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Colorado's public lands are faced with new challenges but water and land management depend on working together. Read about the relationship between water and land in Colorado and how Coloradans are converging to restore Colorado's public lands in the Spring 2018 issue of Headwaters magazine.

Browse articles and find a flipbook of the magazine here.

Connecting the Drops

connectingdropslogo4.1Bringing you the reporting you crave over the radio airways with extras and archives on our website. Visit the audio archives or listen to the latest story on the connection between Colorado's forests, watersheds, and forest fires:

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Water Education Colorado

Welcome Nicole Seltzer!

By Jayla Ryan Poppleton

The Colorado Foundation for Water Education's new executive director, Nicole Seltzer, began Dec. 3.

Nicole joins the Foundation after spending nearly five years at the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District. She says one of her missions is to expand the Foundation's circle of support to the general public.

As Northern's public affairs coordinator, her work included building an external relations program to develop new ways of communicating with water users. She also served on the boards of the Big Thompson Watershed Forum, the Grand County Water Information Network and the Colorado Watershed Assembly.

Nicole grew up in Kansas City, Kan., but she's quickly adopted one of the state's most pressing challenges as a personal passion.

‘Balancing our economic needs and economic development with available water supplies is a huge challenge,’ says Nicole.

‘We need to find a sustainable way to provide water to all the people who want to call Colorado home. How can we use the same stream for recreation, fish habitat, water use? It's a challenge, especially working off the prior appropriations system in a time of short water and great change.’

At Northern, she was right in the middle of such competing interests, and it was a tough choice to leave. But the Foundation beckoned, appealing to her desire to work cooperatively with a broad range of Coloradans with widely-variant viewpoints. The Foundation is a statewide non-advocacy non-profit organization the Colorado General Assembly established through legislation to educate citizens about the state's most precious resource.

In her new role, she will strive to take the organization's past success and build on it, finding an effective and sustainable way to achieve its mission. One of her goals is to reach a broader general public with water-related information.

‘We have an opportunity to really diversify our membership and provide information on water issues to a much wider audience,’ says Nicole.

‘We're well known within water-provider circles, but we need to do a better job of making resources available outside of those circles. Getting information out to the general public is one of the hardest things to do. How can we translate the message so my neighbors in Longmont can understand it?’

Nicole also wants to reach out at the Capitol.

‘The 2008 session is supposed to be a big water year in the state legislature. We hope to get involved a little more and provide them with accurate, balanced information on water issues in the state. They have enough people lobbying them. They could really benefit from an organization that's truly working from an unbiased perspective.’

In her 32 years, Nicole has lived in Vermont and New York, as well as her native Kansas. After receiving a bachelor's degree in environmental science at the University of Kansas, she went on to complete a master's degree in water resources at the University of Vermont. Later, she worked for the Environmental Protection Agency in New York providing community outreach for Superfund sites.

She enjoys gardening and fixing up her house in old-town Longmont. She also tries to get out on Colorado's rivers three or four times a year on raft trips with friends. And she spends quite a bit of time visiting her sister and three nephews in Phoenix.

Nicole's hope is that she can help keep the growing conversation going.

‘People need to talk about water in this state and understand it as an issue that has ties to economic development, wildlife habitat, conservation of our lands and tourism. Water is integral to so much of what makes Colorado a great place to be. We need to make sure to keep it front and center.’

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