Dinner Meetings

Dinner meeting are generally held once per month on a weekday. Meetings provide an opportunity to mingle with other professionals, students, and people interested in water resources. Typically, dinner is provided followed by a one hour presentation by featured guests.

Upcoming dinner meetings

26 Sep 2017 5:30 PM • Pyramid Brewery 1201 First Avenue South Seattle, WA  98134


Past Dinner Meetings

December 13, 2016 Annual Members Meeting, New Board Member Announcement, and Social, Plus Film Showing - "Treaty Talks: Paddling up the Columbia River for People and Salmon")

The annual members meeting and induction of the 2017 board of directors was held at Naked City Bewery in Seattle on December 13.  This was a chance to network with members at an informal dinner, and to meet the board of directors.  A showing of the short film "Treaty Talks: Paddling up the Columbia River for People and Salmon” concluded the evening with its tale of inspiration, dedication and a mission for the future.

About the film: "Treaty Talks: Paddling up the Columbia River for People and Salmon” is the story of a journey 1,243 miles from sea to source.  The journey began with five logs.  Five logs were carved by youth and students above Grand Coulee Dam into five Salmon Canoes, one for each of the Five Salmon.  Their mission was to accomplish something that so far has not been done: return Salmon above the blockages on the Upper Columbia.

November 10, 2016 Ellensburg Dinner Meeting - Naneum/Whiskey/Cherry Watershed Assessment

Presented by: Jason Smith and Craig Broadhead, Jacobs, with an introduction by Mark Cook, Kittitas County

The goals of this assessment are to gather information needed to develop a consensus on flood hazard reduction projects, irrigation and infrastructure improvements, and priority salmon recovery actions in the Wilson, Naneum and Cherry Creek watersheds, and to develop criteria, options and a schedule for subsequent projects.

September 28, 2016 Dinner Meeting - No Drought About It: Managing the Baker Project's Driest Season

John Chandler, Water Resources Technical Lead, Puget Sound Energy

In 2015 the Baker Project, located in the Skagit River basin, experienced the worst drought in its 90 year record.  The drought occurred during the implementation of the Baker Project's new FERC license, which requires a much higher minimum instream flows than previous operations.  How does a water manager handle the competing objectives of a stressed resource in this situation?  This talk will cover the low snowpack in 2015, how decisions were made to fulfill the license requirements with an uncertain water supply, communications with external stakeholders, and some thoughts about the present and future water resources situation in Washington.

About the Speaker - John Chandler is the water resources technical lead at Puget Sound Energy.  He is the water manager of the Baker Project, a two reservoir system with three powerhouses and a combined capacity of 200 MW.  John also supports operational compliance, dam safety, license implementation, and marketing.  He received an M.S. in Water Resources & Environmental Engineering from the University of Maine at Orono in 2008.

June 14, 2016 Dinner Meeting - Washington State Legislative Update - Focus on Water Resources

Annual Joint Meeting - Washington Hydrologic Society and AWRA-WA

Dave Christensen, Department of Ecology

Water Resource issues are always contentious during the legislative session.  This year was no different.  What was different from recent years was that several water resource bills made it through the legislative process and were signed into law.  Dave will talk about the good, the bad, and the political.  He will discuss the bills that didn’t pass, and provide some of the “back story” and insight about the likelihood similar issues will arise again next year.  He will also cover how Ecology is implementing the bills that passed.  And, if asked, he probably can make some not-so-bold predictions for the 2017 session!

Dave has been the Program Development Section Manager for Washington Department of Ecology Water Resources Program for the last two years. He leads a team that develops state rules and policies, and works with the legislature on changes to water resource laws.  Overall, he has worked in environmental health and natural resource protection programs for state and local government for twenty years. Dave holds a B.S. degree from the University of Washington in Fisheries Biology and an M.S. in Limnology and Oceanography from the University of Wisconsin.

