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A joint project of Texas Tech University, Schreiner University, the Hill Country Alliance and Texas Public Radio

Listen to past recordings of the Texas Water Symposiums on Texas Public Radio


2017 Texas Water Symposium Series

November 9, 2017: Climate and Water in Central Texas: Planning for a Changing Resource

Moderator: Weir LaBatt, Former Director of the Texas Water Development Board, Panelists: Dr. John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas State Climatologist and Regents Professor at Texas A&M; John Zeitler, Science & Operations Officer, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA); Suzanne Scott, GM, San Antonio River Authority; Chairperson, Region L Water Planning Group and Guadalupe-San Antonio Basin and Bay Stakeholder Committee; Bill Neiman, Founder, Native American Seed Farm, Junction

May 3, 2017: The Impact Of Invasive Species On Texas Water Resources

Moderator: Tim Birdsong: Ecosystem/Habitat Assessment Chief of Inland Fisheries for Texas Parks and Wildlife, Panelists: Dr. Tom Arsuffi: Director of the Llano River Field Station at Texas Tech University – Junction, Bob Howells: Retired TPWD: Author of Freshwater Mussels of Texas, Rachael Ranft: Director of Northern Hill Country River Projects, The Nature Conservancy

February 23, 2017: Watershed Protection Programs: Healthy Waterways at a Community Scale
Moderated by: Dr. Andrew Sansom – Executive Director and Professor of Practice, The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment; Panelists: Mike Bira – Texas Nonpoint Source Program Manager, US-EPA Region 6; Chris Herrington – Water Resource Evaluation Section Manager, City of Austin Watershed Protection Department; Brian Koch – Regional Watershed Coordinator, Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board; Meredith Miller – Watershed Services Program Coordinator, The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment; Kerry Niemann – Section Manager, Water Quality Planning Division, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality; Dianne Wassenich – Program Director, San Marcos River Foundation

2016 Texas Water Symposium Series

November 10, 2016: 2017 Legislative Outlook: Population Growth and Groundwater Management – Moderated by: Suzanne Schwartz, Lecturer and Environmental Program Director for the Center for Public Policy Dispute Resolution at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Center for Energy, Law & Business; Panelists: State Representative Tracy O. King – House District 80; Steve Kosub – San Antonio Water System, Senior Water Resources Counsel; Amy Hardberger PG – St. Mary’s University School of Law, Professor and Associate Dean; Dirk Aaron – Clearwater Underground Conservation District, General Manager

September 1, 2016: Schreiner University: How Micro-Flora & Fauna Contribute To Water Quality – Moderated by: Mary Ellen Summerlin – Former Director, Headwaters Groundwater Conservation District. Panelists: Bob Howells – Retired TPWD, Author of Freshwater Mussels of Texas; Tara Bushnoe -Natural Resources Coordinator, Upper Guadalupe River Authority; Ryan Caesar – Professor of Invertebrate Biology, Schreiner University; Mateo Scoggins – Ecological Service Restoration Practitioner

May 18, 2016 –Economic and Conservation Perspectives on Protected Species: If you can’t cook ‘em, eat ‘em or shoot ‘em, what the heck good are they?”   – Moderated by Weir Labatt, former Texas Water Development Board and Edwards Aquifer Authority board member; Panelists: Robert Gulley J.D., Ph.D., – Texas Comptroller’s Office Director of Economic Growth and Endangered Species Management; Adam Zerrenner – Field Supervisor with the US Fish and Wildlife Service; Tom Arsuffi Ph.D., – Director of the Llano River Field Station at Texas Tech University in Junction

February 11, 2016 –The Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer: Characteristics and Ability to Sustainably Serve the Long-Term Needs of a Thirsty Region” – Moderator: Dr. Robert Mace, Deputy Executive Administrator, Water Science & Conservation, Texas Water Development Board; Panelists:Bill Hutchison Ph.D., P.E., P.G., Former Groundwater Resources Director of the Texas Water Development Board and practicing hydro-geologist; James Bené P.G. – Practicing hydro-geologist, principal at R.W. Harden & Associates, Inc.; George Rice P.G. – Practicing hydro-geologist; Steve Young Ph.D., P.E., P.G. — Practicing hydro-geologist, principal at INTERA Geosciences

