First Director Hired in California
The Freshwater Trust has hired a new Director in Sacramento, California.
Erik Ringelberg will lead the organization’s business and program efforts in the state. He will be working with California-based regulated entities, the State’s regulatory agency personnel, regional stakeholders, agricultural producers, and conservation funders to implement watershed conservation and restoration programs that include robust measurement and tracking of ecological outcomes.
“We’re thrilled to have someone of Erik’s caliber blazing the path for us in California,” said Alan Horton, managing director with The Freshwater Trust. “We know that many of the solutions we’ve designed and implemented for Oregon and Idaho can be applicable for the Golden State – a place in need of water quality and quantity improvements.”
Ringelberg will focus on the evolving groundwater regulations, water quality trading markets, and alternative watershed solutions for the state.
Since beginning his career as an environmental scientist in 1992, he has directed and advised nonprofit, tribal, and local government agencies on water quality policy, fisheries, habitat and wetlands restoration, and hazardous waste issues.
“The Freshwater Trust brings tremendous technical expertise to California, and this is an exciting opportunity to lead this program in Sacramento,” said Ringelberg.
In January, The Freshwater Trust signed a lease on a 1,600 square foot space in the Boulevard Park area. The Sacramento office is expected to hold 6 to 8 staffers in the coming years. In addition to Portland and Sacramento, the organization has offices in Boise, Idaho, and Ashland, Oregon.
“Our Sacramento office will showcase the tools that The Trust has to offer to better manage our water and habitat,” said Ringelberg.
“These tools will be applied not just at the regional planning level, but more importantly at the individual farm and river scale.”
Ringelberg has a bachelor’s degree in Microbiology from Colorado State University and a master’s in Environmental Science from Lesley College in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He is also a PhD candidate in Riparian and Wetland Ecology at the University of Montana.
He’s received grant funding from many government entities, published articles on California’s water crisis, been invited to speak at conferences on a wide range of topics, and served on technical advisory committees, regional water planning commissions, and watershed and wetland councils.
“When we were hiring for this position, we were looking for someone who could really be a strong advocate for smarter, outcome-focused restoration in the state,” said Horton. “We found that and more in Erik. It was clear he had the ability to bring together a wide array of entities for the benefit of a watershed.”
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