Grand Staircase-Escalante Symposium 2023

Ways of Understanding and Protecting Land and Water Resources in the Grand Staircase-Escalante Region, Symposium 2023

March 16-17, 2023 | Escalante, UT

Hosted by EWRP








Presentation video links are provided in the agenda below for each session. 

Day 1 (March 16th) 

Introductory Remarks (Videos available here)

Linda Whitham — The Nature Conservancy, Central Canyonlands Program Manager

Laura Daniel-Davis — US Department of Interior, Assistant Secretary for Land & Minerals Management

Indigenous Perspectives (Videos available here)

Autumn Gillard — Pipe Spring National Monument, Administrative Support, “Southern Paiute astronomy

Davina Smith — Dine’ Nation, board of Grand Staircase Escalante Partners, “Perspectives of a Dine’ Land Steward”

Max Early — Laguna Pueblo, “Poems on land and forest animals”

Clark Tenakhongva – “Hopi planting and crops”

Moderator: Georgie Pongyesva

Music by Clark Tenakhongva, Hopi musician

Wildlife  (Videos available here)

Olivia Carril, PhD — Bee Scientist and Consultant, “Exploring plants and their pollinators in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument:  A celebration of mutualisms”

Nicki Frey — Utah State University, Dept. Wildland Resources, Extension Associate Professor, “Breeding Birds in the Escalante River after Russian Olive Removal”

Macie Monahan — Bryce Canyon National Park, Wildlife Biologist Fellow, “How Bryce Canyon NP plans to mitigate Utah prairie dog road fatalities using wildlife underpasses”

Moderator – Jake Schoppe (Dixie National Forest)

Water (Videos available here)

Crystal Tulley-Cordova — Navajo Nation Department of Water Resources, Principal Hydrologist, “Water and climate”

Laura Norman — U.S. Geological Survey, Western Geographic Science Center, Tucson, Research Physical Scientist, “Stream restoration and detention structures”

Seth Arens — Western Water Assessment, University of Colorado & University of Utah, Research Scientist, “Ecological succession in emerging tributaries to Glen Canyon with focus on Escalante region”

Larry Stevens – Spring Stewardship Institute, Director, “Spring ecosystem assessment and rehabilitation prioritization using GSENM and related data”

Moderator – Lydia Joukowsky (Utah State University, graduate student)

Research (Videos available here)

Ryan Nourai — Grand Staircase Escalante Partners Board Member, Columbia University MFA Candidate, “The Role of Affordable Housings in Contemporary Conservation”

David Polly — Indiana University Dept of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences, Professor, “Paleontology of the Grand Staircase-Escalante Region”

Tara Bishop — USGS-Moab, Ecologist, “Generalized State and Transition Models for Grand Staircase-Escalante landscape management using Ecological Site Groups”

Moderator – Kevin Berend (Grand-Staircase Escalante Partners)

Day 2 (March 17th)

Vegetation  (Videos available here)

Lisbeth Louderback — Natural History Museum of Utah, Curator of Archaeology; University of Utah, Associate Professor of Anthropology, “Detecting Domestication of the Four Corners Potato (Solanum jamesii Torr.)” (co-authors:  Bruce Pavlik, Alfonso del Rio, John Bamberg, and Cynthia Wilson)

Stan Kitchen — US Forest Service (ret.), Research Botanist and Ecologist, “Frequent Surface Fire: a Keystone Process in pre-1900 Southern Utah Forests”

Steve Leavitt — Brigham Young University, Asst. Professor of Biology & Curator of Lichens, “Lichen diversity in biological soil crusts”

Moderator – Marc Coles-Ritchie (Grand Canyon Trust)

History (Videos available here)

John Leshy — Univ of Calif emeritus professor of law; past Solicitor U.S. Department of Interior, “History of GSENM establishment”

Nizhoni Tallas — University of Arizona, School of Natural Resources and the Environment, Graduate Student & Research Assistant, “It’s a Sign: Understanding Variations in Telling of Indigenous Stories Within Public Outdoor Spaces”

Tamra Borchardt — Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah, Tribal Vice Chairperson & Indian Peaks Band Chairperson, “Termination of the Indian Peaks Band to Federal Recognition; including historical aspects that will examine environmental and socio-economics of the Indian Peaks Band”

Moderator – Julie Suhr Pierce (Natural Resource Economist)

Engagement (Videos available here)

Audrey Kruse — Grand Canyon Trust, Community Engagement Director, Community Engagement at the Grand Canyon Trust

Kaitlin Martin — Grand Staircase Escalante Partners, Stewardship Programs Manager, “Volunteering work of Grand Staircase Escalante Partners”

Artemisia Turiya — Bureau of Land Management, Paria River District, Planning and Environmental Coordinator, Your Contributions to BLM Planning: Tools for Presenting Information and Knowledge