From Professionals to Water Leaders

The 2012 class of Water Leaders poses during their first 'day of school' in early Fall 2011.

Who makes decisions about your water in Colorado? Who engineers water projects, communicates with stakeholders, lobbies for legislation, fights for water rights and educates communities? Many people do, of course—there are water leaders across the state. The Colorado Foundation for Water Education is cultivating that leadership through the Water Leaders program—just last week, 15 professionals graduated from the program, making an all-time total of 66 graduates.

“The Water Leaders Program is an amazing opportunity for water professionals from any number of diverse backgrounds to learn leadership skills, gain professional knowledge, and network with peers in an open and educational environment,” said Greg Johnson, a recent Water Leader graduate and employee of the Colorado Water Conservation Board.

Water Leaders is open to mid-level professionals in Colorado who are interested in water resources and career development. All Water Leaders exhibit leadership potential within their own organizations, as well as interest in seeking leadership roles on public boards and commissions. Throughout the course, Water Leaders focus on personal and professional growth —eventually graduating with a better understanding of their strengths, skills and challenges.

“The experience allowed me to reflect upon and appreciate my unique qualities. It gave me the confidence and tools to practice those strengths within the workplace and beyond. I recommend Water Leaders to anyone who is curious about themselves and others,” said Kristin Maharg, manager of the Water Leaders program at CFWE.

In addition to assessments, trainings, coaching, and shadowing, the Water Leaders 2012 class completed two group projects in order to increase community engagement around water issues. One group created the Water 2012 “A Day without Water” video contest, while the other wrote a series of blog articles—most of which will be posted here every other week for the coming two months. The blog posts provide personal perspectives on the world of Colorado water. Articles include:

  • Knights of the (Water) Roundtable
  • What’s in a name?
  • Water in Two Different Generations
  • Reflections from the South Slope
  • And one mystery post!!—to be revealed the first week in May.

Interested in becoming a Water Leader?  CFWE will accept applications for the next class in fall of 2012!

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