Foundation News

Find out what the Water Education Foundation is up to with announcements about upcoming events, tours, new Western Water articles on key water topics and more! 

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Last Chance To Register For Water 101 Workshop Next Week In Sacramento
Feb. 20th workshop includes optional one-day tour the next day

There’s just one week left until our Water 101 workshop and optional tour! Register today for this once-a-year opportunity!

Attendees at the Feb. 20 workshop will hear from a variety of experts about important and current issues in California water management and policy, including the Delta, sustainable groundwater management, Gov. Newsom’s draft Water Resilience Portfolio, impacts to water resources from climate change and more.


New Experience Announced for Lower Colorado River Tour: Topock Gorge Boat Trip
Explore Natural Wonders and Ecological Challenges Firsthand March 11-13

For the first time, participants on the Foundation’s Lower Colorado River Tour will enjoy a scenic journey on the river through portions of the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge, including Topock Gorge and the Havasu Wilderness Area.

Seating is limited for the March 11-13 tour, so register here to ensure your spot!

Our annual Lower Colorado River tour explores the critical role the river’s water plays in the three Lower Basin states of Nevada, Arizona and California, and how it helps to sustain their cities, farms and wildlife areas.


Latest Western Water Article Explores Plan to Bring Climate Resilience to California Water With Nancy Vogel
Former journalist and veteran water communicator explains how portfolio came together and why it should matter to average Californians

Shortly after Gov. Gavin Newsom called on state agencies to deliver a Water Resilience Portfolio to meet California’s urgent challenges — from unsafe drinking water and climate change risks to severely depleted groundwater aquifers and declining native fish populations — he appointed Nancy Vogel, a former journalist and veteran water communicator, to pull it together.

In an interview with Western Water, Vogel explains how the draft portfolio released Jan. 3 came together, its expected role in helping to guide policy and investment decisions related to climate and water resilience — and why the portfolio should matter to average Californians.


Roster of Speakers, Draft Agenda Unveiled for Feb. 20 Water 101 Workshop & Next Day Tour
Just added: Optional screening of award-winning documentary 'The Sacramento: At Current Speed'

Learn from top experts at our annual Water 101 Workshop about the history, hydrology and law behind California water as well as hot topics such as the Delta, disadvantaged communities, the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act and climate change’s impacts to water resources.

This once-a-year workshop on Feb. 20 in Sacramento will include speakers such as:

Press release

Former California Natural Resources Secretary Mike Chrisman Elected Board President of Water Education Foundation
Celeste Cantú, former Reclamation Commissioner Bob Johnson hold key board posts; ACWA’s Dave Eggerton among new board members joining preeminent nonprofit focused on water education

Mike Chrisman, the new president of the Water Education Foundation’s board of directors, with Executive Director Jenn Bowles at the Foundation's 2018 Water Summit in Sacramento.SACRAMENTO, Calif. _ Mike Chrisman, who served as California natural resources secretary for seven years under former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, was elected president of the Water Education Foundation’s board of directors. He follows in the footsteps of his father, Ira “Jack” Chrisman, who was the Foundation’s founding president in 1977.

“The Foundation is near and dear to my heart,” said Chrisman, who runs his family’s ranching and farming business in Tulare County. “My father and I both viewed his dedication to the Foundation as a true personal legacy and I’m proud to follow in his footsteps as board president.”


Water 101 Workshop + Tour Quickly Approaching, Reserve Your Seat Today
Join us Feb. 20 & 21 in Sacramento to brush up or get a primer on California water basics

Our annual Water 101 workshop, set for Feb. 20 at McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, is just three weeks away. This popular event offers attendees the chance to hear from experts on the basics of California water law, policy, hydrology and geography.

In addition to the workshop, attendees can also opt to join the second-day tour (Feb. 21) that will showcase innovative water projects and partnerships in the Sacramento region.

Scheduled tour stops & topics include:


2020 Water Leaders Class Examines Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources
Up-and-coming water professionals chosen for highly competitive program

Twenty-three early to mid-career water professionals from across California have been chosen for the 2019 William R. Gianelli Water Leaders Class, the Water Education Foundation’s highly competitive and respected career development program.

The class will spend the year examining how water management can respond to climate change in California and offer policy recommendations for adapting a water system built to collect snowmelt to one that can respond to more rain and longer droughts that result from a changing climate.


Take the Pulse of the ‘Lifeline of the Southwest’ on the Lower Colorado River Tour
Join us March 11-13 to explore how some farming regions may be affected by water delivery cuts

As our Lower Colorado River Tour weaves its way downstream from Hoover Dam March 11-13, participants will learn about the important role the river’s water plays in the three Lower Basin states of Nevada, Arizona and California, and how it helps to sustain their cities, wildlife areas and farms. 

Nearly 5.5 million acres of farmland in the river’s basin rely on the ‘lifeline of the Southwest’ to grow a wide variety of crops. 


Sustainable Groundwater Management Act & Hot Topics in California Water Explained at Water 101 Workshop
Go beyond the headlines & learn from leading experts at Feb. 20 event in Sacramento

Attendees at the 2019 Water 101 workshopWhat is groundwater, and how is it managed in California?

Until recently groundwater, the water stored within the Earth in the spaces between sand, soils and fractured rock, was not routinely regulated in California. This changed in 2014 when the state Legislature passed the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) as a framework for local and regional agencies to develop and implement sustainable groundwater management plans. The Jan. 31 deadline is fast-approaching for groundwater managers in California’s critically overdrafted basins to submit long-term plans to the state for review.


Get a ‘Hard Hat’ Tour of Hoover Dam and Visit Lake Mead on Lower Colorado River Tour
Experts offer updates on latest reservoir conditions and forecasts during March 11-13 tour; Early bird prices end soon

Go deep inside Hoover Dam, one of the nation’s most iconic structures, during a special “hard hat” tour as you learn about one of the nation’s largest and most managed rivers during our Lower Colorado River Tour March 11-13.

