Webinar: Sharing the balance of stewardship—the Blackfoot Drought Response Plan

Event Type: 
GNLCC Webinar
Date and Time: 
Apr 14, 2016 12:00 pm MDT

Host: Great Northern LCC Rocky Mountain Partner Forum
Presenter: Jennifer Schoonen, Blackfoot Challenge

As water supply patterns fluctuate wildly from what we once knew as the norm, regional economies and valued natural resources face an uncertain future. In response, drought resiliency has become a growing focus of local communities, government agencies and watershed groups. In Western Montana’s Blackfoot Watershed, diverse watershed stakeholders have been working collaboratively for 20 years to share the burden of those low water years, but also the benefits of a coordinated water conservation and stewardship strategy. This webinar will illustrate how the Blackfoot Drought Response Plan works and how it has evolved recently in response to persistent drought, changing watershed priorities, and a new tribal water compact.

About the presenter:
As the Blackfoot water steward, Jennifer Schoonen manages Blackfoot Challenge programs focused on drought response, irrigation efficiency, water quality, and collaborative watershed stewardship. Previously, Jennifer worked for 11 years for the National Forest Foundation, most recently as vice president of development and communications. She also spent nine years at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation working in communications, conservation education, and land conservation. Jennifer holds a master’s degree in journalism and natural resource management from the University of Arizona.



Field tour at confluence of the Blackfoot and Clearwater rivers, MT. Photo: Anne CarlsonBlackfoot drought response is a process of both on-the-ground stewardship and partner coordination, helping water users prepare and adapt for low water years like 2015 (shown here at the confluence of the Blackfoot and Clearwater rivers, MT). Photo: Anne Carlson