May 12, 2016 Dinner Meeting - NGWREF Darcy Lecture

Presentation - Seeing Things Differently: Rethinking the Relationship Between Data, Models, and Decision Making

Ty Ferré, Professor, University of Arizona

Dr. Ferré’s lecture explores how the practice of hydrology depends on computer models while at the same time new methods have been adapted or developed for characterizing and monitoring the subsurface.  He notes these two areas have evolved almost completely independently of one another, but posits a unified approach is needed – designing measurement methods in the context of numerical analysis that address specific scientific and management questions.  Accordingly, Dr. Ferré will present an integrated overview of the relationships among models, measurements, and decisions, including:

  • Discussing what is actually being measured when measurements are made, with a focus on the large scale from pumping tests to geophysics;
  • Describing how these measurements currently are being merged with models and how this process could be improved;
  • Covering how hydrogeologists can turn the standard approach to combining measurements and models around by using models to help identify more informative measurements; and
  • Exploring how the optimal design of a measurement and modeling campaign can, and should be, driven by the specific practical or scientific questions being asked.

During his lecture tour, Dr. Ferré will address academic researchers, government scientists and regulators, groundwater professionals, and stakeholders in at least 10 different countries on six continents.  In addition, Dr. Ferré will visit elementary, intermediate, and high schools to talk about careers in science, in general, and hydrology in particular.  He anticipates giving his talk to about 100 different audiences in North America, Europe, Asia, South America, Africa, Middle East, and Oceania (Australia, New Zealand).

About the Speaker - Ty Ferré, Ph.D., is a Professor in the Department of Hydrology and Water Resources at the University of Arizona. He received his bachelor's degree in geophysical engineering from the Colorado School of Mines and his Ph.D. in Earth sciences from the University of Waterloo.

The Darcy Award – This lecture series was named in honor of Henry Darcy of France for his 1856 investigations that established the physical basis of groundwater hydrogeology.  The National Ground Water Research and Educational Foundation (NGWA) is an American public educational foundation which annually awards the Darcy Lecturer. This is one of the most prestigious awards for subsurface hydrology; it comes with the duty of delivering 30-50 lectures across the globe.  The Darcy Lecturer award highlights how successful and necessary interdisciplinary research approaches have become.

March 29, 2016 Dinner Meeting

Presentation  - Drinking Water and Climate Change

Brian Walsh, Policy and Planning Section Manager, Washington Department of Health/Office of Drinking Water

This presentation explores specific risks that climate change poses to Washington’s drinking water systems.  Brian Walsh will review the regulatory context for Group A and B drinking water systems, and current stressors to these systems that must be managed to ensure safe drinking water.  He will examine how climate-related conditions and events may add new stressors to some drinking water systems. These stressors include declines in some groundwater supplies, changes in precipitation patterns, sea-level rise, and events like drought, wildfires and floods.  Participants will gain an understanding of how these risks, among other factors, may influence drinking water management in the coming years.  Finally, Brian will make recommendations and will invite discussion about adaptive strategies, tools and partnerships that could be employed to strengthen the resilience of drinking water systems in the state.

In 2015, Brian was hired as the Policy Manager for the WA Department of Health / Office of Drinking Water.  He supervises an interdisciplinary staff responsible for drinking water rules content, ground water technical support, water resources policy, emergency response planning, legislation, and capacity development.  Current issues include rules for Group A water systems, emergency loan program under the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, fluoride, and total coliform.  His group also engages on water availability guidance, water use efficiency, climate change, nitrate contamination of groundwater, ASR, and reclaimed water.

Prior to working at the Department of Health, Brian was the Planning Manager for 2 years at the Puget Sound Partnership where he was responsible for maintaining and updating the 2014-15 Puget Sound Action Agenda, including strategies, near-term actions, and targets for the recovery of Puget Sound. Brian spent the bulk of his career at the WA Department of Ecology in the Water Resources and Shorelands Programs where he was involved in water resources policy, instream flow setting, trust water rights, climate change, FERC relicensing, drought response, watershed planning, seawater intrusion, and water acquisition. Brian has a degree in Environmental Planning from The Evergreen State College.

