GWC Events and Partner Meetings

Be sure to join us for the spring partner meeting at Little Ocmulgee State Park on April 28 in conjunction with Georgia River Network's Weekend for Rivers. Details in calendar listing below!


Spring GWC Partner Meeting @ Little Ocmulgee State Park
Apr 27 @ 6:00 pm – Apr 28 @ 4:00 pm

The GWC will hold its 2017 spring partner meeting in conjunction with the Georgia River Network’s Weekend for Rivers  Event. There will be multiple training opportunities for our partners during this multi-day event. Come enjoy two days of learning and sharing with fellow water advocates. Engage in the river revelry and share your river revelations!  Register now at

We have 15 rooms in the Lodge and 25 campsites blocked for Thursday 4/27/17 thru Saturday 4/29/17. Please use the 04748 when making your reservations at Little Ocmulgee State Park Reservations.

Thanks to our sponsors to date: April Ingle Consulting, Kelly Jordan



Water Coalition Meeting

Thursday, April 27th     
6PM – 10:00PM … Group supper and socializing
Come ​early ​to ​Little ​Ocmulgee ​State ​Park ​and ​join ​us ​Thursday ​evening ​for ​supper ​and ​socializing ​with ​GWC ​partners. ​ ​We ​will ​enjoy ​a ​meal ​catered ​by ​Altamaha ​Riverkeeper ​at ​Group ​Pavilion ​1 ​from ​6- ​10:00PM. ​ ​Open ​to ​any ​partner ​group ​of ​the ​Georgia ​Water ​Coalition. ​Menu: ​Grilled ​chicken, ​Spaghetti ​& ​Meatballs ​& ​sauces, ​Ham/bean ​stew, ​Veggie ​stew, ​Green ​bean ​casserole, ​Salad, ​Rolls, ​$15 ​ ​BYOB

Friday, April 28th  Spring Georgia Water Coalition Meeting & Advocacy Training Workshop
Georgia ​Water ​Coalition ​partners ​will ​meet ​on ​Friday, ​April ​28th ​for ​a ​day ​of ​workshops ​and ​discussions ​on ​current ​water ​policy. ​ ​We ​will ​talk ​about ​the ​results ​of ​the ​2017 ​legislative ​session ​and ​discuss ​plans ​for ​work ​needed ​in ​the ​upcoming ​months. ​ ​River ​Network ​will ​present ​a ​talk ​on ​current ​southeast ​water ​policies ​and ​Chattahoochee ​Riverkeeper ​will ​share ​the ​results ​of ​a ​study ​on ​Georgia’s ​agricultural ​water ​use ​in ​Georgia. ​Current ​issues ​like ​buffers, ​coal ​ash ​disposal, ​pipelines ​and ​more ​will ​be ​on ​the ​agenda. ​ ​We ​will ​spend ​the ​afternoon ​in ​a ​workshop ​that ​our ​partners ​specifically ​asked ​for: ​Learning ​how ​to ​establish ​relationships ​with ​local ​and ​state ​officials ​and ​how ​to ​successfully ​advocate ​for ​your ​issues. ​You ​won’t ​want ​to ​miss ​this ​opportunity ​to ​learn ​and ​network ​with ​your ​fellow ​water ​advocates.

Tentative ​Agenda:
Breakfast ​on ​your ​own. ​
8:15AM ​ Registration ​opens
9:00AM Meeting ​Begins: ​Legislative ​debriefing ​and ​multiple ​presentations
Noon Lunch ​on ​your ​own ​at ​the ​Lodge ​restaurant
1 ​– ​4PM Workshop ​led ​by ​GWC ​Leaders: ​How ​to ​Successfully ​Advocate ​on ​the
Local ​and ​State ​Level

GWC ​Advocacy Training Workshop ​Descriptions
The ​Georgia ​Water ​Coalition’s ​230+ ​partner ​organizations ​work ​with ​local ​and ​state ​elected ​officials ​to ​promote ​enough ​clean ​water ​for ​all ​Georgians. ​ ​Join ​leaders ​from ​the ​Coalition ​to ​discuss ​simple ​steps ​you ​can ​take ​to ​promote ​clean ​water ​in ​your ​community. ​ ​Training ​includes ​how ​to ​find ​your ​lawmakers, ​identify ​influencers, ​and ​successfully ​advocate ​for ​your ​issues ​- ​locally ​and ​at ​the ​state ​level. ​ ​

