Annual Meeting 2020

Utah Chapter Annual AFS Meeting 2020

Utah Chapter AFS Annual Meeting 

February 25-27, 2020 – St. George, Utah

Updates as of December 5, 2019

Hello Utah fisheries professionals:

The Utah Chapter AFS is excited to be hosting its 42st Annual Meeting in St. George, Utah, at the Hilton Garden Inn on February 25-27, 2020.

Registration Details

Early Registration is now open through January 24, 2020!  Click here to register.  Meeting registration dues cover the costs for all meals from Tuesday dinner through lunch on Thursday.  Shared motel rooms are included with your registration. To help with room arrangements, please provide the name of someone you would like to room with during the registration process (and that person should provide your name on their registration). Please also include the nights you plan on staying.  If you do not provide a name, you will be paired with someone.  You DO NOT need to make room reservations with the hotel as the Utah AFS Executive Committee will take care of this once registration closes.  If you prefer not sharing a room, you will be responsible for making your own reservation and covering the cost.  For UDWR employees – you will only be reimbursed for early registration costs, so please plan accordingly and register early.

We have an additional registration option this year for the Virgin River Symposium.  We are reaching out to folks to present in this session and many will be travelling from out of state.  In addition, there will be members of the Virgin River Program that will be attending the meeting and recovery team meetings.  The Virgin River Program has provided a generous sponsorship to the Utah AFS Chapter to assist in hosting the Virgin River Symposium, so we are providing a registration option for those individuals only interested in this Symposium.  Both of these options are free to encourage attendance, but we need you to register for this option whether you are presenting or just attending this session.  This will allow us to better plan for this session.

2020 Utah Chapter AFS Chapter meeting costs:

  • 2020 Utah Chapter Membership dues – $25*
  • Early Registration for Utah Chapter Members – $85**
  • Late Registration for Utah Chapter Member – 105**
  • Early Registration for Non-Utah Chapter Members – $135**
  • Late Registration for Non-Utah Chapter Members – $155**
  • Early Student Registration – $30**
  • Late Student Registration – $40**
  • Virgin River Symposium Presenter Registration – $0**
  • Virgin River Symposium One Day Registration – $0
  • Extra Banquet Ticket – $30

* for UDWR employees – the $25 Utah Chapter dues are not reimbursable; early Registration for Utah Chapter Members ($85) will be the maximum reimbursed for the 2020 meeting, please plan accordingly

** Includes continuing education, 2020 Chapter Meeting, two morning and one afternoon catered breaks, two complimentary breakfasts at hotel, two lunches, two dinners, and two nights hotel stay.

If you are not currently a Utah Chapter member, now is a good time to become one.  Membership fees help us continue to host meetings and become more progressive as a chapter.  We would like to become more financially independent using membership dues to conduct business.  We would also like to offer more benefits to our members like student scholarships; travel grants to National and Western Division meetings; and reduce Annual Meeting costs. Having more members associated with our chapter will help us accomplish these goals in the future.  You can pay chapter membership fees on the Annual Meeting registration page or through the National AFS website (click here).  Of note, you can now pay your membership dues via Paypal at AFS Chapter Dues via Paypal and keep up to date on your membership.

If you have any questions or concerns about the meeting or becoming a chapter member, please feel free to contact me.


Continuing Education Courses

Utah AFS is offering two continuing education courses at the Annual Meeting on Tuesday February 25, 2020.  Both classes are free of charge and will be held in classrooms at the Hilton Garden Inn.  If you plan on attending a Continuing Education course, you will still need to sign up while registering for the annual meeting so we can plan accordingly.  Space is limited in these courses, so I would suggest that you register early.   We are still working out some details related to these classes, so those of you that register will be contacted with more information as the meeting date approaches.  The two courses are:

1)    Title:  How to write and publish a manuscript in a scientific journal

  • Instructor:  Dr. Phaedra Budy
  • Date:  February 25, 2020
  • Time:  1-4 or 5 pm

Most of us are working on fisheries projects that can be published and should be shared within the scientific community.  If we don’t publish this work, the world will never know.  Attempting to publish in a scientific journal can be time consuming and frustrating.  Phaedra will provide tips and tricks to help make you more successful.  These will include deciding what type of scientific article fits your story/data as well as which journal would be a good option for submission.  Everything from study design, writing style, data presentation (choosing between tables or figures), and much more will be covered in this 3-4 hour class. 

2)      Telling our story – Working with media and developing our own media content.

  • Instructor: Brett Prettyman
  • Date:  February 25, 2020
  • Time:  1-4 pm

Brett Prettyman is the Intermountain West Communications Director for Trout Unlimited and will be leading a continuing education course focused on working with the media and developing our own stories. The course will include opportunities to take real-world examples and lessons and then allow course participants to practice with mock interviews and blog posts. Come prepared with your own data and story ideas. And we will provide tips on crafting a message.


Field Tour and Post Meeting Get Together

If you are not interested in either of the continuing education courses, we also have a Virgin River Fishes field tour on Tuesday February 25 from 1 to 5 PM.  The tour will be led by Rick Fridell, where you will view facilities along the Virgin River and have a discussion of how those facilities contribute to native fish recovery in the Virgin River.  In addition, we will also have a fun trap shoot at the Purgatory Shooting Club on Thursday, February 27 from 1:30 to 3:30 PM.  Come test your clay shooting skills against your fellow fisheries professionals.  If you are interested in either of these options, please indicate that in your registration.



