Conference Schedule

CLICK HERE to download the conference brochure. Changes to the program have been included in the conference agenda below.


WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 11 | TaxSlayer Center (f/k/a iWireless Center), Moline, Ill.


7 - 8:15 a.m. | Registration (Lobby) and Breakfast - Room A


8:15 - 8:30 a.m. | Welcome and Introductory Remarks - Room A


  • Moline Mayor Stephanie Acri
  • Davenport Mayor Frank Klipsch


8:30 - 9:15 a.m. | Keynote Session - Room A

"Climate Trends, Variability and Change: Results from Ohio River Basin/Eastern Midwest Study and What It Means for the Upper Mississippi River Basin" - Jim Noel, NOAA/National Weather Service

9:15 - 10:30 a.m. | Climate Change and Unintended Consequences - Room A
  • Observations on Global Warming - Richard Baker, University of Iowa, retired
  • Climate Change and Extreme Rainfall: Chicago Case Study - Momcilo Markus, Ph. D., University of Illinois
  • Climate Change and the Changes to the River - William C. Veatch, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers


10:30 - 10:45 a.m. | Break


10:45 a.m. - Noon | Morning Concurrent Sessions


The Potential of Hydropower - Room C

  • Partnering for Non-Powered Dam Development - Kenneth Starr, Director of Outreach, American Governor
  • Harnessing the River - Ray Wingert, HDR
  • Environmental Design for Low-Head Waterways - Adam Witt, ORNL


The Need for Partnerships - Room D

  • Writing a Comprehensive Plan with Multi-State Cooperation - Ken Olson, University of Illinois
  • 1 Mississippi Campaign Funding Program - Kelly McGinnis, Mississippi River Network
  • Mussels on the Move - Elizabeth Bainbridge, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service


Noon - 1:15 p.m. | Lunch Program - Room A

Midwestern Impact of Climate Change: A Global Perspective - Ross Powell, Northern Illinois University


1:15 - 2:30 p.m. | Afternoon Concurrent Sessions


Floodplain Restoration - Room C

  • Floodplain Restoration: A Practice for Improving Nutrient Reduction in the Mississippi River - Brad Gordon, American Rivers
  • Illinois Valley Flood Zone Alliance and Other Best Practices for Flood Response - Anthony Heddlesten, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Compliance Requirements for Ecosystem Restoration - Marvin E. Hubbell, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers


How to Build Resilient and Green Infrastructure - Room D

  • Bee Branch Creek Restoration: A Funding Success Story - Deron Muehring, City of Dubuque, Iowa
  • Green Infrastructure on Campus - Nate Keener, Lewis and Clark University
  • Gray vs. Green: The West Union Story 5 Years Later - Jim Patchett, Conservation Design Forum


2:30 - 2:45 p.m. | Break


2:45 - 4 p.m. | Late Afternoon Concurrent Sessions


Water Quality Updates - Room C

  • How Are We Doing and Now What? - Rebecca Smith, The Nature Conservancy
  • How 10 Percent More Precipitation Gives Us 100-Year Floods Every 17 Years - Dr. S. Elwynn Taylor, Extension Climatologist at Iowa State University


Sediment and Nutrient Runoff - Room D

  • Soil and Water Conservation: Highlights from Across the Nation - Clare Lindahl, Soil and Water Conservation Society
  • Large and Small Watershed Planning for Nutrient and Sediment Runoff - Charles Theiling, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Runoff Risk - Dustin Goering, National Weather Service, North Central River Forecast Center


4 - 6 p.m. | Field Trips - Meet in Lobby
  • Green Valley Wetland Restoration Tour [FREE]
  • Bike Ride


4 - 6:30 p.m. | Student Summit - Room C
  • Roger Viadero, Jr., Ph.D., CSE, Western Illinois University
  • Vickie Livingston, Western Illinois University
  • Erin Horning, AmeriCorps
  • Ryan Berger, City of Rock Island, Ill.
  • Miles Brainard, City of Rock Island, Ill.

  • 5:30 - 6:45 p.m. | Student Poster Session


    7 p.m. | Catfish Dinner and Program - Room A
  • 2017 Canoe Voyage - Quad Cities to New Orleans - Dana Starkell, Sojourner

  • THURSDAY, OCTOBER 12 | TaxSlayer Center (f/k/a iWireless Center), Moline, Ill.


    7 a.m. | Registration - Lobby


    8 - 8:45 a.m. | Breakfast – Room A


    9 - 10:15 a.m. | Morning Concurrent Sessions


    So Who Foots the Bill? - Room C

    • The Illinois River: Brought to You By... -- A River Privatization Case Study - Olivia Dorothy, American Rivers
    • Introducing the Natural Infrastructure Initiative: New Ideas for Project Design and Financing - Michael Donahue, AECOM
    • Funding for Natural and Man-made Infrastructure Investments - Robert Sinkler, INTREXON


    Addressing the Challenges for Watershed Management - Room D

    • UMRS Watershed Study Proposal - Kirsten Mickelsen, Upper Mississippi River Basin Association
    • Existing Challenges for Watershed Management Planning and Implementation - Scott Tomkins, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency
    • Moving Watershed Management Into the Future - Mary Beth Stevenson, Iowa Department of Natural Resources


    10:15 - 10:30 a.m. | Break


    10:30 - 11:45 a.m. | Late Morning Session


    Climate Change: What Cities Can Do - Room C

    • Landscaping to Mitigate Climate Change - Amy Kay, Clean Water Manager, City of Davenport, Iowa
    • Cities, Rivers and Climate Mitigation Case Studies - Duane Friend, University of Illinois Extension
    • IDOT All-Hazards Vulnerability Assessment and Climate Change Adaptation - Bryan Cross, Prairie Engineers


    Noon - 1:15 p.m. | Networking Luncheon


    1:15 - 2:30 p.m. | Afternoon Concurrent Sessions


    A Hard Look at the Regulatory Process - Room C

    • What it Takes to Shorten the Process - Robert Sinkler, INTREXON
    • Corps Regulatory Permitting - Kirsten Brown, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

  • Getting Back to Cases: A Look at River City Case Studies and Plans for the Future - Room D

    • River Heritage Park, Davenport, Iowa - Zach Peterson, City of Davenport Public Works
    • City of LaCrosse, Wis. - Steve Carlyon, Director Parks, Recreation & Forestry
    • City of Le Claire, Ia. - Amy Blair, Le Claire Parks & Recreation


    2:30 - 2:45 p.m. | Break


    2:45 - 4 p.m. | Closing Plenary Session - Room A

    Raising the Grade - A Discussion with Conference Speakers and Attendees