2019 Coastal Wetlands Symposium Program

Your guide to the Coast Wetlands Symposium schedule

Audubon Great Lakes, in partnership with the Great Lakes Coastal Assembly and Great Lakes Commission, proudly present the first Great Lakes Coastal Wetlands Symposium, an event for conservation practitioners, scientists, and coastal wetland stakeholders.

A special thank you goes out to the generous sponsors of the 2019 Coastal Wetlands Symposium including the Wildlife Conservation Society, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Blue Accounting, Ducks Unlimited, Ohio Department of Natural Resources – Old Woman Creek, Society of Wetland Scientists, Great Lakes Commission, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Coastal Program, the Upper Mississippi River and Great Lakes Region Joint Venture, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy, and Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Thank you to the planning committee for leadership and expertise.

Registration and more information about the program, accommodations, and travel can be found here: 

Program Schedule 

Wednesday, September 18th

6:00pm – 8:00 pm

Conference Registration (Hotel Lobby)

Thursday, September 19th

7:00am – 8:30am

Exhibitor and Poster Setup

7:00am – 12:00pm        

Registration and Information Desk Open

7:00am – 8:30am


8:30am – 11:30am        

Plenary Sessions (Bald Eagle and Blue Heron rooms)

8:30am – 8:45am         

Welcome: The Honorable Wade Kapuszkiewicz, Mayor of the City of Toledo

8:45am – 9:15am         

Hydrology of the Great Lakes – Drew Gronewold, Associate Professor, University of Michigan

9:15am – 9:45am

Ecology of Great Lakes Coastal Wetlands – Dennis Albert, Senior Researchn Faculty, Oregon State University

9:45am – 10:15am        

Coastal Wetland Monitoring Program Results – Matthew Cooper, Professor, Northland College and Don Uzarski, Director and Professor, Institute of Great Lakes Research, Central Michigan University

15-minute break

10:30am – 11:00am

Climate Change and Birds in the Great Lakes – Chad Wilsey, interim Chief Scientist and Vice President of Conservation Science, National Audubon Society

11:00am – 11:30am

Assessing and Enhancing the Resilience of Coastal Wetlands – Greg Mayne, Great Lakes Program Officer and Daniel Rokitnicki-Wojcik, Coordinator, Environmental Programs, Environment and Climate Change Canada

11:30am – 1:00pm   

Lunch – Lightning Round Presentations – Facilitated by the Society of Wetland Scientists

The Same but Different: Comparing Post Restoration Conditions in the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge - Kate Vogel, University of Michigan

Fyke Nets, are they Enough in a World of Extremes? - Olivia Mitchinson, University of Michigan

Differences in Open and Closed Wetland Units in the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge - Eliza Lugten, University of Michigan

From Cornfield to Wetland: Progress toward Ecological Restoration in a Prairie Pothole Region Wetland Complex - Cheyenne Durant, North Dakota State University

Insight into Water Quality, E. coli, and Genetic Source Tracking in Urban Ponds - Erika Olson, North Dakota University

Understanding Urban Wetland Soil Taxonomy and Development of Redoximorphic Features Utilizing Detention Basin Wet/Dry Cycles - Hannah Ohm, North Dakota State University

Effect of Soluble Salt on the Germination of Thuja occidentalis -Sara Johnson, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Blue Accounting: A New Way to Visualize Coastal Wetlands Investments in the Great Lakes Basin - Stephanie Hickel, The Nature Conservancy

Society of Wetland Scientists North Central Chapter - Christina Hargiss, Society of Wetland Scientists, North Dakota State University

Application of Quality Assurance and Quality Control Principles to Ecological Restoration Monitoring - Brick Fevold, USEPA

1:00pm – 5:00pm

Field Trips to Wetland Sites – see full descriptions (Hotel Lobby)    

6:00pm – 9:00pm

BBQ Dinner – please register in advance (Maumee Bay Event Tent)

Friday, September 20th

7:00am – 12:00pm        

Registration and Information Desk Open (Hotel Lobby)

7:00am – 8:30am

Breakfast (Bald Eagle & Blue Heron Room)

7:15am – 8:00am

Society of Wetland Scientists North Central Chapter Business Meeting (Mainsail Room)

8:30am – 12:00pm        

Plenary Sessions (Bald Eagle and Blue Heron rooms combined)