River ​Network ​Presentation ​- ​Protecting ​and ​Restoring ​Flows ​in ​Your ​River: ​State ​Policies ​for ​Water ​Security ​and ​Sustainability, ​Katherine ​Baer ​and ​April ​Ingle
In ​this ​session, ​River ​Network ​will ​present ​information, ​recommendations ​and ​models ​on ​how ​you ​can ​protect ​and ​restore ​your ​river’s ​flows ​through ​state ​policy. ​As ​part ​of ​their ​efforts ​to ​support ​advocates ​in ​their ​work ​to ​protect ​and ​restore ​healthy ​rivers, ​River ​Network ​recently ​completed ​a ​comprehensive ​evaluation ​of ​state-level ​flow ​protection ​policies ​in ​the ​southeast. ​Their ​analysis ​includes ​the ​scientific ​foundations ​of ​water ​budgets, ​supply ​management, ​flow ​protection ​and ​demand ​management ​policies, ​as ​well ​as ​policies ​for ​the ​built ​environment. ​The ​report ​synthesizes ​the ​status ​of ​these ​policies ​in ​five ​Southeastern ​states ​– ​Alabama, ​Georgia, ​North ​Carolina, ​South ​Carolina, ​and ​Tennessee ​– ​and ​offers ​recommendations ​and ​models ​from ​within ​and ​outside ​the ​region ​for ​how ​these ​policies ​can ​be ​strengthened. ​This ​research ​was ​compiled ​in ​the ​report: ​Protecting ​and ​Restoring ​Flows ​in ​Our ​Southeastern ​Rivers: ​A ​Synthesis ​of ​State ​Policies ​for ​Water ​Security ​and ​Sustainability. ​River ​Network ​also ​developed ​a ​corresponding ​online ​science ​module ​on ​Environmental ​Flows ​and ​Water ​Security ​with ​several ​components ​focused ​on ​understanding ​and ​developing ​water ​budgets ​and ​environmental ​flows.

The ​Agricultural ​Water ​Footprint ​in ​Georgia ​– ​Chris ​Manganiello
The ​energy ​and ​agricultural ​sectors ​utilize ​more ​water ​than ​any ​other ​economic ​interests ​in ​the ​United ​States. ​ ​Many ​environmentalists ​and ​conservationists ​have ​a ​firm ​grasp ​on ​municipal ​and ​industrial ​water ​demands, ​conservation ​and ​efficiency, ​and ​an ​appreciation ​of ​the ​energy-water ​nexus. ​ ​However, ​many ​lack ​awareness ​about ​the ​agricultural ​sector’s ​water ​footprint. ​ ​Georgians ​must ​have ​a ​full ​understanding ​of ​the ​state’s ​complete ​water ​budget ​to ​appreciate ​the ​challenges ​their ​communities, ​state ​and ​region ​face ​while ​seeking ​healthy ​flows ​to ​meet ​the ​freshwater ​challenge. ​ ​This ​presentation ​will ​discuss ​the ​agricultural ​water ​footprint ​in ​Georgia ​to ​provide ​an ​objective ​understanding ​of ​the ​agricultural ​effects ​on ​healthy ​flows ​and ​opportunities ​in ​Georgia.

