We hereby continue to recognize the impact Pete Rolader had on our community. We valued his input, guidance and mentoring us to be “stewards of the lake”. In acknowledgment of his contributions, on May 17, 2008 we dedicated “Pete’s Point” to inspire others to lead this community as he has done for so for many years.
Pete Rolader was a Lifetime Honorary Member of the BLHA since 1982 and thus had been a BLHA member in good standing since 1973, thirty-five (35) years at the time of this dedication.
In 1973, the lake was owned by three separate individuals – all developers. The lake itself was maintained voluntarily by the Berkeley Lake Civic Association, representing less than half of the property owners. The dam was heavily forested and owned by a developer.
Pete was the primary architect and attorney who took responsibility for and provided leadership for incorporating the Berkeley Lake Homeowners Association (BLHA) in March 1973.
He led the negotiations to broker a deal which allowed the BLHA to take ownership of the lake for the price of paying the previous owners’ taxes on it. The details and extended activities which brought about full ownership under one entity did not get finalized until 1990. That was dedication to a cause!
Pete contributed to this community and to the BLHA greatly. Upon founding the BLHA, he served as our first homeowner association president.
Pete passed away on June 1, 2011 at the age of 86.
Pete’s Comments at the Dedication
President Seitz, Members of Berkeley Lake Homeowners Association, Friends, Relatives, and Distinguished Guests:
You are attending a rare and perhaps once in a lifetime occasion, where a lawyer is given a microphone and a captive audience and he is at a loss for words!
I am flabbergasted! I have been thinking about what to say to you in response to this honor which you have bestowed upon me. Lawyers are usually “kissed” or “cursed,” depending on the situation, but now you have gone a step further and have embraced me within your arms as you have done at Berkeley Lake for over 30 years. I am deeply honored and deeply touched.
Perhaps I can best explain my feelings like this: Some 30 plus years ago I was living down in Buckhead on a part of a 50-acre tract of land my grandfather bought there in the 1860s for $800. My next door neighbor took in a stranger who wandered over from the State of Alabama to apply for a job as head coach of the football team at the University of Georgia.
He plowed up my front yard while he taught my children to play football. After an extended period of time, he landed the job and became the head football coach. He remained there for years, became athletic director and retired a few years ago.
Coach Vince Dooley became a legend and recently he was honored by the University of Georgia, the State of Georgia, the football team and everybody in bulldog country with the dedication of a parcel of land in the athletic complex at Athens.
As I read about and heard about this I began to think and realize what an honor a land dedication is and what a memorial it is to have such a thing done. When Steve Seitz informed me of “Pete’s Point” this was the first thing that came to my mind. I could not believe that the citizens of Berkeley Lake were so honoring me.
“Move over Vince Dooley, you are not the only catfish in the sea. Pete Rolader has a fishing hole named for him on the beautiful shores of Berkeley Lake.”
I must take advantage of this opportunity to publicly express my sincere appreciation for all Berkeley Lake has meant to me. In my younger years, my wife and I had a small weekend cabin where we spent the weekends with our young children – fishing, swimming, boating and enjoying our leisure hours together. Then, after our youngest child had graduated, we moved to Berkeley Lake.
As I stood on the deck at Frog Hollow with Miss Ginny, I held my arm around her waist, looked down the lake and told her, “Honey, it is from here to eternity if they don’t foreclose the mortgage.” Well, the mortgage has been paid off, Miss Ginny has gone on to eternity and God has left me around to continue to enjoy this place.
I want to thank you for all of the opportunities you have given me to help advocate and put into place the community we have today. It looks like it is working beautifully. I appreciate your trust and confidence in me, and I have given you the best I have to offer.
I want to express my gratitude and appreciation to all of those dozens of dedicated people, who have given of their time and talent. My hopes and my prayers are that the present leadership and the leaders to come will continue to perpetuate and build upon the principles and programs which have made Berkeley Lake what it is today – a unique place where people live in peace and harmony.
As I bask in the sunshine of God’s love, on the shores of Berkeley Lake, with peace in my valley and all well with my soul, I pray God will continue to bless us all.
Thank you, thank you, thank you.