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WILDFIRE:
Weather, Water, Weeds, Wildlife

Thurs. Sept. 16th, 2021 | 9am-1pm
Thurs. Sept. 30th, 2021 | 9am-1pm
Thurs. Oct. 14th, 2021 | 2pm-5:30pm
Online via Zoom

Join us as we seek to better understand wildfire effects on communities and the health of our watersheds! Expert panelists will share recent education efforts, guidelines, and research on the physical, cultural and ecological conditions related to increasing frequency and scale of wildfires in our region.

Since our symposia after the Griffith Park Fire in 2007 and after the Station Fire in 2009, Council for Watershed Health (CWH) has sought to continue convenings around local fire preparedness, defensible space, environmental impacts, and the increasing frequency of wildfires in our region. It is our goal to contribute to a shared understanding amongst stakeholders on the watershed issues of the day, gather lessons learned and disseminate best practices and strategies for healthier watersheds.

Each of the three webinars will consist of short presentations and moderated panel discussions by leading experts in Wildland Fire Research, Land Management, Air Quality, Water Quality, Flood Control, Weeds and Wildlife, Land Use Planning, and Utility Services.

With this Symposium, we will:

  • Examine agency/utility wildfire safety, mitigation measures and resiliency planning for future fire weather 

  • Learn about research focused on wildfire effects on water quality (sediment, contaminants) and water supply in our region and how we can improve our practices

  • Discuss how forests, shrublands and rivers are recovering or being impacted by invasive plants and biodiversity loss

  • Understand how state and local agencies are preparing and responding to increased threat of wildfire 


Who will attend?
Planning and Public Works Professionals, Water Resources Professionals, Land Managers Public Health Professionals, Local Business Leaders, Civil Engineers, Regulators, Land Managers, Researchers, Education and Extension Specialists, Public Health Professionals, Developers, Landscape Architects, Community Based Organizations, Academics, Students, and any and all other interested parties.

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THANK YOU TO OUR PARTNERS & SPONSORS

Our sponsor levels are named after wildflowers that grow abundantly following a fire!

SYMPOSIUM PARTNERS

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FIRE POPPY

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SCARLET LARKSPUR

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For inquiries, please contact Elise Eberhard at eeberhard@watershedhealth.org.

Featured Speakers

DAY 1 | SEPTEMBER 16 

JESSICA MORSE

Deputy Secretary for Forest and Wildfire Resilience

C.A. Natural Resources Agency

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DAY 3 | OCTOBER 14 

HILDA SOLIS

Supervisor, 1st District

Los Angeles County Board

of Supervisors

DAY 3 | OCTOBER 14 

HENRY STERN

Senator, 27th Senate District

California State Senate

 

Symposium Agenda

DAY 1 | SEPTEMBER 16TH | 9AM-1PM - Click for the Full Program
 

  • WELCOME

  • KEYNOTE ADDRESS - Jessica Morse, Deputy Secretary for Forest and Wildfire Resilience, California Natural Resources Agency

  • PANEL 1 PRESENTATIONS

    • Moderator - Marilyn N. Raphael, Ph.D, Director, Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, University of California, Los Angeles

    • Impact of Climate Change on Fire Weather in California - Rong Fu, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, University of California Los Angeles

    • How Climate and Weather Affect Fire Season (Length and Intensity) - Tom Rolinski, Fire Scientist, Southern California Edison

    • Predicting Fire Activity Based on Both Biophysical and Human Development Patterns -  Max Moritz, Ph.D., Cooperative Extension Wildfire Specialist, Bren School of Environmental Science and Management, University of California Santa Barbara

    • Impact of Fire on Ecosystem Function and Biodiversity in Southern CaliforniaWallace M. Meyer III, Ph.D., Director, Robert J. Bernard Field Station, Claremont Colleges, and Associate Professor of Biology, Pomona College

  • PANEL 1 DISCUSSION AND Q&A

  • PANEL 2 PRESENTATIONS

    • Moderator - Sabrina Drill, Ph.D., Natural Resources Advisor - Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources

    • Impacts of Wildfires on Water Quality - A L.A. Region Case Study - Dawn Petschauer, Senior Water Biologist, City of Los Angeles, Watershed Protection Division ;  Matt Rich, Principal Program Manager, Wood Environment and Infrastructure Solutions, Inc.; Brianna Datti, Lead Engineer, Water Quality Science and Regulations, Craftwater Engineering

    • Effects of Catastrophic Fire on Soil - Anthony (Toby) O'Geen, Ph.D., Professor and Soil Resource Specialist in Cooperative Extension, Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, University of California Davis

    • Post-Wildfire Debris Flow Mitigation Measures - Sterling Klippel, P.E., Principal Engineer, Los Angeles County Public Works

    • California After Fire in California Toolkit - Jeremy Lancaster, P.G., C.E.G., Regional Geologic and Landslides Mapping Program Manager, California Geological Survey

    • Wildfires and Air Quality - Scott A. Epstein, Ph.D. Program Supervisor, Air Quality Assessment Planning, Rule Development, and Area Sources South Coast Air Quality Management District

    • Post-fire Food Safety - Julia Van Soelen Kim, M.P.H., Food Systems Advisor, Cooperative Extension, University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources

  • PANEL 2 DISCUSSION AND Q&A

  • CLOSING

  • LUNCHTIME POSTER SESSION AND Q&A - Click for Poster Abstracts

    • ​Modeling the Under-Protection of Human Development From Post-Fire Floods and Debris Flows - Ariane Jong-Levinger, Ph.D. Student in Civil & Environmental Engineering, University of California, Irvine

    • Potential of Green Infrastructure to Mitigate Water Quality Impact of Wildfire - Onja Davidson Raoelison, University of California, Los Angeles

    • Resilient Watersheds and Fire Management - Diana (dee-ah-nah) Voss-Gonzalez, Local Government Commission

    • Learning to Live with Fire - Jeremy Klemic, SWA Group

Day 2 | September 30th | 9AM-1PM - Click for the Full Program

  • WELCOME

  • PANEL 1 PRESENTATIONS

    • Moderator - Sabrina Drill, Ph.D., Natural Resources Advisor - Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources

    • Some Ruminations on Fire Trends in CaliforniaHugh Safford, Ph.D., Regional Ecologist, USDA-Forest Service’s Pacific Southwest Region

    • Fire-driven Vegetation Type Conversion in Southern California - Alexandra Syphard, Ph.D, Senior Research Scientist, Conservation Biology Institute

    • Conservation and Community Safety in a Southern California Wildfire Hotspot - Marti Witter, Ph.D., Fire Ecologist, National Park Service - Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

    • The Weed Crew: A Partnership Between California Botanic Garden and the Angeles National Forest for Invasive Plant Control - Rachel Wing, Field Crew Administrative Lead, California Botanic Garden  

    • Weed Management and WildfireChris McDonald, Ph.D., Inland and Desert Natural Resources Advisor - U.C. Cooperative Extension, University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources

  • PANEL 1 DISCUSSION AND Q&A

  • PANEL 2 PRESENTATIONS

    • Moderator - Travis Longcore, Ph.D., Associate Adjunct Professor, Institute of the Environment and Sustainability - University of California Los Angeles

    • Major Wildfire Issues for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife - Ed Pert, Ph.D., Regional Manager - South Coast Region, California Department of Fish and Wildlife

    • Bobcat Fire 2020 Impacts and Emergency Salvage - Carlton Rochester, Ecologist, Western Ecological Research Center, U.S. Geological Survey

    • Monitoring Oak Woodland Wildlife Communities Following the Mendocino Complex Fire Kendall Calhoun, Ph.D. Student, Department of Environmental Science, Policy, & Management, University of California Berkeley

    • Connecting Wildlands, Wildlife, and Communities: Planning for Wildfire and Climate Resilience in Southern California - Megan Jennings, Ph.D., Research Ecologist and Adjunct Professor, Conservation Ecology Lab - San Diego State University

