2016 conference speakers and presentations

Keynote and Panels

U.S. Reps. Cheri Bustos and Dave Loebsack

Opening Keynote “Grading the River”

Dr. Heath Kelsey, America's Watershed Initiative (AWI) Project Lead, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science.

River/Watershed Panel

Bill Northey - Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Des Moines. EPA State Agency Co-chair Gulf Hypoxia Task Force

Maj. Gen Michael Wehr - Commander, US Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg

Robert Stout - Chairman, Upper Mississippi River Basin Assn. Chief of Planning, Missouri Dept. of Natural Resources


Nick Fanning - Missouri River Energy Services,Sioux Falls, SD

Robert Crear - Rye Development, Boston, MA

Jeremiah Haas - Principal Aquatic Biologist, Exelon, Cordova, IL

Flood Control and Risk Reduction

Dr. Larry Weber - Professor of Engineering, Univ. of Iowa Flood Center, Iowa City

Mike Klingner - Chairman, Upper Miss., Illinois & Missouri Rivers Assn.

Sally McConkey - P.E., CFM, D.WRE., Section Head ,IL State Water Survey, Prairie Research Inst., Univ. of IL


Steven Carlyon - Director, La Crosse Parks, Recreation and Forestry Dept., La Crosse

Kim Rea - Recreation Manager, US Army Corps of Engineers, Alton

Luncheon Speaker

Dana Starkell - Mississippi River Sojourner, Bettendorf


Gretchen Benjamin - Assoc. Dir. Water Resources Infrastructure at The Nature Conservancy, La Crosse

Ken Barr - Chief of Environmental Analysis Branch, US Army Corps of Engineers, Rock Island

Water Supply

Dr. Maria Lemke - Aquatic Ecologist, The Nature Conservancy

Brent Earley - Iowa American Water, Davenport


Mike Cox - Operations Division Chief, US Army Corps of Engineers, Rock Island

Tracy Zea -Waterways Council

Scott Sigman - Transportation Infrastructure Lead, Illinois Soybean Assn., Bloomington

Gulf Hypoxia

Laura Christianson - Ph. D., Asst Prof of Water Quality, Univ. of Illinois, Urbana

Kelly Warner - Hydrologist , USGS IL Water Science Center, Urbana

Steve Richter - Dir. of Conservation Programs, The Nature Conservancy, Wisconsin

Mississippi River Economic Update

Colin Wellenkamp - Executive Director, Miss. River Cities & Towns Initiative, St. Louis.

Raise-the-Grade Challenge

Michael Reuter - North America Water Dir, The Nature Conservancy, St. Louis. Founding Member of AWI

Student Poster Session