February 23, 2016 Dinner Meeting

Presentation  - Update on Recent Court Cases: The New Rules on Water Availability as Defined by Washington Courts and Legislative Response

Dan Von Seggern, Staff Attorney, Center for Environmental Law & Policy (CELP)

As last summer’s drought shows, our water supply depends on precipitation that is increasingly uncertain in the face of climate change.  Washington law requires protection of instream flows that will support fish and wildlife as well as recreational and aesthetic values.  The reality of climate change demands that we plan for increasing uncertainty in water supply.   Pressure from development has resulted in increased conflict among water uses, and several recent court decisions will have broad effects on how water is allocated.   This presentation reviewed fundamental principles of Western water law, and discussed the recent Washington Supreme Court decisions in Swinomish v. Ecology and Foster v. Ecology, which reaffirmed protections for instream flows and wildlife, as well as their implications for water users.  Finally, actions taken by this year’s Legislature were discussed. 

Dan Von Seggern is a staff attorney at CELP, working on legal matters involving water use, conservation, and planning as well as on state water policy.   After graduating from the University of Washington Law School in 2007, he worked as a public defender and in civil litigation, joining CELP in 2015.  Prior to his legal career, Dan spent 20 years working in chemistry, molecular biology and gene therapy.  Dan is a member of the Washington State Bar Association.  

January 27, 2016 AWRA-WA Winter UW Student Chapter Mixer

Presentation - OLYMPEX: A Ground Validation Field Campaign over the Olympic Peninsula for the Global Precipitation Measurement GPM Satellite

Guest Speaker Dr. Lynn McMurdie

December 8, 2015 Dinner Meeting, 2016 Board Election, and Movie "Lost Rivers"

Annual Members Meeting and Introduction of 2016 Board Candidates: 6:00 pm

2016 AWRA-WA Board election ballots due: 7:00 pm (paper ballots available for members at registration table; results announced after movie)

Movie “Lost Rivers”: 7:00 – 8:15 pm

LOST RIVERS examines hidden waterways in cities around the world and introduces us to people dedicated to exploring and exposing them. In Montreal, urban explorer Danielle Plamondon and photographer Andrew Emond follow the stony underground tunnels that contain the Rivière Saint-Pierre. In Bresica, Italy, a group of urban explorers conduct popular, officially-sanctioned tours through the city's network of medieval rivers.

More and more municipal governments are recognizing the wisdom of these explorers and making their once-buried waterways more accessible. Drawing inspiration from Seoul, whose Cheonggyecheon River was opened to the public in the early 2000s after 40 years of being hidden beneath a highway. Yonkers, New York has committed itself to "daylighting" its Saw Mill River, which has been buried under the city's downtown for the past 90 years. In London and Toronto, planners are rethinking the way they manage their rivers for environmental reasons, responding to structural problems that have to increasingly frequent flooding and sewer overflows.

As climate changes forces us to reconsider the relationship between the built environment and our natural resources, LOST RIVERS brings to life an aspect of urban ecology that has long been kept secret.

For more information click here 

Watch the movie trailer on YouTube here 

November 3, 2015 Dinner Meeting and CWU Student Chapter Mixer

Presentation–What’s happening in Central Washington: An Overview of Ecology’s Water Resources Program

Sage Park, Regional Director, Washington State Department of Ecology

Washington State Department of Ecology’s Central Region Water Resources Program faces many permitting challenges. This presentation provides an overview of what the Central Region Water Resource Program works on, such as the 2015 drought response and water banking.  It will also include an overview of innovative partnerships that the region has developed with Irrigation Districts to improve instream flows for fish.