2015 Texas Water Symposium Series

October 21, 2015 – “The San Antonio/Vista Ridge Pipeline: Regional Considerations of a Potential Municipal Water Supply Project” – Moderator: Neena Satija, Investigative Reporter for the Texas Tribune; Panelists: Robert Puente, CEO of the San Antonio Water System (SAWS); Alan Dutton Ph.D., PG, hydro geologist and Associate Professor at UTSA Department of Geological Sciences; Calvin Finch D., formerly with the Texas A&M University Institute of Renewable Natural Resources; Sharlene Leurig, director of the Sustainable Water Infrastructure Program at Ceres; Annalisa Pease, executive director of the Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance

July 18, 2015 – “Regional Growth and Our State Water Planning Process: How You Can Get Involved” – Moderator: Richard Parker, Author, Lone Star Nation – Panelists: Kathleen Jackson P.E.: Board of Directors, Texas Water Development Board; Donna Klaeger: Former Burnet County Judge, Region K representative; Paul Tybor P.G.: General Manager, Hill Country Underground Water Conservation District

2014 Texas Water Symposium Series

November 20, 2014 – “Balancing Rural and Urban Water Needs: How Local and Regional Planning Activities Ensure Long-Term Supplies” – Moderator: State Representative-Elect Andrew Murr, House District 53, Hill Country Counties include: Bandera, Crockett, Edwards, Kerr, Kimble, Llano, Mason, Medina, Menard, Real, Schleicher and Sutton – Panelists: Suzanne B. Scott, General Manager of the San Antonio River Authority, and Chairman of the Guadalupe/San Antonio Bay and Basin Stakeholder Committee; John Ashworth PG, Hydro-geologist at LBG-Guyton, and Plateau Regional Water Planning Group (Region J) Professional Consultant; Tommy Mathews, PG, REM – President Westward Environmental, Inc., Guadalupe Blanco River Authority Director from Kendall County – Board Vice Chair, Former Cow Creek GCD Representative – Board President (2000-2014)

March 20, 2014 – “The Pedernales: Challenges and Opportunities Facing an Iconic Hill Country River Basin” – Moderator: Dr. Andrew Sansom, Director, Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, Texas State University – Panelists: Tim Birdsong, Ecosystem/Habitat Assessment Chief, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department; Mark Steinbach, Executive Director, Texas Land Conservancy; Clinton Bailey, Director, Public Works and Utilities, City of Fredericksburg; Pam Mabry Bergman, Landowner and Hill Country Land Trust Board Member, Pedernales Basin; Howard Hicks, Landowner and Vice President for Public Affairs, Holt Cat

2013 Texas Water Symposium Series

March 8, 2013 – “Texas Springs: Making Connections between Groundwater, Surface Water, Science and Stewardship” – Moderator: Edwards County Judge Souli Shanklin – Rural Land Steward Panel: David Langford, Tom Vandivier and Ruthie Russell; Groundwater and Science: Dr. Robert Mace, Deputy Executive Administrator-Water Science and Conservation, Texas Water Development Board; Springs, Surface Water and Science: Dr. Tom Arsuffi, Director, Texas Tech University Llano River Field Station

October 24, 2013 – “A Conversation about Private Property Rights”
Moderator: Weir Labatt – Panalists: Joseph B.C. Fitzsimons, Sharlene Leurig and Garry Merritt

2011-2012 Texas Water Symposium series

October 20, 2011 – “The Drought; What, Where, Why and When” – Moderator: Tom Arsuffi, TTU Llano River Field Center – Panelists: John Nielson Gammon, Texas State Climatologist; Bruce McCarl, Texas A&M; John Baccus, TTU; and Todd Votteler, GBRA

March 22, 2012 – “Healthy Watersheds: Where all is connected and how best to manage our precious natural water storage and filtration systems” – Moderator: Tim Birdsong, Chief of Freshwater Habitat Conservation, TPWD – Panelists: Gary Garrett, TPWD; Aaron Wendt, Texas State Soil and Watershed Conservation Board; Kevin Wagner, Texas Water Resources Institute; Christy Muse, Hill Country Alliance; Tom Arsuffi, TTU, Llano River Field Station