Please consider nominating your colleague’s for an award! The award nomination DEADLINE is February 16, 2019.  Nominations need to be sent to Dale Fonken at [email protected]. This year’s awards include:

  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Professional of the Year
  • Award of Merit
  • Habitat Conservationist of the Year
  • Partner of the Year
  • Leaky Boot Award


Small Project Grants

We are excited to announce that we are accepting applications to provide a grant up to $500.00 for deserving projects.  The deadline for the grant applications are January 24, 2020.  All applications received will be voted on by the membership at the 2020 Business meeting during lunch on February 26.  In addition, all projects must be completed within a year, so that the winning applicant can present the results of the project at the Utah AFS 2021 meeting.  In your application, please include the following:

  • Project Title
  • Project Objectives
  • Project Description
  • General Project Timeline
  • Utah AFS Funding request: up to $500.00

The link to submit your application for the grant is:


Photo Submission

Please consider submitting your fish, wildlife, and landscape photos from the year. We would like to showcase photos from your work projects and adventures during the banquet. Photos can be submitted to Chante Lundskog at [email protected].

I look forward to seeing you at the annual meeting for another eventful and fulfilling event!  Please submit a paper or poster (click here) to showcase the great work that you have accomplished.  If you have any questions regarding the meeting, please feel free to contact me.

If you have suggestions, comments, or questions feel free to contact me.

George Weekley                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Utah Chapter President                                                                                                                                                                                          [email protected]


Hello Utah fisheries professionals:

The Utah Chapter AFS is excited to be hosting its 42st Annual Meeting at the Hilton Garden Inn in St. George, UT on February 25th-27th, 2020.  Our plenary session the morning of February 26th is on the challenges and successes on fisheries management in the Virgin River Basin.  Our goal for this full day symposium will be to bring in folks that work on the Virgin River in Utah, Arizona, and Nevada to talk about progress and issues in fisheries management in the Virgin River system.  This session will cover challenges of managing fish species in one of the driest and fastest growing communities in the United States, and will include conservation strategies that we can apply to our home waters.  Following our morning plenary session, additional concurrent sessions will include:

  • Fish Passages, Screens, and Barriers session
  • Innovative Techniques session
  • Several Contributed Papers sessions

This meeting will serve as a great opportunity to share your recent work with a diverse group of government representatives, non-government organizations, and academia from across the state.  All papers are welcome, including scientific papers as well as general informational.  Abstracts for papers are DUE January 31, 2020.  Don’t delay!  Follow this link (abstract submission form) for submission guidelines or visit the Utah AFS website (

Oral Presentation Guidelines

Oral presentations during the general sessions will be limited to a 20 minute time slot. We recommend limiting your presentation to 15 to 18 minutes to allow for questions.  If you have been asked by Utah AFS to present during the plenary session, your presentations will be limited to 30 minutes.


Poster Presentation Guidelines

Please restrict your poster to a maximum size of 3′ high (0.92 m) x 4′ wide (1.22 m) and have a smooth finish. Poster boards will be provided.  Posters can be attached to the boards with double-sided adhesive strips or hook and loop (VELCRO®) type fasteners.  If using VELCRO®, provide both sides (adhesive backing will be required). You are responsible for providing your own form of attachment.


Student Scholarship Guidelines

Utah AFS is awarding six student scholarships for this year’s meeting.  Registration fees for the 2020 meeting will be waived for those who are awarded the scholarships (this includes lodging, food, and registration dues).  Graduate and undergraduate students are encouraged to apply for these scholarships.  While preference may be given to those intending to present (oral or poster), giving a presentation is not a requirement.  To apply for these scholarships, please answer the following questions and submit your responses to George Weekley, Utah Chapter AFS President [email protected].

  • Name
  • Email
  • College or University
  • Do you plan on presenting at the 2020 AFS meeting?  If yes, will your presentation be oral or a poster?
  • What is your educational background related to fisheries/aquatic ecology?
  • What are your career goals?


We are still working on our 2020 meeting details, so there will be more to come regarding additional registration information and deadlines, awards and deadlines, and continuing education.

If you have suggestions, comments, or questions feel free to contact me.

George Weekley                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Utah Chapter President                                                                                                                                                                                          [email protected]


The Utah AFS Chapter is excited to host our 42nd Annual Meeting at the Hilton Garden Inn in St. George, Utah from February 25 to 27th, 2020.  Our EXCOM decided to pursue a sponsorship with the Virgin River Program to co-host a Virgin River symposium as part of our annual meeting.  Our goal for this full day symposium will be to bring in folks that work on the Virgin River in Utah, Arizona, and Nevada to talk about progress and issues in fisheries management in the Virgin River system.

In addition to the Virgin River session, we are planning on holding themed sessions including a Fish Passages, Screens, and Barriers session and an Innovative Techniques session.  If you have other ideas on themed sessions for the 2020 meeting, please let me know this fall.  As always, we’ll have plenty of room for general contributed papers.

Please mark your calendars so you don’t miss our 2020 Chapter Meeting!

Tentative Schedule:

  • February 25th – Afternoon: Continuing Education Courses
  • February 25th – Evening: Social Dinner
  • February 26th – Virgin River Symposium (Plenary and Afternoon Technical Papers)
  • February 26th – Afternoon: Themed Paper Sessions
  • February 26th – Evening: Banquet; Fundraising Event; Awards
  • February 27th – Morning (half day): Themed Paper Session and Contributed Paper Session

The organization of this meeting will be similar to meetings in past years.  Registration fees will cover meals and lodging as outlined in our Business Plan.  Registration, first call for papers, and deadlines will be available later this fall.  Of note, you can now pay your membership dues via Paypal at:

If you have suggestions, comments, or questions feel free to contact me.

George Weekley                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Utah Chapter President                                                                                                                                                                                          [email protected]