Sage Park is the Regional Director for the Central Region office of the Washington State Department of Ecology, appointed by Director Maia Bellon. Sage brings effective working relationships with tribal and local government leaders to the region.  This will be key for the complex and challenging projects across the seven Central Region counties. She previously worked as Section Manager for Ecology’s Water Resources Program.  She and her staff of 28 worked hard on the Yakima River Basin Surface Water Adjudication (Acquavella), trust water rights, water budget neutral determinations, rural water supply issues, and compliance and enforcement issues while issuing permit and change decisions, including emergency drought authorizations.

Prior to the working with Water Resources, Sage was with the Waste to Resources program where she led Ecology’s implementation of the Beyond Waste Plan along with the sustainability and green building initiatives in Central Washington. Sage began her career at Ecology in 2001 in the Air Quality program. Sage also has experience outside of Ecology leading teams at Yakima County’s Planning Department and Kittitas County’s Environmental Health Program. She also serves on the board of directors of the Yakima Greenway Foundation. Sage has a B.A. in Geography from Central Washington University.

October 7, 2015 Dinner Meeting

Presentation – Planning for Climate Change in the Wenatchee River Basin: The Alpine Lakes Storage Optimization Project  

Mike Kaputa, Director, Chelan County Natural Resource Department

The Icicle Work Group was convened in December 2012 by Chelan County and Ecology’s Office of the Columbia River to develop a long-term water management plan for Icicle Creek and surrounding tributaries.  Long-term water demands, instream flows for fish, ongoing hatchery obligations and a growing population all contribute to a complex and historically contentious Icicle Creek basin.  Compounded by climate change implications, water wars in Icicle Creek promise to get worse without significant planning and intervention.  The presentation will focus on a variety of potential water solutions for Icicle Cree, including storage, hatchery and irrigation district upgrades, and conservation measures.

Mike Kaputa, AICP, is the Director of the Chelan County Natural Resource Department, working for the Chelan County Commissioners and local communities.  The department is engaged in a number of collaborative natural resource planning efforts and implementation projects.  One of these efforts, the Icicle Work Group, has been co-convened by Chelan County and the WA Department of Ecology Office of the Columbia River to develop a comprehensive water resource management plan for the Icicle Creek watershed and surrounding areas.

September 16, 2015 Dinner Meeting

Presentation – Clean Samish Initiative, or: How to Find Poop in Water

Karen DuBose, Pollution Identification and Correction Coordinator, Skagit County

Puget Sound Partnership has set a goal of upgrading 10,800 acres of shellfish beds by 2020. Over 4,000 of those acres are in the Samish River watershed. Since 2010, the Clean Samish Initiative partners have been working with farmers and residents of the watershed to find and fix sources of fecal coliform bacteria pollution. The team has used everything from windshield surveys and water quality sampling to sewage sniffing dogs and DNA tracing to identify where the problem is coming from and fix it. They continue to find a wide variety of sources and experiment with new methods of poo detection.

Karen DuBose is Skagit County's Pollution Identification and Correction Coordinator. She has nine years of experience in water quality, pollution source identification, and water resource management in King, Island and Skagit Counties. She has an MS in Water Resource Policy and Management from Oregon State University, and BA in Geography from Western Washington University. In her spare time, she enjoys growing a stellar veggie garden, generally being outdoors, and pretending she knows more about cooking than she actually does.

May 20, 2015 Annual Joint AWRA-WA & Washington Hydrologic Society Meeting

Presentation - Washington State Legislative Update

Jennifer Holderman, Dept. of Ecology

Jennifer will discuss bills introduced and enacted during the 2015 Washington Legislative Session concerning water resource issues. The legislature considered nearly 30 water resources related bills this session. This presentation looks more closely at 20 of these bills, constituting nine subject areas. Topics considered by the legislature included: water banking and other mechanisms for transferring water rights, defining an exception to the water code, the overriding consideration of the public interest, finding solutions for rural water users, artificial storage and recovery, water supply solutions in the Skagit River Basin, and generating revenue for water infrastructure. The legislature also grappled with agency sponsored legislation on the FERC licensing fee and governance structure for water resource work outside of the agency. Jennifer will provide an update on how these bills progressed through the legislative process and how they may impact Water Resources’ program policy at the Department of Ecology.

