayor. In both work and community capacities Neka has spent many hours at the Utah State Legislature following important legislation and discussions.

Neka is honored to be recognized for this Friend of the Lake award. Many people have guided and educated her in efforts to make a difference to the health of Great Salt Lake. 

 neka at lakeNeka with Mirabilite Formations at Great Salt Lake, photo courtesy of Ann Neville

neka in mexico

Neka and friends at the International Migratory Bird Festival of Nayarit, MX, photo courtesy L. de Freitas