Feeling Inspired After 2024 Summit

Thank you to all who attended the Green Infrastructure Summit of the Salish Sea at Cascadia College on Friday, March 29, 2024! This year, the theme of the Summit was Shaping Infrastructure through Collective History, Learnings, and Big Ideas. We have historic work ahead of us if we want to see change. This year included discussions on long-term maintenance, monitoring, indigenous perspectives and approaches, and addressing 6PPD-quinone.

We saw so much engagement and networking between attendees, excitement for future research and partnerships, and a real commitment to increasing the green job workforce. We hope you all went back into the world feeling inspired to continue the critical work that you do!

Many thanks to our wonderful speakers, host committee, sponsors, advisory committee, Cascadia Consulting, and everyone who was able to attend. We also want to give a big shout out to host committee member, Jesse Williams from Jacobs, who provided the content for the “Charting the Waves of Time” timeline, as well as to all of you who provided additional events and reflections.

2023 Highlights

As 2023 comes to a close and we reflect on the year behind us, we are so grateful for the opportunity to continue creating meaningful impacts in the Puget Sound area, the traditional lands of the Salish people. We were able to accomplish so much this year with the help and support of our communities. Stewardship Partners led the 8th Annual Green Infrastructure Summit of the Salish Sea, launched the Adopt-a-Downspout program in Seattle, began the biggest rain garden installation in the Snoqualmie Valley, and led volunteers in restoration efforts. These accomplishments, among many other green initiatives, have in part been made possible by people like you. Thank you for your support!

The Snoqualmie Stewardship Restoration Team enjoyed working with a full crew again starting in April. Among their many projects, this year was the biggest rain garden they’ve installed to date at Griffin Creek Farm in Carnation. The 3,000-square-foot rain garden will manage stormwater and water runoff from the farm’s vegetable processing plant. This was the first rain garden we have installed at a Salmon-Safe certified farm, but certainly not the last. We are looking forward to a new series of rain gardens going in at Carnation Farms next year.

Researchers have determined that the chemical 6PPD-quinone in tires causes pre spawning mortality in coho salmon in urban streams. Capturing stormwater and using green infrastructure has been proven to remove this chemical. Stewardship Partners has installed four aboveground stormwater biofilter boxes on two downspouts from the I-5 ship canal bridge to treat 1 million gallons of runoff. The goal of this pilot project is to monitor the results of treatment and also determine feasibility and assess scalability and replicability. Thank you to Boeing, The Rose Foundation, WSDOT and TNC for supporting this project.

Feast on the Farm is always a highlight of our year. This year at Griffin Creek Farm the weather was gorgeous, the food was delicious, and the company was superb. We are deeply grateful for the generosity of our donors, attendees, and volunteers. We hosted 125 people at the farm and raised $65,000. This goes directly towards supporting salmon habitat restoration in the Snoqualmie Valley and rain garden installations.

We were saddened by the passing of a beloved partner and pillar of the Seattle community, Bill Ranniger. Bill was a dedicated steward of the environment, committed to sustainably sourced seafood and salmon recovery. Chef Bill and Duke’s Seafood have been longtime sponsors of the Adopt-a-Buffer program. This year, with 20 staff members from Duke’s, we rededicated “Duke’s Point” to “Chef Bill’s Point” in his memory. Next year, in April, for an Earth Month Celebration, we are planning a sign dedication in his honor. We are inspired by stewardship partners like Chef Bill!

The mission of Stewardship Partners is about bringing communities together so that we can all be better stewards of the land and sea we live, work, and play on. Important parts of this vision are access and a sense of belonging. When people understand the role they can play and feel connected to their community, positive change happens. We wouldn’t be able to continue this work without support from folks like you. We invite you to consider Stewardship Partners in your annual giving this year.  

Make Your Giving Tuesday Gift Today

GivingTuesday is a global day of generosity that takes place TODAY! GivingTuesday was created in 2012 as a simple idea: a day that encourages people to do good. Over the past ten years, this idea has grown into a global movement that inspires hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity.

When you make a gift on Giving Tuesday, you’re supporting more than Stewardship Partners; you’re also supporting the wildlife, people, and natural splendor of our Puget Sound home. Your donation attests to the importance of clean water, healthy salmon and wildlife habitats, sustainable agriculture, healthy communities, and overall stewardship of our shared environment. We hope you will consider supporting us!

Thank You for Your Support All Year Long

Just like that, we come to the close of another year. As we reflect, our team is proud of our solutions-driven work, facilitating partnerships and creating measurable positive impacts on the environment and neighborhoods across the region.

2023 represented a bit of a “return to normal” for us. In March, we held the 8th annual Green Infrastructure Summit of the Salish Sea, back in person for the first time since 2019. In September, our Feast on the Farm fundraiser returned in person for the second time, and we were so fulfilled getting to see our friends and supporters out on the farm, enjoying the scenic beauty. We also got our hands dirty restoring the Snoqualmie Valley, and in October, we brought out our partners from Duke’s Seafood for our first restoration event with that group since 2018. We loved seeing all of you in person more, and what a great year it was!