Jennifer Holderman is a water resource planner with the Department of Ecology in the Water Resources Program. Her work primarily focuses on legislative coordination, rural water supply issues and reclaimed water policy development. She also provides policy support in preparation for on the ground response to drought and is coordinating climate change adaptation efforts for the program. Prior to working at the Department of Ecology, she worked for a watershed council located in Manzanita, OR. Jennifer holds a MS in Water Resources from Oregon State University and a JD from the University of Oregon.

April 30, 2015 Dinner Meeting and CWU Student Chapter Mixer

Presentation - “Imagine Eating on a Treadmill”

Justin Bezold, Yakima Basin Project Manager, Trout Unlimited

Washington’s native salmon and trout species are the product of millions of years of evolution. From the temperate rain-forests of the Olympic Peninsula to the desert grasslands of the Columbia Plateau, salmon and trout in Washington thrived in spite of a landscape changed by glaciers, floods, volcanoes, and drought. However, land- and water-use practices effectively changed the natural hydrograph of many salmon and trout bearing systems. Now, with climate models predicting changes in precipitation types, understanding the role of stream flows on fish and their fitness is more important than ever to make progress on restoring fisheries. In coming years, the line between water resources and fisheries professionals will blur, calling for a better understanding by both groups of the biological impact of our water use decisions.

Justin Bezold, Project Manager for Trout Unlimited’s Washington Water Project (TU-WWP) in the Yakima Basin, joined TU-WWP in 2014. His work uses a variety of tools from economics to water law to fisheries biology to complete water transactions to increase stream flows at times critical for fish and wildlife. His focus is primarily on water rights and water transactions to help recover ESA-listed fish species. However, he also works on fisheries habitat restoration projects, community outreach, and provides water rights expertise on larger scale collaborative projects. Prior to joining TU-WWP, Justin worked for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game where he restored anadromous fish habitat in Salmon, Idaho. Justin brings fisheries degrees from the University of Vermont (B.S.) and University of Georgia (M.S.) and a law degree from Willamette University.

April 1, 2015 Dinner Meeting

Presentation – King County Recycled Water: The Right Water for the Right Use

Jacque Klug, Project Manager for King County's Wastewater Treatment Division

Did you know that King County recycles about 675 million gallons of water each year for non-potable water uses at local businesses and King County facilities? Recycled water is high-quality water that is perfect for irrigation, industrial processes and wetland enhancement. King County is one of several communities in the United States that produces and uses this valuable resource. More and more communities around the world are turning toward recycled water as a solution to water challenges such as drought, climate change, and water quality and habitat impairments. Join us for an evening of discussion on recycled water in our community and dialogue on the how recycled water can fit into the toolbox of addressing water challenges in our state. We’ll learn about King County Recycled Water, new advances in recycled water use around the world, and where recycled water is going in Washington State.

Jacque Klug is a project manager for King County’s Wastewater Treatment Division, supporting customer development, permitting, capital projects, and communication and strategic planning efforts relating to King County’s Recycled Water Program. Jacque has worked in the water field for many years and has experience in policy development, planning and permitting on a variety of water resource issues including water rights, instream flows, watershed planning and salmon recovery. She is a graduate of Duke University and the University of Washington.

February 24, 2015 Dinner Meeting

Presentation – The Department of Ecology Draft Rule for Human Health Criteria

Kelly Susewind, Special Assistant to Director Maia Bellon, WA Department of Ecology

On Jan. 12, 2015, Ecology issued a formal draft rule that updates to the state’s Water Quality Standards for toxics, including an updated fish consumption rate. The draft rule is directly tied to a toxics reduction package Governor Inslee will propose to the 2015 Legislature. The package will address broader pollution challenges that the Clean Water Act alone can’t solve. The proposed package lays the groundwork to better protect Washington’s people, its waters, and its economy. Kelly Susewind will provide an overview of the rule and comment on the strategy of the toxics reduction package during the 2015 legislative session.

