Katrina began her work with California water issues in 1994 as a water resources analyst at the Environmental Defense Fund. Following a series of storms in the winter of 1996-1997, Katrina served as the principle coordinator of a new EDF initiative to develop flood management strategies based on large-scale ecosystem restoration. Seeking to bridge the gap between policy and science by studying flood management and river restoration practices that more closely mimic natural floodplain dynamics, Katrina joined UC Berkeley’s Energy and Resource Group (ERG) in 1998. Though the generous support of Switzer and EPA STAR fellowships, she collaborated with Prof. Matt Kondolf (UCB), Prof. John Harte (UCB), and Prof. Jeff Mount (UCD) to investigate how flood and water management activities impact fluvial processes (hydrologic and geomorphic function), focusing on the Stanislaus River. Katrina is co-author with Matt Kondolf and Anthony Falzone of the report: Reconnaissance-Level Assessment of Channel Change and Spawning Habitat on the Stanislaus River Below Goodwin Dam.
Through the support of a Switzer Leadership Grant, Katrina began her work with the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) in Nevada City, CA as Senior River Scientist where she focused on floodplain management and floodplain restoration opportunities in the Lower Yuba, FERC relicensing strategies to restore more natural flow regimes, and Sierra climate change issues. Following the Switzer Foundation’s initial support for this work, SYRCL implemented a very successful pilot project for riparian enhancement on the Lower Yuba River in 2011 – the first restoration project of its kind on this highly impacted river.
Katrina has expanded her former work as an environmental educator through co-creating “Immersion Camps” on the Smith River --- experiential environmental education experiences where students snorkel the river and learn about river processes, river function, river biology, fish surveying techniques, and group leadership skills. After eight years of work on the Smith River, in 2013 Immersion Camp was extended to the Yuba River with the added goal of growing a community versed in “River Speak,” a language of reading and understanding the river. This river safety work includes the creation of multimedia outreach materials for local NGOs, county officials, and news entities. (See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lZW99TSQ_g&feature=youtu.be)
Along with her river education efforts, Katrina continues to consult to a variety of clients on river science and other resource management issues, leads tours to the Yuba River, and is currently working on a new initiative regarding Sierra foothill living and fire management.
Fellow at a Glance
Natural Resource Management