Stewardship Partners would not be here without you. Thank you for being dedicated to our team and our mission and loving this special place we call home. Please consider Stewardship Partners in your annual giving this year.

Goodbye Chef Bill

It’s with a heavy heart that we share the sad news that our good friend and stewardship partner Bill Ranniger passed away recently after a battle with cancer.  Bill was the Executive Chef at Duke’s Seafood and had a profound love for the Northwest, the environment, salmon, music, and community. His passion for food and wine ran deep, as did his belief in the importance of sourcing from local farms and selecting wild, natural and sustainable seafood.

Bill was a smart, caring, and loving person that would share his big smile and positive energy with everyone around. Duke’s was one of the first businesses to Adopt-a-Buffer in the Snoqualmie Valley, back in 2016.  He loved planting trees, removing blackberry bushes, and sharing his thoughts. “It’s a great day for saving a salmon and making some oxygen!” he once told me.  We will miss you Bill.

Executive Director, David Burger

Bill’s family requests that memorial gifts be designated to the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center for cancer research.

Thank You Olivia!

At the end of May we are saying bye to our wonderful intern, Olivia Schwartz. Olivia joined Stewardship Partners in September and was quickly involved in Feast on the Farm, a big event for a newcomer! Since starting she has worked with the whole staff on projects from Adopt-a-Buffer to Salmon-Safe to Sound Impacts and did an amazing job at the Green Infrastructure Summit of the Salish Sea. Throughout her internship she demonstrated all the values of a Stewardship Partner and put up with the sometimes hectic Feast and Summit with a great attitude. We wish her the best as she graduates from UW and moves on to new opportunities. Thank you Olivia!  

The 8th Annual Green Infrastructure Summit: An Amazing Convergence of Like Minds and Hearts

It seems like absence really does make the heart grow fonder. After 3 years of virtual Summits, on March 17th, we were finally able to gather about 230 leaders of the green infrastructure movement together in person (with a couple dozen more joining us online). It was great to see everyone (and the sunshine didn’t hurt either)! Faces and perspectives new and old gathered at Cascadia College in Bothell for the 8th annual Green Infrastructure Summit of the Salish Sea. The host committee’s chosen theme of “money as medicine, historic investments are a historic opportunity for healing*”, helped us all consider our work with shared goals of healing harms, environmental, social, and otherwise.

Over the course of 8 summits in 8 years, a lot has happened. But one theme has persisted throughout: How can we repair environmental damage in a way that heals our social wounds as well? Or put in the terms that Host committee member Bridget Ray spoke, the people here belong to this land, are of this land, not the other way around, and when we work to heal and care for one, we must keep that relationship in mind. This is happening. Investments in green infrastructure are taking community-identified goals and needs into account. Some of those goals relate to workforce and career pathways. Others talked about the very rich complexity of community-centered strategies. Green infrastructure is increasingly helping create accessible outdoor spaces in the form of stormwater parks.

Most of the sessions (all the ones in the auditorium) were recorded and will remain available for you to watch and share with your colleagues on the summit webpage (along with content from past summits).

“While I didn’t know it at the time, this summit was my last in my current role. I couldn’t have asked for a more rewarding send off than that. I am profoundly grateful for this community, your vision, your love for this land and all the people that belong to it.” -A note from Aaron Clark

*Acknowledgement to Edgar Villanueva who popularized the concept ‘money as medicine’ in his important book, Decolonizing Wealth.

Welcoming New Crew Members!

Stewardship Partners is thrilled to welcome Kiersten and Lauren to the team. They joined us in early April as part of our Snoqualmie Stewardship Habitat Restoration crew. They jumped right into helping us install and plant the Carnation Elementary School rain garden (the second one there) and the Griffin Creek Farm rain garden. We look forward to having a full crew in the Snoqualmie once again!

Buy Summit Tickets Now!

At the 2023 Green Infrastructure Summit of the Salish Sea we are taking the historic opportunity to look at the way infrastructure investments have been done to date, and inform the ways that we want them done now. This year’s theme is: Money as Medicine* – Historic investments are an historic opportunity for healing that we can’t afford to miss. There will be presentations and discussions on funding, workforce and career pathways, regional coordination, research, modeling, design and planning at watershed scales, and food systems too. We’ll have opportunities to walk outside, share food and drinks together, talk in the hallways, and yes, we will talk about tires too!

On behalf of an incredible host committee and Stewardship Partners, please join us.

What: The 8th annual Green Infrastructure Summit of the Salish Sea
Where: Mobius Hall, Cascadia College, Bothell, WA (with an online livestreaming option for the larger sessions)
When: March 17, 2023 (approx. 8:30 AM-4:30 PM)
Register Now: Eventbrite

*Acknowledgement to Edgar Villanueva who popularized the concept ‘money as medicine’ in his important book, Decolonizing Wealth.