Rita Schmidt Sudman, Longtime Observer of California Water, Coauthors New Book with Artist/Essayist Stephanie Taylor
“Water: More or Less” also features essays from top policymakers and stakeholders, including Foundation Executive Director Jennifer Bowles
Rita Schmidt Sudman
SACRAMENTO, Calif. _ Rita Schmidt Sudman, former executive director of the Water Education Foundation, and artist/essayist Stephanie Taylor are coauthors of the newly published “Water: More or Less,” an anthology of story, art and policy about water in California.
“Water issues have dominated my life in California, an unpredictable and vulnerable state where there is no such thing as ‘normal,’” Sudman said. “Coauthoring this intriguing book has been a welcome challenge, to synthesize and share 35 accumulated years of observations and experience in a search for options and solutions.”
Jennifer Bowles, current Executive Director of the respected nonprofit Water Education Foundation, said there is no one better for the task of capturing California’s water than Sudman, who witnessed key policy negotiations and decisions, and has been an impartial observer of conflicts and resolution since 1979.
“She is a walking encyclopedia of California water,” Bowles said. “And she’s seen it all on our water tours, from key infrastructure such as dams and aqueducts to agricultural fields and spawning grounds for salmon – virtually every crevice where water is an issue. Not many people can say that.”
Taylor, whose work is published by the Sacramento Bee, provided beautiful essays, paintings and photographs for the book depicting key structures such as Hoover Dam and natural settings associated with California water.
“It’s impossible to write about California without touching water in some way. My essays and paintings are about people in a water landscape,” Taylor said.
In addition to Sudman and Taylor, 20 top water policy leaders and stakeholders, including Bowles, add their diverse voices with personal essays written specially for this book. They explore the controversies and reveal why they are so passionate about water.
- Lester Snow, Water Foundation, interview with Rita
- Kevin Starr, State Librarian Emeritus, Introduction
- Tom Birmingham, Westlands Water District
- Jennifer Bowles, Water Education Foundation
- Celeste Cantú, Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority
- Michael Cohen, Pacific Institute
- Kim Delfino, Defenders of Wildlife
- Laurel Firestone, Community Water Center
- David Guy, Northern California Water Association
- Thomas Harter, University of California, Davis
- Carl Hauge, formerly with the California Department of Water Resources
- Campbell Ingram, Delta Conservancy
- Kevin Kelley, Imperial Irrigation District
- Jeffrey Kightlinger, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
- Sunne Wright McPeak, Delta Vision Foundation
- Dave Orth, California Water Commission
- Tim Quinn, Association of California Water Agencies
- Tim Sloane, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations
- Frances Spivy-Weber, State Water Resources Control Board
- Maureen Stapleton, San Diego County Water Authority.
Water: More or Less is available for purchase through the Water Education Foundation by clicking this link.
It includes 238 pages, full-color paintings and photography, published by Pentimento Press, 2016.
Both Rita and Stephanie are available for readings, signings and presentations.