SWPA Water’s New Strategic Coordinator | John Stephen

John Stephen has joined the Southwestern Pennsylvania Water Network as Strategic Coordinator, which is an important milestone in the development of this multi-organization network dedicated to clean water. 
The Southwestern Pennsylvania Water Network welcomes John Stephen as its first Strategic Coordinator. John brings over a decade of experience in environmental non-profits. He most recently held the position of Coordinator for Negley Run Watershed Task Force, has a lifetime of commitment to community-level work, and will work to build a regional identity for the headwaters of the Ohio River Basin. John is a seasoned and strategic leader with experience in advancing the well-being of individuals, families, and communities throughout the region. John begins his new role today, July 24th.
In late 2018, Heinz Endowments asked the Water Center at Penn to work with local stakeholders to explore challenges and opportunities related to the Three Rivers Watershed Regions. These challenges include water quality (which includes legacy pollutants, mine drainage, emerging contaminants, fracking waste management, contaminated groundwater, lead, wastewater challenges, and source water protection), water quantity (which includes combating issues of flooding, combined sewer overflows, basement backups, landslides, and the effects of changing weather), and water affordability and accessibility (which includes access to recreational opportunities).
As John begins his job, he will be working to bring together those who work with and are affected by the region’s water. John recognizes that too many of our water issues are fueled by inequalities.
John Stephen and the Strategic Working Group will be engaging new partners to round out representation across all the sectors that have a role to play in ensuring healthy water throughout the region. He will also focus on determining how the Network can be most effective in advancing policies that will improve the quality and quantity of clean water in Southwestern Pennsylvania.
If you are an individual interested in the region’s water, are a watershed or environmental organization, or if you work with the many aspects of the region’s water from wastewater to recreation, please welcome John Stephen as the Southwestern Pennsylvania Strategic Coordinator. Join the Water Network and bring your challenges and successes so we can work together for clean water. You can find more information about the Southwestern Pennsylvania Water Network at swpawaternetwork.org.