Stick around for Georgia River Network’s “Weekend ​for ​Rivers” starting Friday night!
Georgia ​River ​Network’s ​Weekend ​for ​Rivers ​items ​are ​offered ​”a ​la ​carte” ​this ​year ​rather ​than ​in ​an ​all ​inclusive ​ticket ​in ​order ​to ​provide ​you ​with ​the ​lowest ​possible ​price ​based ​on ​what ​you ​want ​to ​participate ​in ​and ​what ​meals ​you ​wish ​to ​eat ​with ​us ​during ​your ​stay ​at ​Little ​Ocmulgee ​State ​Park. ​Buffet ​lunch ​can ​be ​purchased ​separately ​in ​the ​dining ​room ​during ​lunch ​break ​for ​$9.25. ​ ​Also ​plan ​to ​pay ​$5 ​for ​parking ​unless ​you ​have ​a ​Georgia ​State ​Park’s ​pass ​or ​have ​a ​reservation ​in ​a ​lodge ​room. You ​can ​purchase ​just ​the ​Guided ​Paddle ​on ​the ​Little ​Ocmulgee ​on ​Saturday ​afternoon ​if ​you ​wish ​to ​just ​come ​for ​this ​activity. ​ ​The ​paddle ​will ​be ​from ​3:30-7:30pm. ​Boat ​rental ​options ​are ​available. ​This ​guided ​paddling ​trip ​is ​limited ​to ​25 ​participants. ​Sign ​up ​early ​to ​secure ​your ​spot!

Friday ​April ​28, ​6-10pm
GRN ​Low ​Country ​Boil ​Dinner ​and ​River ​Celebration ​Awards
Dinner ​catered ​by ​Altamaha ​Riverkeeper, ​Cash ​Bar
$25 ​for ​dinner ​ticket, ​Drinks ​are ​$3 ​at ​cash ​bar
Evening ​– ​Spend ​the ​night ​in ​Little ​Ocmulgee ​State ​Park ​– ​camp ​out ​or ​reserve ​a ​lodge ​room!

Saturday ​April ​29 – Conference Sessions and Paddle
8am-9am ​Registration ​and ​Hot ​Breakfast ​in ​the ​Dining ​Room

9:00-9:25 ​Welcome ​and ​Introductions ​

9:30-10:15 ​Lisa ​Hollingsworth-Segedy, ​AICP, ​American ​Rivers
Is ​Dam ​Removal ​Right ​for ​Your ​River?
Dam ​removal ​is ​an ​established ​practice ​in ​many ​parts ​of ​the ​US ​for ​eliminating ​obsolete ​infrastructure, ​reconnecting ​aquatic ​connectivity, ​improving ​water ​quality, ​and ​providing ​community ​resilience ​for ​increasing ​climate ​uncertainty. ​ ​But ​how ​can ​you ​be ​sure ​that ​your ​river ​would ​benefit ​from ​dam ​removal? ​ ​This ​practice-oriented ​presentation ​will ​focus ​on ​a ​watershed ​self-assessment ​tool ​and ​real-world ​examples ​to ​guide ​you ​through ​the ​process ​of ​defining ​potential ​benefits ​and ​drawbacks ​of ​dam ​removal ​in ​your ​community.

10:25-10:55 ​Katherine ​Baer, ​River ​Network ​
From Lemons to Clean Water
Given the current political realities at the national level, sharing success stories of groups who have thrived and achieved gains in tough times is more important than ever. Learn about how groups around the country are organizing effective campaigns and projects and incorporating broad community engagement as part of their work to achieve clean and healthy rivers. This session will focus on sharing these stories and also providing an update on the Campaign for Clean Water’s work to defend the Clean Water Act and how grassroots groups can engage.

11:00-11:55 ​Brian ​Gist ​of ​SELC
How ​to ​Reduce ​the ​Impacts ​of ​Transportation ​Projects ​on ​Rivers
In ​2015, ​the ​Georgia ​General ​Assembly ​dramatically ​increased ​the ​Georgia ​Department ​of ​Transportation’s ​funding ​for ​building ​and ​maintaining ​roads ​and ​bridges ​in ​the ​state. ​As ​a ​result, ​the ​agency ​has ​begun ​an ​unprecedented ​wave ​of ​construction ​projects ​around ​the ​state. ​ ​Although ​many ​of ​these ​projects ​are ​necessary, ​some ​raise ​concerns ​about ​their ​potential ​impacts ​on ​waters, ​wetlands, ​and ​communities. ​This ​session ​will ​focus ​on ​the ​impacts ​of ​transportation ​projects, ​how ​the ​community ​can ​engage ​with ​GDOT ​to ​design ​better ​projects, ​and ​how ​organizations ​push ​back ​on ​bad ​projects. ​ ​