Kelly Susewind joined the Department of Ecology 24 years ago after working as a consulting engineer for several years. He entered the agency as a staff engineer and has progressively taken on increasing levels of responsibility. Most recently, he managed the agency’s Water Quality Program before being promoted to his current position as Special Assistant to Director Maia Bellon. He earned a degree in Geological Engineering from Washington State University and holds licenses in civil engineering, geology and hydrogeology.

November 6, 2014 Dinner Meeting

Presentation – Washington State Trust Water Right Program

Kelsey Collins, Statewide Trust Water Coordinator, Washington State Department of Ecology

Beginning in the late 1980’s, the Washington State legislature provided greater flexibility to the state to hold and manage publicly and privately owned water rights through creation of the Trust Water Rights Program. However, only Ecology can hold a water right in trust. Ecology acquires (holds) water rights through donations, leases, purchases, or other voluntarily negotiated means. The only case in which Ecology is required to hold a water right in trust is when a water right holder chooses to donate their water right for instream flow or groundwater preservation. In those cases, only the portion of the right that has been used in the last 5 years may be donated; all other acquisitions result from negotiated agreements with Ecology. The decision to negotiate any such trust water agreement and its provisions is shaped by Ecology’s mission to manage water for the greatest benefit to the public. Managing the Trust Water Right’s Program is about deciding how to best spend the public’s money acquiring water rights and building partnerships to repurpose water for new uses.

Kelsey Collins is the Statewide Trust Water Coordinator for WA Department of Ecology. She has been with Ecology for 12 years; 2 years with the Environmental Assessment Program managing a network of stream gaging stations and 10 years with Water Resources permitting water rights. She wrote a 2007 report to the legislature about solving water issues for cabins and camps in the Yakima Basin. From 2009 to 2013 she managed the Cost Reimbursement Program for central Washington. In early 2014 Kelsey was hired as the Statewide Trust Water Coordinator as well as assisting Bob Barwin with the Water Acquisition Program. In 2016 she will assume the lead responsibility for the Acquisition Program.

September 10, 2014 Dinner Meeting

Dinner Presentation – Puget Sound Energy’s Baker River Project

John Chandler, P.E., Water Resources Technical Lead, Generation Operations, Puget Sound Energy

How are lakes and rivers managed?  This presentation will cover how water management decisions are made at the Baker Project, a two reservoir, 200 MW facility which is operated by Puget Sound Energy and lies within the Skagit River basin.  Taking a holistic view of how to consider several competing objectives are discussed, such as flood control, environmental constraints, recreational opportunities, generating power, providing grid stability, and operating in ways that avoid major damage to the equipment from cavitation and Rheingans phenomenon.  Other topics include placing the Baker Project in the bigger picture of running an entire generation fleet, a high level discussion on implementing Baker’s new FERC license, and an overview of the different internal and external parties associated with managing the lakes.

John Chandler, P.E., is the water manager at Puget Sound Energy for both of the utility’s hydro projects, Baker River and Snoqualmie Falls.  He helps to implement the new FERC licenses at both facilities, assists with operational compliance, and supports dam safety.   John received his B.S. in Civil & Environmental Engineering from the University of Maine at Orono in 2006 and a M.S. focused on Water Resources and Environmental Engineering in 2008.

May 20, 2014 Dinner Meeting

3rd Annual Joint AWRA-WA & Washington Hydrologic Society Meeting - Washington State Legislative Update

Jennifer Holderman, Dept. of Ecology

Jennifer will discuss bills introduced and enacted during the 2014 Washington Legislative Session concerning water resource issues. The legislature considered several issues during this session: local governments participating in water banks, managing the cost of water infrastructure, agency reform, using drones for government surveillance of water use, Whatcom County berry growers, legislative response to Swinomish v DOE and Hirst v Whatcom County, Capital Budget revisions and irrigation districts and hydropower. Jennifer will provide an update on how these bills progressed through the legislative process and how these laws may impact program policy. She will also provide a sneak peak of the 2015 legislative session, specifically strategies concerning rural water supply.

