Leading the Stormwater Village at StormCon

StormCon, the nation’s largest stormwater conference, was recently held in Bellevue marking the first time this gathering of national leaders on stormwater has come to the Pacific Northwest. But there is little doubt that this region is a veritable Silicon Valley of green infrastructure solutions to stormwater runoff.

Polluted runoff spilling into a storm drain.

Why does our community invest so much in solving stormwater? Perhaps, it is because our region is famous for rain and we have over 100 years of leadership, pioneering innovation from airplanes to coffee to software. We think it is because stormwater exemplifies the kind of local, global and complex problem that requires creativity and dedication. The simple individual solutions that Stewardship Partners promotes will cascade down into systems that can heal humanity’s broken relationship with nature.

In this spirit, a group of non-profit leaders have recently developed a Puget Sound-wide campaign called City Habitats. Started by Stewardship Partners, The Nature Conservancy of Washington, Washington Environmental Council and the City of Seattle, City Habitats has now engaged over 100 partners from across the region and across all sectors. With significant investments and support from The Boeing Company, this network is accelerating and amplifying the region’s cutting-edge leadership in stormwater and green infrastructure through collaborative partnership and coordination of efforts. We are “connecting the dots” by bringing .com’s, .org’s, .gov’s and .edu’s together to share ideas, identify emerging issues and opportunities and avoid reinventing the wheel.

City Habitats was represented at StormCon 2017 with 10 full exhibition booths, loosely organized as a “Village”. We presented solutions, ideas, projects and programs with 12 of our partners. StormCon had never had non-profits, universities or government-led programs participate in the exhibition hall before and the response was resounding: we need to do this every year!

Stewardship Partners’ leadership of this effort exemplifies our passion for collaboration and innovation, and showed the world a real hope of truly solving the stormwater problem.

 

StormCon Village Participants:
Washington Storwater Center (UW & WSU) | UW Green Futures Lab | RainWise
Evergreen College’s Center of Sustainable Infrastructure | TNC | ILFI | Stewardship Partners
WEC  |  Puget Sound Caucus of Conservation Districts | Salmon-Safe | ECOSS
Friends of the Seattle Waterfront | City Habitats | Earth Corps

Farewell Friends!

Best of luck to our Development Director, Palmira Figueroa! We are sad to see her go, but wish her well in her new development role at Social Justice Fund Northwest, where she gets to pursue her passion for social equity and fairness.

During her three years with Stewardship Partners, Palmira grew the Feast on the Farm dinner beyond its humble beginnings into one of the premier farm-to-table events in the country. But, her impact runs deeper than dollars raised or tickets purchased. Palmira challenged us and brought dimension to our understanding of what the concept “stewardship” means.

Part of her legacy is programs that are beginning to better serve all of Washington’s residents. But more importantly, her wisdom and compassion moved and inspired each of us. Thanks to her example, we will continue to strive to be inclusive, to better listen to all perspectives and to develop solutions that serve all the communities that depend on the land and waters that sustain us. 

 

We also bid a fond farewell to Snoqualmie Stewardship Habitat Restoration Crew member, Gavin Walton as he heads back to his home state of Colorado where he will soon be pursuing his Masters Degree and possibly some international travel.

Gavin’s enthusiastic spirit and on-going desire to learn was appreciated by volunteers and fellow crew members alike. He could always be counted on to add to the spirit and energy of any habitat restoration project that he was involved in.

Palmira and Gavin, we are very grateful for having the opportunity to work with both of you as colleagues and know that you will continue to conduct yourselves as thoughtful stewards of our communities. We look forward to staying in touch and learning about the positive impacts that you will continue to make in our world.

The Stewardship Partners Team

StormCon Connections

Aaron Clark Makes a Connection

StormCon, the nation’s largest stormwater conference was recently held in Bellevue – first time that this gathering of municipal leaders on stormwater have come to the Pacific Northwest. There is little doubt that this region is a veritable Silicon Valley of green infrastructure solutions to stormwater.

Why do we invest so much in solving stormwater? Perhaps, it is because we are already famous for our rain, or perhaps it is our 100 year history of pioneering innovation from airplanes to coffee to software. We think it is because stormwater exemplifies the kind of complex, wicked problem that, once understood, begs creativity and dedication because individual solutions can cascade down into systems that can heal humanity’s broken relationship with nature. Pretty profound stuff.