    • Connectivity Under Fire: Assessing the Impacts of Wildfire and Climate Change on Southern California LandscapesErin Conlisk, Ph.D., Quantitative Ecologist, Point Blue Conservation Science

  • PANEL 2 DISCUSSION AND Q&A

  • CLOSING

  • LUNCHTIME POSTER SESSION AND Q&A 

    • ​Planting a Legacy: Preventing the Next Woolsey Fire - Sarah Kevorkian, Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy Regional Forest and Fire Capacity Project Manager, Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority

    • The Edge of Paradise: Landscape Strategies for Living with Wildfire - Alison Ecker, Planner & Designer, SWA Group

    • Using GIS, Machine Learning, High-Resolution Aerial Imagery, and Non-governmental Organization (NGO) and Open Natural Resources Data to Map Invasive Species and Develop Climate-Adapted Ecological Plant Palettes for Los Angeles, CA - Peggy H Nguyen, M.S., Environmental Science, Policy and Management; M.Ed.; Cert. Restoration Ecology, D.Env. Candidate, UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, Environmental Supervisor, City of Los Angeles, LA Sanitation and Environment

    • Plant Health Assessments and Species Recognition using Drone Technology and Machine Learning - Kelsey Warkentin, GIS Analyst, HANA Resources Inc.

    • Built to Burn: California’s Wildlands Developments Are Playing With Fire - Tiffany Yap, Senior Scientist, Urban Wildlands, Center for Biological Diversity

    • Community Supported Grazing Program: An Initiative of the Ojai Valley Fire Safe Council - Michael Leicht, Founder, Ventura Brush Goats LLC

Day 3 | October 14th | 2PM-5:30PM - Click for the Full Program

  • WELCOME FROM SPECIAL GUEST

  • PANEL 1 PRESENTATIONS

    • Moderator - Clark Stevens, Executive Officer, Resource Conservation District of the Santa Monica Mountains

    • CAL FIRE's Role in Wildfire Preparedness - David Haas, Forester, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection

    • Early Action Fire Resiliency Projects and the Regional Forest and Fire Capacity Program - Rorie Skei, Chief Deputy Director, Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy

    • Collaborating to Improve Community Defensible Space - Ron Durbin, Chief of the Forestry Division, Los Angeles County Fire Department

    • Public and Private Partnerships for Wildfire Resilience - Dania Gutierrez, Southern California Program Manager, National Forest Foundation

    • Impacts of Global Climate Change on National Forests - Jerry Perez, Forest Supervisor, USDA Forest Service - Angeles National Forest
    • Land Use and Wildfire: Rebuilding trends and recommendations for new developments - Van Butsic, Ph.D., Cooperative Extension Specialist in Land Use, University of California Berkeley

  • PANEL 1 DISCUSSION AND Q&A

  • PANEL 2 PRESENTATIONS

    • Moderator - Michele Romolini, Ph.D., Managing Director, Center for Urban Resilience - Loyola Marymount University

    • ​Wildfire Project Management - Rachel Lupo, Senior Manager at Southern California Edison (SCE) Wildfire Program - Project Management and Execution

    • Lessons Learned from Wildfire and Building a More Resilient Water System - David W. Pedersen, P.E., General Manager, Las Virgenes MWD

    • Leveraging the Green Building Community to Reduce Fire Risk - Ben Stapleton, Executive Director, U.S. Green Building Council - Los Angeles

    • Identifying Community Vulnerabilities to Wildfire Through A Home Evaluation Program - Antoine Kunsch, Community Resilience Coordinator, Resource Conservation District of the Santa Monica Mountains

    • Preparing Communities for Wildfire Resilience - Sabrina Drill, Ph.D., Natural Resources Advisor - Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources

    • Shared Stewardship: Working collaboratively to improve forest health and resiliency across landscapes - Fabian Garcia, Partnership Coordinator, USDA Forest Service - Angeles National Forest and San Gabriel Mountains National Monument

  • PANEL 2 DISCUSSION AND Q&A

  • CLOSING