Wild Ideas for Clean Water — June 27, 2017

Wild Ideas for Clean Water took place on June 27th, 2017 see some highlights below and see photos on our Facebook page. 

Wild Ideas for Clean Water
June 27th, 2017 5:30-8:00 PM
The Frontier @ RTP
800 Park Offices Dr., Durham

Where has your water been? Where does it go? What happens to it along the way? Who makes sure it’s safe for you to use? Get ready to meet your watershed with Triangle Land Conservancy’s Wild Ideas for Clean Water!

M.C. Dale Threatt-Taylor- Director of the Wake Soil and Water Conservation District

Dale Threatt-Taylor is the Director of the Wake Soil and Water Conservation District and Wake County’s Soil and Water Conservation Department. She received a B.S. in Conservation from NC State University in 1991 and a Masters of Environmental Management from Duke University in 2011.

Her daily goal is to make sure that Soil and Water Conservation is the most effective department in Wake County Government, helping both land and landowner. Dale’s long range goal is that Wake will be the best Soil and Water Conservation District in the nation. Dale is the current Past President of the NC Hugh Hammond Bennett Chapter of Soil and Water Conservation Society. She currently serves on the Conservation Trust for North Carolina Board of Directors. Dale also serves as Vice-Chair of the City of Oaks Foundation Board of Trustees.

Dale wants everyone in the city, county, state and nation to understand that locally-led conservation begins with an individual, and that all of our conservation work matters.

Ed Buchan, Environmental Coordinator, City of Raleigh Public Utilities Dept.

Edward works with the City of Raleigh Public Utilities Department where he has been the Environmental Coordinator for the past 11 years.  Prior to working with the City of Raleigh, Edward worked with an environmental consulting firm and with the North Carolina Division of Water Resources as a planner.

In his role with the City of Raleigh Public Utilities Department, Edward is responsible for managing the City’s drinking watershed protection program, water quality monitoring efforts, long range water supply planning and recently established disadvantaged customer assistance program.  He also manages the Department’s public outreach programs as well as handling media inquiries and responses.

Edward is also passionate about mountain biking, beer appreciation and getting his daughter to not be afraid of snakes.
Sandy Sweitzer, Executive Director, Triangle Land Conservancy

Sandy joined TLC in July of 2013 as Director of Development and became the Executive Director in April 2015. She brings over 30 years of nonprofit experience, 20 of those years in Durham. Sandy has experience working in conservation from her prior capacity as associate director of philanthropy for The Nature Conservancy, NC Chapter. Drawing on a deep well of experience founding and managing two non­profit start­ups, she is adept at developing effective strategies for identifying, cultivating and soliciting partnerships from a wide range of community members and organizations. As Executive Director, she helps to develop policies and partnership to make the region a healthier and more vibrant place to live, work and play.

Zulayka Santiago, Founding Member, Earthseed Land Cooperative

Zulayka Santiago is a founding member of Earthseed Land Cooperative, a collective made up of farmers, entrepreneurs, professionals, and teachers who are currently engaged in creating alternative models for sustainability, equity, and cooperation within communities of color.  For the last 20 years Zulayka has devoted her professional career to various projects relating to social justice, philanthropy, cooperatives and community engagement.  She is currently the Director of the NC Oral Health Collaborative where she works to convene a diverse group of stakeholders committed to building health equity for all North Carolinians.  Zulayka holds a Master of Public Administration Degree from University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill with a Certificate in Nonprofit Management and received her undergraduate degree in Pan-African Studies from Barnard College, Columbia University. Zulayka is part of the inaugural class of the Leaders for Health Equity Fellowship Program through George Washington University.  She is also a part of the 06-08 William C. Friday Fellowship for Human Relations through the Wildacres Leadership Initiative.

Ryan Kolarov-Owner/Brewer, Neuse River Brewing Company

Ryan Kolarov is a North Carolina native whose travels lead him to the Caribbean for several years where he developed an appreciation for the simple life. There he met his wife Jennifer, a Northern California native who eventually brought him back home with her. During their time on the West Coast, Ryan worked in the brewery and winery industry for several years while brewing his own beer in their Sonoma garage. Nestled among some of the best producers of beer and wine in the world, his passion for brewing and oenology naturally flourished.

Ryan and partner David, along with various family members and friends, worked diligently to upfit NRBC’s home in the Five Points neighborhood of Raleigh. Building the tables and benches, 30′ tasting room bar, bathrooms, and cold storage (to name a few items), their passion for their craft and sharing it with the public is evident in every corner of the building. On Friday, July 31, 2015 all their hard work paid off and the doors to the tasting room were opened.

Ryan Bethea- Owner/Operator Oysters Carolina

Ryan Bethea is the owner and operator of Oysters Carolina, one of the few oyster farms in North Carolina and operates the only shellfish aquaculture lease on Harker’s Island, a fishing town located east of Beaufort and nestled in the core banks sheltered by Cape Lookout.  Growing oysters in this merrior has paid off with Bethea taking home the 2016 North Carolina Seafood Festival’s “Oyster of the Year” award. Born in Durham and currently residing in Wilson, NC Ryan is a graduate of North Carolina Central University with a degree in Geography and along with oyster farming is an eighth grade social studies teacher in Franklin County.

His love of his home state and desire to protect and preserve North Carolina’s natural beauty and resources pushed him towards oyster aquaculture. After completing the Virginia Institute of Marine Science’s Oyster Aquaculture Training Program Ryan purchased an aquaculture lease on Harker’s Island and began growing oysters with a mission to not only grow a delicious oyster in a sustainable way that will strengthen water quality and preserve biodiversity but will also put North Carolina on the proverbial oyster map. He is steadily on the path to grow an oyster that will be sought after from coast to coast and hopes that his efforts will shed light on the true wonders of NC.

Expo Organization

City of Durham Water Management

Clean Jordan Lake

Durham County Extension Master Gardeners

East Coast Greenways Alliance

Ellerbe Creek Watershed Association

Eno River Association

Frog Hollow Outdoors

Great Outdoor Provision Co.

Keep Durham Beautiful

Lake Crabtree Park

NC Coastal Federation

NC Forest Service

NC Sea Grant

Piedmont Picnic Project

Toxic Free NC

Wake Soil and Water Conservation District

Watershed Weaving with Jan French

What SUP? Triangle

This event is offered free of charge thanks to support from:


Duke Logo


And in-kind donations from:


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