This month we are gearing up for our 9th Annual Chesapeake Watershed Forum, as we expect a full house. At this year’s #ChesForum we are welcoming our keynote speaker, Dr. Wallace J Nichols, author of the acclaimed book, Blue Mind. We are honored to welcome the self-proclaimed “turtle geek” and are anticipating a brilliant talk. Nichols has attacked the crossroads between nature and our brain: why we seek out nature, specifically bodies of water, and what it does to our mind. This couldn’t be a better talk for a gathering of watershed stewards who spend time in the streams and rivers for work and for fun.

At our Saturday morning Plenary Session Matthew Tejada, Director of EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice, will address how the Mid-Atlantic has progressed in the 20 years after the Environmental Justice Executive Order was signed. The Office of Environmental Justice works to establish protection from environmental and health hazards for all people, regardless of race, color, national origin, or income. We hope he will touch on issues such as the consequences of pollution on subsistence fisherman and the potential implications of nutrient offsets and trading on low-income and minority communities. Some workshops at this #ChesForum, such as “Collaborating with the Faith Community” and “Achieving the Goal of Stewardship”, are particularly exciting for us since we’ll recognize co-presenters Joanna Freeman and Shanita Brown, from our very own staff. Additionally, the track session “Communications and Advocacy” is apt given our renewed commitment to communications and social media with the arrival of our new Chesapeake Conservation Corps Volunteer, Payton Brown, who will focus her year on communications at the Alliance.

Make sure to follow along with our Forum developments on facebook and twitter with the hashtag #ChesForum. And tune in to #chesforum on September 26th-28th as we’ll be live tweeting the forum.

Check out tweets and updates from our 2014 Forum Presenters with our Twitter Presenters at CWF 2014 List