Watershed Leadership

Building Human Capital For Successful Watershed Management

Collaborative watershed management is a key solution in addressing non-point pollution of surface waters in the North Central Region and beyond. It entails engaging key stakeholder groups to identify water quality impairments, develop water quality goals, and collaborate on strategies and actions to address the impairments.

Skilled leadership is essential for the success of this approach. Watershed and conservation professionals, farmers, non-operating landowners, civic leaders, and committed residents all can play valuable roles as watershed leaders.

The North Central Region Water Network and our member land-grant universities are building “human capital” for successful watershed management, focused especially on watershed professionals and farmer leaders. By strengthening knowledge, skills, and networks through training, peer learning, and resource development, we are bolstering the capacity of watershed leaders to collaborate with stakeholders in reducing non-point pollution of lakes, rivers, and streams.

Current Projects

The Confluence for Watershed Leaders

The Confluence for Watershed Leaders is a collaborative and community of practice for people working for healthy watersheds in the Great Lakes, Mississippi River, and Red River Basins. It builds the capacity of watershed professionals and engaged farmers through peer learning and professional development. More at watershedleaders.org >>

Farmer-to-Farmer Conservation Learning and Leadership

The Network is involved in multi-state, collaborative efforts to facilitate farmer-to-farmer learning and empower more farmers to lead their communities toward a future of thriving farms, healthy landscapes, and clean water. More >>

Resources and OpportunitiesĀ 

If you lead projects in watershed management, check out these resources and opportunities that serve to inform and empower you in your work.

One Good Idea

One Good Idea is an online clearinghouse of videos and podcasts that feature farmers sharing their experiences implementing soil and water conservation practices. With an emphasis on practical, evidence-based ideas, the platform facilitates peer learning among farmers and amplifies how farmers are making a difference for the operations, their communities, and the world. More at goodideafarm.org >>

Life Hacks over Lunch: A Meet-up Series for Watershed Professionals

This free, virtual meet-up series is a peer-learning opportunity for watershed professionals to share ideas and advice for solving real-life challenges of watershed projects. Learn more >>

Tap Your Potential: A Training to Grow Farmer Leadership in Watershed Management

This curriculum is designed for use by outreach professionals and educators who work in agricultural watersheds and seek to empower more farmers to get involved in watershed management in their communities. Learn more >>

Human Capital blog

This blog features insights and stories to help watershed leaders tap their true potential for achieving clean water in the Midwest and beyond. It is part of The Confluence for Watershed Leaders. Peruse posts >>

Previous Projects

The Mississippi and Atchafalaya River Basins (MARB) Watershed Leadership Network

This was an inclusive group of farmer and non-farmer leaders who are working in their communities and states to reduce nutrient pollution to the Mississippi River and shrink the hypoxic zone in the Gulf of Mexico. More >>