Jennifer Holderman is a water resource planner with the Department of Ecology in the Water Resources Program. Her work primarily focuses on legislative coordination, rural water supply issues and reclaimed water policy development. Prior to working at the Department of Ecology, she worked for a watershed council located in Manzanita, OR. Jennifer holds a MS in Water Resources from Oregon State University and a JD from the University of Oregon.

May 1, 2014 Dinner Meeting

Presentation – Seattle’s Cascade Watersheds Supply System

Brent Lackey, Major Watersheds Strategic Advisor, Seattle Public Utilities, Drinking Water Division

Seattle Public Utilities provides drinking water to more than 1.3 million people in metropolitan King County. Much of the work to make that spectacularly dependable and pure water reach those customers’ taps happens in Seattle’s supply basins-the Tolt River and the Cedar River Watersheds. This talk will focus on a variety of projects and activities aimed at managing the landscape and the aquatic systems that are essential to the high quality drinking water that gets delivered downstream. From large river restoration projects, to major slope stabilization, and from logging road removal to long-term forest biodiversity and complexity enhancements, Seattle Public Utilities has been doing significant ecosystem engineering and enhancement work for more than 15 years now through it Cedar River Habitat Conservation Plan and its Tolt Watershed Management Plan to maintain the critical water supply asset on which so many people depend.

Brent Lackey works for Seattle Public Utilities as Major Watersheds Strategic Advisor. For 13 years he has contributed project management, policy oversight and strategic direction to the management of the ecosystems in Seattle’s two Cascade mountain watersheds-the Cedar River and Tolt River-that provide drinking water supply to 1.3 million people in the greater Seattle area. He formerly spent seven years working for King County Water & Land Resources Division as the Lake Washington Basin Steward. His career in landscape scale watershed management and stream & wetland habitat restoration has focused on bridging the gap between the use of good ecosystem science and effective agency management of utility resources and projects. He holds a Masters degree in public policy and environmental management from the University of Washington, a Bachelor’s degree from UC Santa Barbara, and hails originally from Bishop, California.

March 27, 2014 Dinner Meeting

Presentation – King County’s “In-Lieu Fee” Mitigation Program

Michael Murphy, Land Conservation Program Manager, King County

King County’s "in-lieu fee" mitigation program, the first in lieu fee program in Washington State to be certified under 2008 federal rules. The Mitigation Reserves Program may offer some permit applicants an option to purchase mitigation credits from King County to fully satisfy mitigation obligations associated with projects that result in unavoidable impacts to wetlands, rivers, streams, or buffers. The county then uses collected mitigation fees to implement mitigation projects that make up for impacts to aquatic resources.

Michael Murphy is a Land Conservation Program Manager with the King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks. He manages King County’s fee in-lieu mitigation program, assists with all aspects of the Transfer of Development Rights program, and helps set conservation and acquisition priorities for the Department of Natural Resources and Parks. Prior to his work with land conservation programs, he worked as Environmental Scientist with the county collecting, interpreting, and reporting water quality data and working with lakeside residents to improve their lakes through responsible stewardship. He has also worked in public outreach and education, run environmental programs for inner-city youth, and led crews of local and international youth implementing environmental restoration projects. He graduated from Brown University with a degree in biology. He spends his free time with his family and enjoys sailing, cycling and skiing.

February 27, 2014 Dinner Meeting

Dinner Presentation and Movie Screening Return of the River, a documentary about the Elwha River.

John Gussman, Director and Cinematographer

Jessica Plumb, Producer, Writer, Co-Director

"Return of the River" is a feature documentary that tells the story of the largest dam removal in history, currently unfolding on the Elwha River in Washington State. The film explores an extraordinary community effort to set the river free, and shows an unlikely victory for environmental justice. Told by an ensemble cast of characters, "Return of the River" offers hope amid grim environmental news, chronicling a dramatic success story that has drawn international attention to the Olympic Peninsula. The feature film is scheduled for release in spring 2014. This is an exclusive chance to see excerpts from the finished film and to meet the filmmakers, who have been documenting the Elwha's remarkable journey for four years. For additional information on the project, including how to support this independently produced film, please visit www.elwhafilm.com.