Track ​Two
10:25-11:55 ​Strategic ​Planning ​with ​April ​Ingle
Plan ​Your ​Impact! ​Create ​an ​Inspired ​Strategic ​Plan ​to ​Guide ​Your ​River ​Work
This ​workshop ​is ​for ​staff, ​board ​members, ​volunteers ​or ​interns ​who ​would ​like ​a ​USEFUL ​and ​INSPIRED ​strategic ​plan ​to ​guide ​your ​work ​to ​protect, ​restore ​and/or ​get ​more ​people ​out ​on ​your ​river. ​ ​This ​workshop ​will ​demystify ​the ​strategic ​planning ​process ​and ​teach ​you ​what ​you ​need ​to ​know ​to ​create ​a ​plan ​that ​you’ll ​actually ​use ​and ​can ​serve ​as ​your ​map ​and ​compass ​to ​achieve ​the ​impact ​you ​want. ​ ​The ​truth ​is ​that ​there ​are ​no ​special ​tricks ​or ​talents ​required ​to ​develop ​a ​strategic ​plan, ​but ​there ​are ​important ​steps ​to ​follow. ​In ​this ​engaging, ​informative ​and ​inspiring ​workshop ​we’ll ​learn ​what ​those ​steps ​are, ​how ​to ​navigate ​them, ​and ​how ​to ​put ​your ​strategic ​plan ​to ​use ​to ​guide ​your ​staff ​and ​interns ​and ​engage ​and ​empower ​your ​board ​and ​volunteers.

12:00-1:00 ​Lunch
Lunch ​on ​own ​in ​dining ​room.

1-3:00 ​Conference ​Sessions
Water ​Trails
1:00-1:15 ​ ​ ​The ​Wonderful ​World ​of ​Water ​Trails ​with ​Gwyneth ​Moody, ​GRN ​Director ​of ​Programs ​and ​Outreach
Turn ​your ​Community ​into ​a ​River ​Town ​– ​Build ​a ​Water ​Trail!
Is ​there ​a ​paddleable ​river ​in ​your ​community ​that ​no ​one ​knows ​about ​or ​is ​thought ​of ​negatively ​as ​“that ​place ​where ​the ​riffraff ​hangout ​and ​I’m ​never ​gonna ​bring ​my ​kids?” ​Does ​your ​community ​need ​revitalization ​in ​the ​areas ​of ​recreation, ​river ​health, ​and ​economic ​development? ​How ​about ​changing ​this ​negative ​perception ​into ​a ​positive ​by ​developing ​your ​local ​river ​into ​a ​water ​trail ​and ​changing ​your ​community ​into ​a ​River ​Town ​where ​your ​river ​brings ​in ​tourism ​and ​is ​celebrated! ​In ​this ​workshop ​you ​will ​learn ​the ​key ​elements ​necessary ​to ​develop ​a ​successful ​water ​trail.

1:20-1:40 ​ ​Water ​Trail ​Funding ​with ​Cheryl ​Delk, ​RLA, ​Special ​Projects ​Coordinator ​for ​Newton ​County ​Board ​of ​Commissioners ​and ​founding ​member ​of ​Yellow ​River ​Water ​Trail
FUNding ​your ​Water ​Trail ​Projects ​
This ​workshop ​will ​give ​examples ​and ​walk ​you ​through ​the ​process ​of ​accessing ​grants, ​other ​government ​funding, ​the ​importance ​of ​grass ​root ​support, ​and ​master ​planning ​your ​river ​trail ​projects. ​ ​The ​presentation ​will ​take ​a ​specific ​grant ​application ​such ​as ​Recreational ​Trail ​Program ​and ​Land ​and ​Water ​Conservation ​Funding ​administered ​through ​the ​GA ​Department ​of ​Natural ​Resources, ​ ​and ​SPLOST ​and ​talk ​you ​through ​it, ​utilizing ​the ​history ​of ​our ​Yellow ​River ​Water ​Trail ​non-profit ​and ​our ​collaboration ​with ​local, ​state, ​and ​federal ​agencies. ​ ​FUNding ​is ​somewhat ​of ​an ​oxymoron ​… ​the ​honest ​ups ​and ​downs ​will ​be ​shared.

