The following profile was prepared by The FUND for Lake George prior to its 2021 merger with the LGA.
Kathy Flacke Muncil saw the news. Saw the murky green blanket of harmful algal blooms (HABs) covering New Jersey’s largest lake. Saw the business owners painfully describing the closed beaches, empty sidewalks and silent cash registers of last summer’s tourist season.
“Not here, not on Lake George. A toxic bloom would be the tragedy of tragedies.”
As CEO of one of the Lake George region’s iconic hospitality businesses, the Fort William Henry Corp., Kathy can’t imagine the devastation such a bloom would have on this region’s lake-based economy. “Not here, not on Lake George,” she says. “A toxic bloom would be the tragedy of tragedies.”
To help guard against HABs and all threats to lake health, Kathy has stepped up to serve as founding Chair of The FUND for Lake George’s Council of Business Advisors. Comprised of ten regional business leaders, the volunteer group works hand-in-hand with The FUND to keep Lake George clear and clean.
Council members are driven by an acute understanding that the environment and economy are opposite sides of the same coin, with Lake George the treasured currency. Among their first actions, The FUND’s business advisors played a critical role in calling for the state funding needed to replace the Village of Lake George’s outdated wastewater treatment plant and reduce the outflow of algae-causing nutrients. A state-of-the-art plant is now under construction.
Kathy is also a strong proponent of The FUND’s Science-to-Solutions approach to lake protection, particularly the role of The Jefferson Project at Lake George in addressing the algal bloom threat.
“We are blessed with the resources we need to protect the health of the Lake and our lake-based economy,” she says. “It’s essential that business owners, elected officials and anyone who benefits from the Lake’s legendary water quality and natural splendor work together with the scientists to succeed. I think of The FUND as my science department to support our businesses. The actions we take together now will be seen in the Lake George we leave for our children and theirs.”