Filmmaker Bios:

John Gussman, Director and Cinematographer - John Gussman was a still photographer specialized in architecture and location work before turning his attention to HD cinematography. Gussman shoots in multiple HD formats; currently the Canon XF300 is his primary camera. He is best known for landscape and time-lapse images. Gussman began documenting the Elwha story consistently in early 2010, after 32 years of hiking, camping, fishing and filming the beautiful Olympic Peninsula. He has long felt a spiritual connection to the Elwha Valley. When dam removal was scheduled, he saw the opportunity to document this once-in-a-lifetime event and decided to focus his creative skills on witnessing the healing of this place and the people who share this land. Seewww.dcproductions.com for more information.

Jessica Plumb, Producer, Writer, Co-Director - Producer and writer Jessica Plumb is a filmmaker focused on the relationship between people and the places they call home. She moved to the Olympic Peninsula a decade ago, after starting her career in Boston and Beijing. Jessica directs a video production company and has produced numerous educational and promotional videos for clients. She has worked on documentary and narrative films screened at festivals in the role of editor, and behind the camera, and has created award-winning short films best described as video poetry. Her video art films have been screened in galleries throughout the United States. Jessica holds a B.A. from Yale University and an interdisciplinary MFA from Goddard College. She also studied documentary film at 911 Media in Seattle and the New School University in New York.

January 30, 2014 WA AWRA/ UW Student Mixer

The Role of Economic Analysis in Water Resource Management, presented by Joseph Cook, PhD - University of Washington

Dr. Joe Cook, a faculty member of the Evans School of Public Affairs at the University of Washington, joined the Evans School faculty in 2007. His research uses tools from economics to inform environmental and health policy, often in economically-developing countries. His focus is primarily on water and sanitation policy, water resources management, stated preference methods, and vaccine policy. Two current research projects study the impact on intra-household time allocation of providing convenient water access in rural Ethiopia and the barriers to the use of water markets in coping with drought in the Yakima basin of Washington state. His talk, "The role of economic analysis in water resource management", will survey some of the ways in which economic logic and tools are used to inform how we allocate and manage scarce water resources. Some of these tools are in wide use while some remain mostly unused in practice. The talk will also discuss an important new proposal for the state - the Yakima Basin Integrated Plan - and how economic analysis is being applied to it.

December 11, 2013 Dinner Meeting, including 2014 Board of Director elections and extended year-end social hour

Dinner Presentation by Brian Walsh.

In 2007, the Puget Sound Partnership was created by the Legislature as the backbone organization that would connect citizens, governments, tribes, scientists and businesses to do three key things no other organization in Washington does: set science-based regional priorities for Puget Sound, accelerate implementation of priority actions; and ensure accountability for results.

Brian Walsh is the Planning Manager for the Partnership. Prior to joining the Partnership in 2013, Brian managed the Program Development and Operations Support Section of the Water Resources Program within the WA Department of Ecology. Among the responsibilities of the section was development of rules for the protection of instream flows, water resource legislation, climate change adaptation, aquifer storage recovery, water acquisition, and technical support for watershed planning. Brian had 25 years experience working within the Department of Ecology on a variety of natural resource policy issues including watershed planning, seawater intrusion, offshore oil and gas development, and enforcement policy. In addition to his work at Ecology, Brian served for 3 years as a policy analyst with the Northwest Power and Conservation Council's Washington State office where he developed staff recommendations for proposed habitat and hatchery projects under the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Program. He also managed the Lead Entity grant program for salmon recovery while employed by the WA Department of Fish and Wildlife. Brian attended Prescott College and graduated with a degree in Environmental Planning from The Evergreen State College.


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