Passing the Torch
The Olympic flame is said to symbolize the light of spirit, knowledge, and life. The passing of the torch from runner to runner, acknowledges collective human achievements as they move from community to community, spreading goodwill to all.
Light is also a universal symbol of wisdom, revealing lessons learned from trying experiences and powerful inspiration from within. Kerry Schwartz has been that light for many. Her relentless pursuit of inspiring young minds and molding the next generation of water stewards is unparalleled. Her insights reshaped Arizona Project WET from its original train-the-trainer format to a fresh approach, not only educating teachers but students and community members as well. She, and the team she built, are responsible for bringing water-wise education to literally hundreds of thousands of Arizonans and others around the country.
At Kerry's recent retirement celebration in Tucson and the leadership transition celebration held in Phoenix, it was only natural that Kerry passed her torch of water wisdom to long-time team member, Holly Hilburn-Thomas. Holly has worked her way up through the ranks from Instructional Specialist to Tucson Education Coordinator, proving at every turn she has what it takes to lead APW into the future.
As Kerry retires her running shoes for hiking boots, searching for new headwaters in her own life, she can rest assured that Holly will take the torch with wisdom and pride, and continue the tradition of expanding water education in an ever-evolving and challenging climate, setting new gold standards for future generations.
My name is Juliana, and I am one of four AmeriCorps Water Educators in Tucson working with Arizona Project WET (APW). So much happened in our first few weeks on the job. We all jumped right into the action. As water educators, we are tasked with teaching students from 4th grade all the way through high school through APW’s different programs. During the first month, in addition to learning about water and how to lead the lessons through training and seminars, we also had firsthand teaching experiences.
On Friday, October 28, the US Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) announced the initiation of an expedited process for developing a “Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS)” on proposed revisions to the December 2007 Record of Decision relating to the Colorado River Interim Guidelines. The SEIS will lay out options to address the troubling operating conditions facing the river system now and in the future. Public comments submitted by December 20 will be reflected in the draft SEIS to be released next spring, with the final expected in late summer.
The WRRC has three great events lined up for this month. Next week, on Thursday, November 10, we will be hosting a Brown Bag webinar featuring two University of Arizona (UArizona) graduate students who will each present on their 104(b) research projects. The presentation from Chandler Noyes will address the paleoclimate and past recharge rates in the Tucson Basin across the Holocene.
The inaugural recipient of the Rodney Blaine Lewis Scholars Award is Divine Kickingbird, who is enrolled at the University of Arizona as a first-year law student and aims to join the graduate program in Tribal Governance.