Current Conference - University Council on Water Resources

2016 UCOWR/NIWR Conference Program now available!

Check out the abstracts of presenters.
2016 UCOWR/NIWR Conference Proceedings now available! 

 

REGISTRATION

Online registration is available here.

 

EXHIBITORS/SPONSORS - Sponsorship opportunities are still available.  Learn more here.

A special thank you to this year's conference sponsors!

Platinum Sponsor:  Mississippi State University Delta Research & Extension Center

   

     

 

 

Silver Sponsor:  The Ivanhoe Foundation

    

 

 

 

 

INFORMATION FOR PRESENTERS

PLENARY SPEAKERS

LODGING 

The conference is being held at the Hilton Pensacola Beach Hotel in Pensacola Beach, Florida.  A block of rooms has been reserved.  A limited number of rooms are being held for our group.  The deadline for reservations at the special group rate is Friday, May 20, 2016.  All rooms will be released to the general public on May 21.  Learn more here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TRAVEL INFORMATION (flights and shuttle service)

POST-CONFERENCE FIELD TRIP

Thursday, June 23:  Gulf Islands National Seashore - Naval Live Oaks Nature Preserve - guided walk, interpretive center and seining for marine life.  $15.00 registration fee.  Space is limited. 

FUN RUN/WALK

Wednesday, June 22, 6:00 a.m.  No registration required. 

 

QUESTIONS?

Contact Melissa at the UCOWR headquarters at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 618-536-7571. 

 


 

For a detailed (preliminary) conference schedule, please go here

 

2016 UCOWR/NIWR CONFERENCE SCHEDULE
     
Monday, June 20: Early Registration 3:00 - 6:00 pm
     
Tuesday, June 21: Registration 7:30 am - 3:30 pm
  Breakfast 7:30 am
 

 

Conference Welcome/Plenary Session I:  Jim Giattini, Director, Water Protection Division, EPA Region 4

8:30 - 9:40 am
  Break 9:40 - 10:00 am
  Concurrent Technical Sessions 10:00 - 11:30 am
  Lunch on your own 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
  UCOWR Delegate Business Luncheon 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
  Concurrent Technical Sessions 1:00 - 2:05 pm
  Break 2:05 - 2:20 pm
  Concurrent Technical Sessions 2:20 - 3:25 pm
  Welcome Reception & Poster Session 6:00 - 7:30 pm
     
Wednesday, June 22: Fun Run/Walk on the beach 6:00 am
  Registration 7:30 am - 3:30 pm
  Breakfast 7:30 am

Plenary Session II:  Warren Hall Medal Recipient, Dr. Norman Whittlesey; PhD Dissertation Award Recipient, Miguel Morales, University of Florida; and PhD Dissertation Award Recipient, David Warsinger, MIT

8:30 - 9:40 am
  Break 9:40 - 10:00 am
  Concurrent Technical Sessions 10:00 - 11:30 am
  Lunch on your own 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
  Student Career Panel (with lunch) 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
  Concurrent Technical Sessions 1:00 - 2:05 pm
  Break 2:05 - 2:20 pm
  Concurrent Technical Sessions 2:20 - 3:25 pm
  Awards Banquet 6:00 - 7:30 pm
     
Thursday, June 23: Breakfast 7:30 am
 

 

Plenary Session III:  Laura Bowie, Executive Director, Gulf of Mexico Alliance

8:30 - 9:40 am
  Break 9:40 - 10:00 am
  Concurrent Technical Sessions 10:00 - 11:30 am
  Lunch on your own 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
  Post-Conference Field Trip 1:30 - 4:30 pm
     
     
See you in Fort Collins, Colorado in 2017!

 

CONFERENCE VENUE LODGING

The conference is being held at the Hilton Pensacola Beach Hotel in Pensacola Beach, Florida.  A block of rooms has been reserved.   Rooms are on a first-come, first-served basis.

The deadline for making reservations at the special group rate is Friday, May 20, 2016, or until filled.  On May 21, all rooms will be released to the general public and regular rates will go into effect.

The following room rate is available to conference participants Monday, 6/20 through Wednesday, 6/22: 

  • Standard room (non-ocean view):  $199 + tax 
  • Gulf-front room (ocean-view):  $219 + tax  (a very limited # of ocean-view rooms are still available)

Book your room online HERE or call the hotel at 850-916-2999 (ask for Bridgette in Group Reservations).   The group code is 'UCO.'  *The conference rate is available 3 days pre- and post- the conference dates, based on hotel availability.

OTHER LODGING OPTIONS

In Pensacola Beach - next door to conference venue

Near Pensacola Airport - 25 minutes from conference venue

 

CAMPING

Fort Pickens Campground is located about 3.5 miles from the conference venue, Hilton Pensacola Beach.  Campground sites are $26/night (electric & water included).  For more information, visit their website.

