The Great Lakes hold a full 20% of the world's fresh water. It's an incredible resource, and an incredible responsibility. As residents of the Lake States, it's up to us to care for this amazing resource. Out West, water is managed through Water Rights law. How do we manage our own abundance of fresh water, and what are the implications of our actions and decision for our region and beyond? What are the various ways we may choose to steward this precious natural resource into the future? We will explore this topic from several perspectives with the help of our guest presenters. Join Scott Piggott of the Michigan Farm Bureau; Ellen Kohler of the Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay; and Lisa Brush, of The Stewardship Network, to learn more about this important topic in the next Stewardship Network webcast!
Scott Piggott - Scott was hired by Michigan Farm Bureau in 2000, and became manager of the Agricultural Ecology Department in 2002. As manager, his responsibilities include environmental issues, Right to Farm, natural resources, air quality, water quality and water quantity. Scott currently serves on over 20 committees and boards, including co-chair of the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program, member of the Groundwater Conservation Advisory Council, Pathogen Waterfellows, Phosphorus Advisory Committee, Michigan Technical Committee, and GAAMP Review Committees. Scott performed his undergraduate and graduate work in Biosystems Engineering at Michigan State University. Scott lives and works on his family's farm near Fowler, Michigan. He and his wife Donna have four children: Danielle, Kaitlin, Anthony and Andrew.
Ellen Kohler - Ellen Kohler is Attorney and Policy Specialist with the Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay. She has practiced law for 18 years, specializing in natural resources, environmental and land use law. She holds a Master's degree from the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and Environment, and a law degree from the University of Colorado. She was a trial attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice on wildlife matters before moving to northern Michigan and establishing a private practice. She has worked on farmland protection, Native American fishing issues, wetland protection, and public involvement in state-level environmental decisionmaking. Ellen is the author of A Citizen's Guide to Water Quality Permitting: Understanding the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Program and its Role in Michigan, co-author of What is a Taking? Exploring the Boundary Between Public Interest and Private Property, and author of the MSU Law Review article "Ripples in the Water: Judicial, Executive, and Legislative Developments Impacting Water Management in Michigan." She has served on the Peninsula Township Planning Commission and currently serves on the Board of Governors for the Great Lakes Leadership Academy. Her husband, Matt, is an engineer now teaching high school science. They have a daughter, Anna, and son, Peter, and several animals.
Lisa Brush - Lisa is the Executive Director of The Stewardship Network. Lisa has been leading collaborative conservation initiatives in the nonprofit environmental sector for over two decades. In her role as co-founder and Executive Director of The Stewardship Network she has engaged thousands of professionals and volunteers in identifying community and conservation needs of the 21st century and determining strategic support The Network can provide. She has managed and overseen grant projects from federal and state agencies, as well as family and private foundations. She has been involved in all aspects of organizational management including foundation/agency relationships, grant based project funding, budget tracking, contract negotiation, implementation, accountability, project reporting and staff and board development. Lisa has facilitated strategic planning sessions, focus groups, citizen task forces, community visioning sessions, and public involvement and feedback meetings with groups ranging in size from four to four hundred. Lisa emphasizes tried and true in-person methods of bringing people together augmented by the use of cutting edge online technology. Lisa serves on numerous boards of directors, has a BA in Science in Society from Wesleyan University, an MS from University of Michigan's School of Natural Resources and Environment, and is a graduate of Michigan State University's Great Lakes Leadership Academy.