April 12, 2012 – “Fracking and the Energy/Water nexus; A look at every aspect and every question surrounding this timely issue” – Moderator: Dr. Tim Summerland, President of Schreiner University – Panelists: Leslie Savage, Texas Railroad Commission; Cyrus B.H. Reed, Sierra Club; Dr. Ken Rainwater, TTU Water Resources Center

May 17, 2012 – “Groundwater for Texans; A discussion of the recent ruling of the highly publicized “Day” case, how it affects all stakeholders and our complex water policy framework in Texas” – Moderator: Evan Smith, Texas Tribune – Panelists: Greg Ellis, Groundwater Attorney; Tom Mason, Graves Dougherty Hearon and Moody, former GM at LCRA; Russell Johnson, Lead Counsel for TWA – Download Flier

2010-2011 Texas Water Symposium

October 10, 2010 – “Legislative Action Affecting Texas Water Resources.” The Texas Legislature will be convening in 2011 and some of the most important issues they’ll be discussing will involve water right issues. This Newsmaker Hour features the first panel discussion of the 2010-2011 Texas Water Symposium series. The Texas Water Symposium is a joint project of Schreiner University, Texas Tech University, the Hill Country Alliance and Texas Public Radio. The first panel discussion focused on “Legislative Action Affecting Texas Water Resources” and was held on September 30, 2010 in the Texas Capital auditorium in Austin, Texas. Christy Muse, Director of the Hill Country Alliance makes some opening remarks and introduces the panel moderator, Texas Representative Harvey Hildebran of the 53rd District. On the panel are Robert Mace, deputy executive administrator at the Texas Water Development Board; State District 132 representative Bill Callegari, currently serving as Vice-Chair of the House Committee on Natural Resources and State Representative of the 73rd District, Doug Miller, a member of the Natural Resources and Administration.

November 21, 2010 – “Insidious and Stealthy: Invasive Species – Water Thieves of Texas.” The second panel discussion of the 2010 – 2011 Texas Water Symposium series, “Insidious and Stealthy: Invasive Species – Water Thieves of Texas,” was held on November 11, 2010 at the Hill Country University Center in Fredericksburg, Texas. The Texas Water Symposium is a joint project of Texas Tech University, Schreiner University, the Hill Country Alliance and Texas Public Radio. Julie Martenson, Director of Off-campus sites for Texas Tech University opens the program.

February 6, 2011 – “Exploring the complexities and challenges in providing water for Texans in the 21st Century” – Panelists: Les Shephard, Director of the University of Texas at San Antonio Institute for Conventional, Alternative and Renewable Energy; Carey King, Ph.D., with the Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy; and John Brocksch, Managing Partner and CEO of the Aquifer Group. Tom Arsuffi, with Texas Tech University opens the program

April 10, 2011 – “River Watch Programs and Activities in the Hill Country: How Local Communities Take Care of their Rivers and Water.” – Panelists Dr. Robert Brischetto, Cleanup coordinator for the Medina River Protection Fund; Tyson Broad with the South Llano River Watershed Alliance; and Dianne Wassenich, Executive Director of the San Marcos River Foundation. Moderating the discussion is Andrew Sansom, Executive Director of the River Systems Institute at Texas State University. Introduction by Tom Arsuffi, Director of the Llano River Field Station at Texas Tech University Center in Junction, Texas.

2009-2010 Texas Water Symposium

November 20, 2009 – “Our Limited Groundwater Supply: For Whose Desired Future Conditions Are We Planning?” Moderator: Robert E. Mace, Ph.D., of the Texas Water Development Board. Panelists: Mary Ellen Summerlin of the Headwaters Groundwater Conservation District, Weldon Hammond, Ph.D., of the UTSA Center for Water Research, and Gregory M. Ellis, J.D., Executive Director of the Texas Alliance of Groundwater Conservation Districts. Introduction by Tim Summerlin, President of Shriner University.