8:30am – 8:45am

Field Trip Reflections – Jason Hill, Director of Conservation Programs, Ducks Unlimited

8:45am – 9:15am

Blue Accounting: Tracking Progress towards Coastal Wetland Restoration Goals – Michelle Selzer, Lake Coordinator, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

9:15am – 9:45am

Great Lakes Coastal Wetland Collaboration Panel: Aligning Targets for Tracking Progress across State and International Boundaries – moderated by Eric Ellis, Program Manager, Great Lakes Commission

15-minute break

10:00am – 10:20am     

Launch of H2Ohio – Mary Mertz, Director, Ohio Department of Natural Resources

10:20am – 10:50am

Implementation of a Coastal Wetland Landscape Conservation Design in Ohio – Scudder Mackey, Chief, Office of Coastal Management, Ohio Department of Natural Resources

10:50am – 11:10am     

Stakeholder Connections to Ohio’s Coastal Wetlands – Dave Sherman, Wetland Habitat Coordinator, Ohio Department of Natural Resources

11:10am – 11:30am     

Coastal Wetland Functionality with Respect to Nutrient Reduction – Kristin Arend, Research Coordinator, Old Woman Creek National Estuarine Reserve, Ohio Department of Natural Resources

11:30am – 11:50am      

Great Lakes Restoration Action Plan III – Kevin O’Donnell, Physical Scientist, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Great Lakes National Program Office

11:50am – 12:10pm      

Engineering with Nature on the Great Lakes: Initiative Update – Tony Friona, Regional Working Group co-lead, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

20-minute break

12:30pm – 1:30pm      



Track breakouts

White Egret Part 1: Landscape Conservation: From Design to Action (12 minutes each)

Landscape Conservation Design for Saginaw Bay - Western Lake Erie – Christie Deloria, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Saginaw Bay to Western Lake Erie - Ecosystem Service Valuation and Mapping – Lou Nadeau, Eastern Research Group

St. Clair – Detroit River System Initiative’s Coastal Wetland Priority Objective    Assessment – Michelle Selzer, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

Coastal Wetland Restoration Assessment – Kurt Kowalski, U.S. Geological Service

Conservation Opportunities on Great Lakes Islands – Matt Preisser, Michigan     Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

Facilitated discussion by Society of Wetland Scientists

Tern Track Part 1 – Conservation Addressing System Change (12 minutes each)

Changing Paradigm in Coastal Wetland Bird Conservation – Greg Soulliere, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Upper Mississippi Great Lakes Joint Venture

Spatial Priorities for Great Lakes Marsh Bird Conservation – Nicole Michel, National Audubon Society

Waterbird Use in Coastal Wetlands – John Simpson and Brendan Shirkey, Winous Point

Migratory Stopover Habitat in Coastal Areas – Mark Shieldcastle, Black Swamp Bird Observatory

Black Tern Conservation in the Great Lakes - Stephanie Beilke, Audubon Great   Lakes

Facilitated discussion by Greg Souillere

30-minute snack break


Track breakouts

White Egret Part 2: Watershed Improvements for Water, People and Wildlife (12 minutes each)

Recruitment Strategies to Diversify your Stewardship Community – Teri Valenzuela, Audubon Great Lakes

Water Quality Benefits to Connectivity – Matt Kovach, The Nature Conservancy Ohio

Great Lakes Wildlife Restoration Funds – Jeff Finn, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Collaborating with Communities on Coastal Planning and Restoration Efforts –   Alicia Beattie, Chagrin Watershed Partners

Engaging Diverse Communities in Natural Resources – Refugio Mariscal, Audubon Great Lakes

Facilitated discussion by Teri Valenzuela

Tern Track Part 2 – Restoration Best Practices (12 minutes each)

The Great Black Swamp Restoration – Christina Kuchle, Ohio Department of Natural Resources

Best Management Practices for Working with and Restoring Reptile and   Amphibian Habitat in Coastal Wetlands – Dave Mifsud, Herpetological Resource and Management

Sault Tribe’s Collaborative Approach to Invasive Species Management in the     St. Marys River – Dani Fegan, Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians Natural   Resources Department

The Restoration of Mentor Marsh – David Kriska, Cleveland Museum of Natural History

Living Shoreline Solutions – Scott Bartkowski, Living Shoreline Solutions

Facilitated discussion by Janice Kerns and Dani Fegan


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