1:45-2:05 ​ ​Water ​Trail ​Launch ​Design ​with ​Don ​Wells, ​President ​Mountain ​Stewards
Build ​the ​Perfect ​Launch ​for ​your ​Water ​Trail
The ​Mountain ​Stewards ​all-volunteer ​Trail ​Crew ​has ​planned, ​designed, ​constructed ​and ​maintained ​over ​a ​million ​dollars ​of ​recreational ​facilities ​in ​the ​North ​Georgia ​area ​in ​the ​past ​decade. ​Included ​in ​these ​are ​Water ​Trail ​Launch ​facilities ​built ​in ​three ​counties. ​This ​program ​will ​discuss ​the ​planning, ​design ​and ​construction ​of ​launch ​facilities ​from ​the ​simplest ​to ​the ​most ​complex.

2:10-2:30 ​ ​ ​Navigating ​the ​Snags ​and ​Rapids ​of ​Permitting, ​Keith ​Parsons
Constructing ​launch ​sites ​along ​the ​banks ​of ​rivers ​and ​streams ​often ​requires ​permits ​and ​various ​forms ​of ​permission ​from ​potentially ​a ​myriad ​of ​entities, ​mostly ​governments ​at ​local, ​state ​and ​federal ​levels. ​ ​Its ​a ​paper ​chase, ​but ​can ​be ​confusing ​and ​confounding. ​This ​session ​will ​look ​at ​what ​permits ​may ​be ​required, ​who ​needs ​to ​be ​brought ​into ​the ​process, ​what ​may ​be ​required ​for ​various ​levels ​of ​permitting, ​and ​maybe, ​most ​importantly, ​how ​to ​design ​a ​project ​that ​minimizes ​or ​entirely ​avoids ​the ​need ​for ​certain ​permits ​or ​other ​legal ​instruments ​of ​permission.

2:35-2:55 ​ ​Water ​Trail ​Marketing ​with ​Cheryl ​Smith, ​Tourism ​Project ​Manager, ​Northeast ​Georgia ​Mountains ​Region, ​Georgia ​Dept. ​of ​Economic ​Development
Get ​the ​Word ​Out! ​Marketing ​Tools ​& ​Resources ​for ​your ​Water ​Trail ​
Learn ​about ​ways ​to ​market ​and ​promote ​your ​water ​trail. ​Tap ​into ​the ​Georgia ​Department ​of ​Economic ​Development ​– ​Tourism ​Division’s ​Programs ​and ​Services ​and ​learn ​how ​the ​Etowah ​River ​Water ​Trail ​has ​successfully ​marketed ​their ​trail ​through ​various ​marketing ​tools ​such ​as ​social ​media, ​brochures, ​website, ​maps, ​signage, ​kiosks, ​etc. ​as ​well ​as ​the ​costs ​involved, ​and ​resources ​available.

Closing ​Remarks
3:30 ​Paddle ​on ​the ​Little ​Ocmulgee ​River ​or ​Explore ​the ​Park ​



Partner Opportunity – Drought Management and Conservation Partnership Conference @ Georgia Association of Water Professionals (GAWP) headquarters, Marietta, GA
May 3 @ 9:00 am – 3:30 pm

Georgia Water Wise Council, the May 3rd Drought Management & Conservation Partnerships conference will bring together water utilities, large water users, the green industry and non-profit environmental conservation groups to learn and share on best practices in water conservation and collaborative partnerships for success.

  • Hear from Georgia utilities, industries and commercial water users about new conservation programs
  • Learn from a top national expert in planning and designing water efficiency programs
  • Get perspectives from non-profit environmental groups on water efficiency in Georgia

WHEN: May 3, 2017, 9 am – 3:30 pm

WHERE: Georgia Association of Water Professionals (GAWP) headquarters, Marietta, GA

WHO: Speakers include non-profit environmental groups*, large water users, Georgia’s green industry, and water utilities

The conference program includes resources for ALL of these stakeholder groups—and a special focus on collaborative partnership opportunities.

Registration is online via GAWP.*

*Please note: Scholarship opportunities are available for non-profit organizations. Please contact Ben Emanuel at [email protected].

Fall GWC Partner Meeting @ Georgia Wildlife Federation Alcovy Conservation Center
Nov 15 all-day