February 5, 2010 •”Climate Change and Impacts on Floods, Weather and Drought in Texas:What Controversy?” – Panelists: Robert E. Mace of the Texas Water Development Board, Todd Votteler of the Guadalupe River Authority and Katherine Hayhoe of Texas Tech University.

April 2, 2010 The Texas Water Symposium – “Kids, Water, and Science: Perspectives from Our Future.” – Speakers: Irene Pickhardt, assistant director of Science for the Texas Education Agency providing leadership of K-12 science programs in Texas public schools – Introducing the winners and awarding the prizes: Cindy Loeffler, water resources branch chief for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and Linda Ruiz McCall, an education and outreach specialist in water science and conservation at the Texas Water Development Board.

2008-2009 Texas Water Symposium

October 3, 2008 – “Texas Hill Country in Change: People, Property, Planning and Springs.” – Panelists: Chad Norris, aquatic biologist with the Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife; Bebe and Mary Fenstermaker, owners of the Maverick Ranch-Fromme Farm in northeast Bexar County; and Sean Garretson, President of Pegasus Planning In Austin, Texas. Moderator: Robert Potts, President of Dixon Water Foundation – Introduction: Tom Arsuffi, Director of the Texas Tech University Center at Junction.

November 21, 2008 – “The Edwards Aquifer Juggling Act: Conservation, Springs, Alternatives and Policy.” Moderator: Robert Potts, President of the Dixon Water Foundation – Panelists: Robert Puente, President and CEO of the San Antonio Water System and Doug Miller, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Edwards Aquifer Authority.

February 6, 2009 – “History of the Rule of Capture: Its role and status in shaping water policy and planning in Texas.” – Hosted by the Admiral Nimitz Foundation and The National Museum of the Pacific War.

March 20, 2009 – “Forging Partnership: Addressing Complex Water Issues in Texas.” – Moderator: Robert Potts, President of the Dixon Water Foundation – Panelists: Bill Ross, Schreiner University Wilson Fellow; A. L. “Curg” Starkey III, rancher and the great-grandson of a founding father of Kerr County and David K. Langford, Vice-President emeritus of the Texas Wildlife Association.

2007-2008 Texas Water Symposium

October 5, 2007 –  “More Precious than Gold.”  – Panelists: Joe Beal, General Manager of the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA); Bill West, General Manager of the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA); and Robert Potts, former General Manager of the Edwards Aquifer Authority and current President of the Dixon Water Foundation – Moderator: Bill Jeffrey, Professor at Texas Tech University Law School – Introduction: Dr. Tim Summerlin, President of Schreiner University.

November 16, 2007 – “H2O: The Science of Water Issues”  – Panelists: Tom Arsuffi, Ph.D., Director, Llano River Field Stattion Texas Tech University Center at Junction Texas; Ken Rainwater, Ph.D. Water Resource Center Director and professor of Civil Engineering at Texas Tech University; Kirk WineMiller, Ph.D., Section of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology in the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences at Texas A&M University; and George Ward, Ph.D., Research Scientist and Associate Director of the Center for Research in Water Resources at the University of Texas – Moderator: Bill Jeffrey, professor at Texas Tech Law School in Lubbock.

February 1, 2008 – Water Conservation: Taking Action for Your Children’s Children” – Panelists: John Sutton, with the Texas Water Development Board; Dr. Ken Kramer, Director of the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club; Karen Guz, Director of Conservation for the San Antonio Water System and Billy Kniffen, County extension agent for Agriculture and Natural Resources in Menard County – Moderator: Bill Jeffrey, a professor at Texas Tech University in Lubbock.

March 14, 2008 “Policy, Planning and Politics: Where Do We go from Here?” – Panelists: Myron Hess, legal counsel and director of Texas Water Programs for the National Wildlife Federation Austin; Texas House of Representative for District 119, Robert Puente; and Laura Marbury, Senior Water Analyst for the Texas Office of Environmental Defense Land, Water and Wildlife Program – Moderator: Bill Jeffrey, a professor at Texas Tech University in Lubbock.