 

Pensacola International Airport (PNS)

Major Airlines flying into Pensacola: American, Delta, Silver, Southwest, United, US Airways

Non-stop service from: Dallas, Houston, Nashville, Chicago, Washington DC, Charlotte & Atlanta

The conference venue, Hilton Pensacola Beach, is 13 miles from Pensacola International Airport.  Get directions HERE.  The average taxi fare to the conference venue is $30.  There are various taxi services at the airport.  If you prefer a shuttle service, this company is recommended by the conference venue - The Airport Connection ($35 one way - shuttles can be pre-arranged online).

Uber serves Pensacola.  Fare estimated from website to hotel from airport: uberX $21-28, uberXL $34-44

QUESTIONS?

Contact Melissa at the UCOWR headquarters at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 618-536-7571.

Thursday, June 23, 2016 - 1:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Don't miss this opportunity to learn more about Gulf Coast maritime forest ecosystems and the marine life that calls Pensacola Bay and Santa Rosa Sound home.
 
A guided tour of the interpretive center will be followed by an easy hike.  Plant and animal species found in the Gulf Islands National Sea Shore will be highlighted along the path and questions answered about this unique ecosystem.  Dr. Alexis Janosik, University of West Florida, will provide a session on marine life and current research conducted along the Gulf of Mexico.  Field trip participants will have the opportunity to get up close and personal with marine life through seining of near shore waters.
 
 

Gulf Islands’ Sites & Sounds:  Gulf Islands National Seashore stretches 160 miles along the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico in Florida and Mississippi.  From its sandy beaches to its maritime forests, Gulf Islands is a place like no other.  Take a leisurely stroll on the boardwalk and see some of the plants and animals that call the seashore home.

Seagrass Safari: An Interactive Exploration of Our Coastal Nurseries:  The emerald green waters that surround Gulf Islands National Seashore are delicate, dynamic habitats teaming with life.  Wade into the water and learn more about the creatures that call this area home.  

Registration Fee:  $15.00 (includes bus transportation)  Please select the field trip option during the online registration process to reserve your spot.  The deadline to register for the field trip option is Tuesday, June 14, 2016.

* Participants should wear comfortable shoes, preferably close toe, hat, sunscreen, and bring drinking water.

* If you would like to help seine, wear clothes you don’t mind getting wet.

* Bring binoculars to take advantage of birding opportunities.

* Handicap accessible walking tour is available - please let us know if this is needed.

Limited to 40 participants.

http://thesouthern.com/sports/outdoors/gulf-islands-national-seashore-stark-but-stunning/article_9bb665a3-725f-531f-911f-e96d6f26c05a.html

Exhibitor and sponsorship opportunities are available at the 2016 UCOWR/NIWR Conference.

EXHIBITORS

Exhibitor Registration Fee:  $1,300

  • 6-foot draped table and two chairs
  • Complimentary registration for one booth attendant
  • Additional booth attendants may register for $300
  • Electricity at exhibit table:  $50
  • Deadline for exhibitor registration:  Friday, April 15, 2016

SPONSOR LEVELS

Diamond:  $10,000  (UCOWR Awards Banquet Sponsor)

  • Sponsorship in banquet name
  • Full-page, inner cover ad with logo in conference and Awards Banquet programs
  • Logo prominently displayed on UCOWR conference website
  • Insert materials (provided by sponsor) placed in registrant packets
  • Materials displayed on sponsor literature table
  • Sponsorship signage displayed at Registration and Awards Banquet
  • Three (3) complimentary conference registrations 

Platinum:  $5,000  (Welcome Reception Sponsor) - THANK YOU to Mississippi State University Delta Research & Extension Center for your generous support!  

  • Sponsorship in welcome reception name
  • Full page ad with logo in conference program
  • Logo prominently displayed on UCOWR conference website
  • Materials displayed on sponsor literature table
  • Sponsorship signage displayed during conference welcome reception
  • Two (2) complimentary conference registrations

Gold:  $3,000  (Breakfast Sponsor)

  • Sponsorship signage displayed at all conference breakfasts
  • Logo and half page ad in conference program
  • Logo on UCOWR conference website
  • Materials displayed on sponsor literature talbe
  • One (1) complimentary conference registration

Silver:  $2,000  (Refreshment Break Sponsor) - THANK YOU to The Ivanhoe Foundation for your generous support!  

  • Sponsorship signage displayed during refreshment breaks
  • Logo in conference program and on UCOWR conference website
  • One (1) complimentary conference registration

 

 

 

 

Bronze:  $1,000  (Poster Session Sponsor)

  • Sponsorship signage displayed during poster session 
  • Logo in conference program and on UCOWR conference website

Friend:  $500-$999  (General Conference Support)

  • Logo in conference program and on UCOWR conference website

Gift:  $100-$450

  • Name in conference program and logo on UCOWR conference website

 

EXHIBITOR/SPONSOR REGISTRATION FORM 

Questions?  Contact Melissa Pind at 618-536-7571 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

TO REGISTER: 

  • Mail registration form (above) and payment to address on the form; 
  • Fax form with credit card information to 618-453-2671; or
  • Call Melissa at 618-536-7571 to pay with a credit card over the phone.