In this spirit, a group of non-profit leaders have recently developed a Puget Sound-wide campaign called City Habitats. Started by Stewardship Partners, The Nature Conservancy of Washington, Washington Environmental Council and the City of Seattle, City Habitats has now engaged over 100 partners from across the region and across all sectors. With significant investments and support from The Boeing Company, this network is accelerating and amplifying the region’s cutting-edge leadership in stormwater and green infrastructure through collaborative partnership and coordination of efforts. We are “connecting the dots” by bringing .com’s, .org’s, .gov’s and .edu’s together to share ideas, identify emerging issues and opportunities and avoid reinventing the wheel.

City Habitats was represented at StormCon 2017 with 10 full exhibition booths, loosely organized as a “Village”. We presented solutions, ideas, projects and programs from 13 of our partners. StormCon had never had non-profits, universities or government-led programs participate in the exhibition hall before and the response was resounding: we need to do this every year!

Our participants included: from the .edu, Washington Stormwater Center (WSU and UW-led), UW Green Futures Lab and Evergreen College’s Center of Sustainable Infrastructure to the .gov, RainWise program (Seattle and King County-led) and the Puget Sound Caucus of Conservation Districts, to .org’s TNC, ILFI, Stewardship Partners, Salmon-Safe, ECOSS, Friends of Waterfront Seattle, City Habitats, and Earth Corps, City Habitats is demonstrating that collaboration and innovation are critical to the bold vision of actually solving stormwater.

Salmon-Safe Gelato Time!

Summer means hot days, getting outside and for the second year in a row it means Salmon-Safe Gelatiamo gelato! There are cherry varieties – cherry compote, cherries and cream and a cherry sorbet swirled with sweet cream. Peach sorbet is here and there will be more, once those recipes are perfected.

Gelatiamo owner, Maria Coassin has been crafting her recipes with Salmon-Safe certified Fresh Breeze Dairy of Lynden, WA for many years. Last year the commitment to high-quality products that improve water-quality was expanded by making these varieties with fruit from Salmon-Safe Tonnemaker Farms of Royal City, WA. Look for Gelatimo’s Salmon-Safe featured flavors in its downtown Seattle store and at select retail locations. So good!

Growing Together: Adopt-a-Buffer Gains Support from Campbell Global

Restoring habitat along the Snoqualmie River is hard work that can be bolstered by a group effort. Thanks to Valley landowners and local businesses, collaboration is becoming much easier through Stewardship Partners’ Adopt-a-Buffer program.

Campbell Global, a Portland-based sustainable timber company that also works in the Snoqualmie Valley, is the latest company to adopt a buffer. The firm was founded in 1981 as The Campbell Group and they bring over three decades of experience and industry knowledge to timberland investment management and value creation.

As the new owner and operator of the 100,000 acre Snoqualmie Forest, Campbell Global is also the largest landowner in the Snoqualmie Valley. This is significant as the watershed supports some of the largest runs of wild Coho in Puget Sound, due in part to an intricate network of beaver ponds in the tributaries that flow through the Snoqualmie Forest. Griffin Creek, one of these tributaries, winds through Full Circle Farm on its way to the Snoqualmie River. Full Circle Farm, a Salmon-Safe certified farm that runs the largest Community Supported Agriculture program in the Northwest, is the site of Campbell Global’s adopted buffer.

We have been actively engaged in restoration at Full Circle Farm since 2004 and are proud of the example it sets for how we can all grow together for a sustainable Snoqualmie Valley and Puget Sound. Campbell Global is dedicated to practices that will protect the watershed as they support our efforts downriver from the Snoqualmie Forest.

Their dedication to the river’s health was apparent on October 6th, when a team of Campbell Global employees spent hours removing invasive blackberry in preparation for planting next spring. This work contributed to the health of “their” buffer that will provide a habitat corridor for wildlife, shade for salmon and protection against winter floods. We are proud of this new partnership that plays a key role in enhancing the health of the Snoqualmie River and all of its inhabitants.

Campbell Global joins the ranks of the Boeing CompanyMicrosoftDuke’s Chowder HouseStarbucks Partners for SustainabilityPatagonia, the Caring Club and multiple agricultural landowners in the Adopt-a-Buffer program. You too can join them by adopting a buffer today.

For more information about Adopt-a-Buffer, please contact Chris LaPointe at cl@stewardshippartners.org.