Curtis Knight, Executive Director, California Trout
California Trout (CalTrout) is the conservation nonprofit member of the Two-Basin Solution Partnership Steering Committee. Representing CalTrout on the steering committee is Executive Director Curtis Knight. Mr. Knight leads the $10MM organization working to ensure resilient wild fish thrive in healthy water for future generations. Knight has worked for California Trout since 2000 heading up the Mt. Shasta Office before becoming Conservation Director in 2010. In 2014, Curtis was named Executive Director where he currently leads CalTrout’s work to solve complex resources issues while balancing the needs of wild fish and people. With six regional offices across the state, CalTrout partners with landowners, NGOs, agencies, and other stakeholders to execute science-based restoration projects and legislation with multiple benefits for wildlife, people, the economy, and the ecosystem.
Grant Davis, General Manager, Sonoma Water
The Sonoma County Water Agency (Sonoma Water) is a member of the Two-Basin Solution Partnership Steering Committee. Representing Sonoma Water on the steering committee is General Manager Grant Davis. Mr. Davis is responsible for Sonoma Water’s core functions of providing drinking water to over 600,000 residents in portions of Sonoma and Marin counties, wastewater management for 60,000 customers, maintaining nearly 100 miles of streams and detention basins for flood protection, and restoring habitat for three federally listed fish species in the Russian River. Mr. Davis and his team are also implementing a renewable energy portfolio that has resulted in a carbon free water supply and distribution system. Sonoma Water is a regional leader in the development and implementation of federal and statewide initiatives, such as the North Coast and San Francisco Bay Area Integrated Regional Water Management Program, Water Bond Coalition, and the Pacific Coastal Salmon Restoration Fund.
Janet K.F. Pauli, PhD. Chair, Mendocino County Inland Water and Power Commission
The Mendocino County Inland Water and Power Commission (MCIWPC), a member of the Two-Basin Partnership Steering Committee, is a Joint Powers Authority whose five member agencies include the County of Mendocino, City of Ukiah, Potter Valley Irrigation District, Redwood Valley County Water District and the Mendocino County Russian River Flood Control and Water Conservation Improvement District. The Commissioners who serve on MCIWPC are publically elected representatives appointed by their respective Boards. MCIWPC was formed in the 1990’s to protect the water supply from the Potter Valley Project (Project). All of the member agencies are dependent upon the Project as it provides the water supply supporting the local agricultural economy and the domestic water for the communities in the Upper Russian River watershed in Mendocino County. MCIWPC is also the Non Federal Local Sponsor with the USACOE in a Feasibility Study to raise Coyote Valley Dam. Dr. Pauli was appointed to the Commission by the Potter Valley Irrigation District Board of Directors and has chaired MCIWPC since its inception. Chair Pauli was involved in the Relicensing Amendment Proceedings and the ESA Section 7 listing for the Potter Valley Project, was a member of the Potter Valley Project Drought Working Group, is a member of Mendocino County Farm Bureau Water Committee and represents Mendocino County on both the Eel River Forum and the Public Policy Facilitating Committee for the Russian River Biological Opinion.
Steering Committee Members
James Russ, Tribal Council President, Round Valley Indian Tribes
The Round Valley Indian Tribes (Round Valley) are a Sovereign Nation of confederated tribes in Northern Mendocino County. There are seven Tribes which consist of Yuki, Concow, Little Lake, Pomo, Nomlaki, Wailaki and Pit River. Round Valley is a partner of the Two-Basin Solution Steering Committee. Representing Round Valley is Tribal Council President, James Russ. Mr. Russ is also the Executive Director of the Round Valley Indian Health Center. As Tribal Council President, Mr. Russ is charged with carrying out the directives of the Tribal Council, such as governing and authorizing actions for the care, welfare and protection of the Round Valley Tribal members, their lands and the waters of the Reservation. The Round Valley Tribes rely upon the water and fish of the Eel River to sustain their people and culture, and have done so since “time immemorial.” In addition to the deep-rooted cultural ties and devotion to the environmental health of the Eel River, the Round Valley Tribes have federally recognized water rights that were reserved to them when the Reservation was established in the mid-1800s. Round Valley has undertaken a concerted effort to form collaborative relationships with the other members of the Two-Basin Partnership in order to address the legitimate interests in both the Eel and Russian River basins. The Round Valley Indian Tribal Council has a responsibility to all Tribal members to protect the best interest of the Tribes and the future generations. In 2009, the Tribal Council passed a resolution calling for a free-flowing Eel River to restore it to its natural state. That Tribal Resolution still stands today to support the best interest of the Eel River Basin.
Hank Seemann, Deputy Director/Environmental Services, Public Works, Humboldt County
Representing Humboldt County on the steering committee is Hank Seemann, deputy-director for environmental services with the Humboldt County Department of Public Works. Mr. Seemann manages a portfolio of programs and projects involving water resource management, aquatic restoration, sea level rise adaptation, outdoor recreation, and environmental stewardship.
The main stem of the Eel River flows through Humboldt County for approximately 81 miles before discharging into the Pacific Ocean. Tribal lands of the Wiyot Tribe and Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria are located near the mouth of the Eel River and these tribes have been deeply connected to the Eel River since time immemorial. The City of Fortuna, City of Ferndale, City of Rio Dell, and other small communities are situated along the lower Eel River and residents within Humboldt County depend on the Eel River for water supply, fishing, recreation, and many other uses.