In addition to his volunteer work with youth groups and with Lackawanna Valley TU (LVTU), Charles “Charlie” Charlesworth has served on the board of directors for the Lackawanna River Conservation Association, he’s been a director with the Lackawanna County Conservation District, a member of the Lackawanna Heritage Valley Authority, a member of the Pennsylvania Environment Council, and he’s a graduate of the Penn State Master Watershed Steward Program. Through his efforts with all these groups, the Lackawanna River was named Pennsylvania’s 2020 River of the Year.
He’s also had important roles as president of LVTU, president of Pennsylvania Council of TU (PATU), and also was part of PATU’s Legislative Action Committee, which makes monthly visits to the Pennsylvania House and Senate, speaking to members about environmental issues important to coldwater fisheries. In 2019 he stepped down as PATU president and was appointed to the Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission. As a commissioner, he has been involved in the classification of more than 180 new Class A Wild Trout stream sections and more than 600 new Trout Waters designations. In that role, he’s also been involved with significant dam removals in Pennsylvania and in land acquisitions and fishing leases for restoration and/or public access.
His previous awards include the Pennsylvania Environmental Council’s Thomas Shelburne Award for Conservationist of the Year (2015), Pennsylvania Trout Unlimited’s Inky Moore Award for Environmental Excellence (2016), and nationally, the Trout Unlimited Award for Distinguished Service (2016). He also received a citation from Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf in 2015 for his conservation efforts.
Because of his legacy of successful environmental and educational efforts, Charles Charlesworth has now also been named as Fly Fisherman’s 2021 Conservationist of the Year, and Simms Fishing Products will make a $10,000 donation in his name to Lackawanna Valley Trout Unlimited to continue its work in river restoration, water quality monitoring, and youth education.
For the complete story on Charlesworth’s accomplishments, see https://www.flyfisherman.com/editorial/2021-conservationist-of-the-year/387254