Join us on Wednesday, June 22, at 6:00 a.m. for an informal fun run/walk.  This will be an opportunity to socialize with other conference participants in a fun, active, informal setting.  No registration is necessary -- just show up!  More details will be posted soon.  

Laura Bowie, Executive Director, Gulf of Mexico Alliance

Laura Bowie serves as the Executive Director for the Gulf of Mexico Alliance, a partnership of the five Gulf States with the goal to significantly increase regional collaboration to enhance the ecological and economic health of the Gulf of Mexico.   

Laura began her career in Houston, Texas, at Texas Eastern Pipeline Company as a remediation specialist on their PCB Task Force.  Later, Laura served Continental Airlines as a Senior Manager in the Environmental Affairs Department.  Since moving to Mississippi, Laura has supported local non-profits spear-heading watershed and grant programs.  In 2010, Laura was the first employee hired by the Gulf of Mexico Alliance to take the loose network of partnerships into a formal not-for-profit organization. 

Laura holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Mississippi State University and a master’s degree in environmental management from the University of Houston.  Laura is active in local civic and education organizations.  She and her husband John have been married 16 years and have two sons, Andrew and Mitchell.

Jim Giattina, Director, Water Protection Division, EPA Region 4

Jim Giattina is the Director of the Water Protection Division of the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Southeastern Regional Office in Atlanta, Georgia.  He is responsible for administering all Regional EPA water programs related to the Clean Water Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act.

Jim has been working in the environmental protection arena for 37 years and he has been with EPA for 32 years. The last 14 years, he has served the Agency in his current capacity in Atlanta.

Jim is a native of Birmingham, Alabama.  He received his Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Alabama and his Master of Science in Biology from the Center for Environmental Studies at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

 

Dr. Norman Whittlesey, 2016 Warren A. Hall Medal Recipient

Norman Whittlesey is Professor (Emeritus) of Agricultural Economics at Washington State University, where he has been since 1964.  During his tenure at Washington State University he has been heavily involved in research and teaching related to production agriculture, irrigation development, water policy and environmental economics throughout the West.  Studies of water value, allocation, and conservation have been central to research and policy development activities during the past two decades. He has authored over two hundred publications related to these fields.  In 1987 he won the prestigious Award for Professional Excellence from the American Agricultural Economics Association in recognition of his distinguished policy contribution for work in water policy related to irrigation development in the west.  In 1998 he was honored as a Fellow of the American Agricultural Economics Association in recognition for years of path breaking research in water policy and irrigation management. He served as vice president and president of the Western Agricultural Economics Association, and in 2004 he received the Distinguished Scholar award from the WAEA. In 2014 he received the Legacy of Excellence award for emeritus faculty from Washington State University.  In 2015 he was appointed to the Hall of Fame for alumni in the Department of Agriculture and Resource Economics, Colorado State University. He has been involved in many consulting efforts. These include three (U.S. Supreme) Court cases involving disputes between states over allocation of cross border rivers. He has served on numerous regional and national committees and task forces engaged in policy development for solving problems of natural resource management and the environment. 

 

Dr. Miguel Morales, University of Florida - PhD Dissertation Award Recipient

Miguel Morales was born in Caracas, Venezuela to a Cuban father and Venezuelan mother. He received his Ph.D. from the Department of Environmental Engineering Sciences at the University of Florida under the advisement of Dr. James Heaney. Miguel has co-authored twelve peer-reviewed journal publications focusing on methodologies to estimate water use and data-drive optimization approaches to target customers for water demand management practices. He has worked with utilities across the state of Florida, water management districts, and regional planning agencies during his time with the Conserve Florida Water Clearinghouse. He has also been a co-investigator on studies for the Water Research Foundation, City of Sanford & St. Johns River Water Management District, and Florida Energy Systems Consortium. Miguel is a founding member and past president of the Association of Cuban Student Engineers, a student organization that provides engineering students with the opportunity to conduct research on Cuba’s infrastructure. He is also a partner at WaterAIM, a consulting firm which provides data-driven analyses and planning services for water demand management and water.

 

Dr. David Warsinger, MIT - PhD Dissertation Award Recipient

David Warsinger completed his B.S. and M.Eng at Cornell, and his PhD in Mechanical Engineering at MIT. He completed his graduate studies in a combined 3 years. Prior to starting his PhD, David designed heating and cooling systems and performed energy and sustainability analysis at the engineering consulting firm Arup. David is a coauthor of 18 published and 6 submitted conference or journal papers and a co-inventor on 13 filed or awarded patents. David cofounded Coolify, a startup providing cold storage for farmers in developing economies, which won the national competition for the $100k Ag Innovation Prize. Recently, David received the Institute Award for Best Research Mentor for Undergraduate Students at MIT. He has also received awards for the highest GPA in his class (M.Eng.), numerous grants, and 8 presenter awards at conferences.

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