Date: Thu, 09/23/2010 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Erin Mooney, TU National Press Secretary: 703-284-9408 Colorado Volunteer Receives Trout Unlimited's Highest Award Sharon Lance, of Centennial, Colo. is recognized for her conservation efforts. ARLINGTON, Va.– Trout Unlimited (TU) has awarded its top volunteer honor to Sharon Lance, of Centennial, Colo. TU President and CEO Chris Wood presented her with the award at the organization's annual meeting in Waterville Valley, New Hampshire this past weekend. The Ray Mortensen Award for Outstanding Volunteer Leadership is granted annually to a “one in a thousand” individual who has made an extraordinary contribution to local coldwater fisheries conservation efforts. “Sharon is the epitome of a TU leader,” said Chris Wood, TU's president and CEO. “She is passionate, dedicated, and extraordinarily generous with her time and expertise. Her influence and reach extend well beyond Colorado. Anyone who cares about trout and salmon should give gratitude to Sharon Lance,” Wood said. During her involvement in TU, Lance has held numerous volunteer leadership positions, including president of the Cutthroat Chapter, located in suburban Denver. She has served as Colorado Trout Unlimited's treasurer, vice president and president. She has, for the last five years, served as a trustee on TU's board of trustees. “What sets Sharon apart is not just her effectiveness, but her vision in creating new initiatives and seeing them through to fruition. Nowhere has that been clearer than in her work with youth," said Sinjin Eberle, President of Colorado Trout Unlimited. “Her leadership helped Colorado TU launch an annual River Conservation and Fly Fishing Youth Camp, now in its fifth year. Through her support and guidance, we have brought the Trout in the Classroom program to Colorado as a way of working in schools with the next generation of conservationists.” Lance, President of Fortin Financial Services, Inc., and a certified financial planner, has been a TU member for over 20 years and was a driving force in creating Colorado Trout Unlimited's River Conservation and Fly Fishing Youth Camp, a camp that teaches conservation and fly fishing to children ages 14 to 18. She was instrumental in bringing the Trout in the Classroom program to Colorado, an educational curriculum that teaches children about trout and conservation by having students raise trout in their classrooms. Lance also led the Cheesman Canyon Restoration Project along the South Platte River which rebuilt the Gill Trail and added river access trails to make the canyon safer and reduce erosion. Trout Unlimited is the nation's largest coldwater conservation organization, with 140,000 members dedicated to conserving, protecting, and restoring North America's trout and salmon fisheries and their watersheds.