You’ll pass through elevators and doors that are closed to the public as Bureau of Reclamation managers give you an inside look at the dam’s operations. Highlights include walking inside the 2,080-megawatt hydropower plant, traversing interior service passages and inspection tunnels, and seeing architectural designs of a past era. Afterward, you will have an opportunity to explore the expanded visitor center and walk the top of the dam for an unforgettable view before getting the latest hydrology update on Lake Mead’s levels and operations.


Foundation Journalism Team Will Keep You Informed On Water Issues in California and the West
Western Water news publishes original articles and Aquafornia keeps you abreast of daily news

2020 will be a busy year for water resource issues in California and the West, and the Water Education Foundation’s team of veteran journalists will stay on top of the stories through our Western Water online news and our daily Aquafornia news aggregation.

We’re already planning a full slate of articles for Western Water news for 2020, a year that is likely to bring noteworthy developments for water resources in California and the West — from groundwater sustainability plans, to climate change preparations to addressing demand and supply imbalances on the Colorado River. We’ll be looking at stories that explore these and other issues this year. You can sign up here to be alerted when new articles are published.


Water 101 Workshop and Tour Offer Opportunity to Deepen Understanding of California Water
Workshop (Feb. 20) and optional tour (Feb. 21) to cover California water basics & beyond

Attendees at the 2019 Water 101 workshopCurious about water rights in California? Want to know more about how water is managed in the state, or learn about the State Water Project, Central Valley Project or other water infrastructure?

Sign up for our Water 101 workshop on Feb. 20 to hear from experts on these topics and more. Then join us on Feb. 21 for an optional tour that will get you up close with innovative water partnerships, projects and programs that serve as models statewide.

Announcement Jennifer Bowles

Ringing in 2020 With Exciting New Efforts and Projects at the Water Education Foundation
Read about new tours and other upcoming changes in Executive Director's letter

Happy New Year to all the friends, supporters, readers, and tour and workshop participants of the Water Education Foundation! We’re grateful to each and every person who interacted with us in 2019 and supported our mission.

As we turn the page to 2020, we’re looking ahead to a few changes. 

Attendees at the 2019 Water 101 workshop heard from a variety of experts about California water basics and beyond.

Water 101, Water Summit Dates Set for 2020
Registration now open for Water 101 workshop + tour

We’re putting together an exciting lineup of Foundation conferences for 2020! Mark your calendars now for both our Water 101 workshop, scheduled for Feb. 20 at McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, and our annual Water Summit, scheduled for Sept. 24 at the Westin Sacramento. Stay tuned for further announcements on other events we are planning for 2020.


2019 Water Leaders Class Releases Policy Recommendations for Reducing Wildfire Impacts on Water

The 2019 Water Leaders class organized by the Water Education Foundation completed its year with a report outlining policy recommendations for better managing the increasing risks of wildfire and impacts on water supply and quality.

The class of 23 from various stakeholder groups and backgrounds who hailed from cities and towns across California had full editorial control to choose recommendations.


Latest Western Water Article Explores Debate Over How Best to Resolve Colorado River’s Challenges
Is incremental change the best approach to addressing problems facing the river? Or do we need a grand vision?

The Colorado River is arguably one of the hardest working rivers on the planet, supplying water to 40 million people and a large agricultural economy in the West. But it’s under duress from two decades of drought and decisions made about its management will have exceptional ramifications for the future, especially as impacts from climate change are felt. 

Our latest article in Western Water, our flagship publication, explores the debate over whether incremental change or a grand vision is the best approach to resolving the most pressing issues facing the Colorado River.

Water 101 Workshop, scheduled for Feb. 20, 2020

Save the Dates for 2020 Events, Including All Tours and Water 101 Workshop
Registration open for all tours; grab your early bird tickets now!

You can now register for our full slate of water tours for 2020 as well as our Water 101 workshop. Register up to six weeks before any tour for “early bird” pricing!

Here are the details on all of our 2020 tours and the Water 101 workshop:


Applications for 2020 Water Leaders Class Due Next Week
Alums say program gives big-picture view of California water, informative tours and invaluable contacts

2019 Water Leaders class on ferry ride during Bay-Delta Tour.Applications for one of our most popular programs, Water Leaders, are due Monday, Dec. 9, by 5 p.m.

Launched in 1997 and now led by Executive Director Jennifer Bowles, the Water Leaders program gets you out of the office and into the field — whether it’s on one of our water tours to the Delta or the lower Colorado River, or meeting with your assigned mentor.


Today On Giving Tuesday, Support Water Education in California and the West
Our programs help train the next generation of water leaders and consumers

Today on Giving Tuesday, a global day of generosity, consider supporting the Water Education Foundation by making a donation.

The Foundation is an impartial nonprofit that has been educating people about water issues in California and the West since 1977.


Monday Is the Last Chance to Get a Big Discount on Holiday Gifts for Your Water Wonk
Get 30% off our water maps, layperson's guides & other publications; Support Foundation when shopping online using AmazonSmile

Three water mapsTime is running out to score a sweet holiday gift deal for the water wonk in your life with a special discount on our popular poster-size maps, layperson’s guides and other water publications.

Until midnight Monday, use the discount code HOLIDAYSALE19 at checkout to save 30 percent off your purchase price for maps and publications.

You can also get a gift certificate to send someone to one of our 2020 water tours or our Water 101 Workshop. See below for details.  

And if you’re planning to do other Cyber Monday holiday shopping, you can help support the Foundation by shopping through AmazonSmile, which will donate to the Foundation 0.5 percent of the price of your eligible purchases. Learn more about this special donation program here