Reimagining The Rural West – WGA Workshop- Today !!


This is going on today in Post Falls Idaho… you can watch it on Youtube.

You can also make comments on Youtube. But I’m interested in your thoughts here.  Which one did you watch and what did you think? You can watch them later as well.

Here are a couple of that look interesting (including participation by sometime commenter Chelsea McIver, and two R-1 FS folks):

10:15 a.m. Natural Resource Management and Infrastructure Challenges: Responsible management of forests and rangelands relies on high-quality local infrastructure. The lack of sawmills, timber processing machinery, and adequate roads all reduce the business case for forest and rangeland management activities – from traditional timber sales to innovative forest thinning and rangeland management projects. Panelists will discuss historical changes to natural resources markets, strategies to create markets supporting ecosystem-based goals, and federal programs that can aid rural infrastructure challenges. Moderator: Idaho Governor Brad Little. Panelists: Matt Krumenauer, Vice President Special Projects, U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities; Chelsea Pennick McIver, Research Analyst, Policy Analysis Group, University of Idaho; Cheryl Probert, Forest Supervisor, Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests, U.S. Forest Service; Tom Schultz, VP of Government Affairs, Idaho Forest Group.

2:30 p.m. Community Collaboration and Revitalization in North Idaho: Through the North Idaho Tourism Alliance (NITA), 12 communities are working together to capitalize on their region’s assets, including spectacular scenery, access to outdoor recreation and local history. Panelists will discuss how their communities have evolved and how collaboration is helping to build a more vibrant economic future. Panelists: Stephanie Sims, Executive Director, International Selkirk Loop & NITA Board Chair; Colleen Rosson, Executive Director, Silver Valley Economic Development Corporation & NITA Board Vice Chair.

1:00 p.m. Broadening the Outdoor Recreation Economy: Outdoor recreation draws people from urban areas to rural communities, bringing economic benefits and bridging the urban-rural divide. To grow the outdoor recreation economy, rural communities need infrastructure, workforce, and businesses to support visitors and local residents. This panel will explore how different organizations are working to build and strengthen recreation economies. Moderator: Jim Ogsbury, Executive Director, Western Governors’ Association Panelists: Lindsey Shirley, University Outreach & Engagement Associate Provost, Oregon State University Extension Service; Jorge Guzmán, Founder and Executive Director, Vive NW; Tara McKee, Program Manager, Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation; Joe Alexander, Region 1 Director of Recreation, Minerals, Lands, Heritage, and Wilderness, U.S. Forest Service.

2:10 p.m. Cooperative Models Across the Rural West: Cooperative ownership and funding systems support local food systems, infrastructure assets, housing initiatives and a host of other critical efforts in the rural West. Panelists will discuss how cooperative models can support diverse rural development goals and examine how federal and state policies influence cooperative efforts. Moderator: Jim Ogsbury, Executive Director, Western Governors’ Association. Panelists: Lori Capouch, Rural Development Director, North Dakota Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives; Tim Freeburg, Board Member, Pacific Northwest Farmers Cooperative; Kate LaTour, Government Relations Manager, National Cooperative Business Association; Tim O’Connell, West Region Coordinator, Rural Development Innovation Center, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Check it out and tell us what you think!


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