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Beyond the Basics 2024

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Beyond the Basics 2024
Stormwater Management


Thursday, February 22nd, 2024
8:30am – 12:00pm


In an age of climate change, urbanization, increasingly frequent and intense storms, and prolonged drought, how can we plan and design stormwater best management practices for the future? In partnership with DuPage County Stormwater Management, The Conservation Foundation is hosting our free virtual Beyond the Basics: Stormwater Management Conference to elevate the standard of professional stormwater practice in DuPage County and the surrounding region. Knowledgeable speakers will address the latest advancements in infrastructure design innovation, policy development, flood resilience, and adaptive management of natural areas. Attendees will learn about new ideas and approaches, and get motivated to take their work in the stormwater management arena to the next level.
3 PDH credits available.


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Welcome Remarks

Brook McDonald, President at The Conservation Foundation
Jim Zay, Chairman, Stormwater Management Committee at DuPage County


Low Salt Design: Why are we designing for the 4th of July instead of the 4th of January?

Connie Fortin, Low Salt Strategist at Bolton & Menk

Connie Fortin is an expert in chloride awareness and chloride reduction strategies. Recently she has joined Bolton & Menk, a civil engineering firm to understand the chloride problem and to better integrate winter into their design considerations.

Winter Maintenance Professionals often report that their salt reduction initiatives are hampered by the fact that much of the infrastructure they maintain has not been designed for the challenges of winter weather. Making the shift to Low Salt Design means creating a built environment which is conducive to winter management, preventing the problem instead of having to fix it after it occurs. In this short talk, we will give you a glimpse of our Low Salt Design initiative and introduce a few of our 10 concepts that can improve infrastructures winter performance.


Coal Tar Sealant – To ban or not to ban?

David Romero, Civil Engineer and Kristine Hocking, Senior Civil Engineer at City of Warrenville

David Romero, P.E. is a Civil Engineer with the City of Warrenville. His five years of experience working in the Community Development Department has comprised of a mix of PUD reviews, building permit reviews, inspections, and as a staff liaison for the Environmental Advisory Commission. Prior to his time as a municipal engineer, David worked on the private consulting side as a construction engineer and land surveyor. He graduated from the Illinois Institute of Technology with a B.S. in Civil Engineering.

Kristine Hocking, P.E., CFM is a Senior Civil Engineer for the City of Warrenville, where she coordinates the engineering and stormwater review of private developments and public infrastructure projects and serves at the stormwater administrator for the City. She has over 20 years of experience in the private and public sector which included a variety of projects including site development, stormwater and floodplain modeling, water and wastewater design, stream restoration, and construction inspection. Kristine earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering from Northwestern University.

For municipal staff, often the path to providing a more sustainable, safer environment for their residents isn’t straight forward. It’s usually a complex journey that involves sifting through a myriad of “greener” options and weighing their benefits against available budgets, staff work-loads, resident’s desires and needs, economic effects, and practicality. But what if rolling out a new ordinance to protect your City’s environment was simpler? Join Warrenville staff as they share their experience implementing a coal tar ban ordinance and pavement sealant license for private contractors.


Resources for Equitable Flood Resilience

Kate Evasic, Senior Planner and Alexis McAdams, Analyst at Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning and Lee Hauser, Project Engineer at Geosyntec

Kate Evasic is a Senior Planner at the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning. In her role, she works to integrate resilience and equity into decisions about transportation and land use to help communities mitigate flooding, improve water quality, and become more resilient in the face of climate change. Kate plays a key role in CMAP’s climate resilience and mitigation work.

Alexis McAdams is a Research Analyst with CMAP where she is leading the development of a Heat Vulnerability Index and is a recent addition to CMAP’s Flood Susceptibility Index team. She is particularly interested in geospatial data analysis, digital mapmaking, and connecting local communities to the data and policies that impact their lives.

Lee Hauser is a Water Resources Engineer with over eight years of experience providing stormwater management analysis and flood risk assessments across the Midwest and extensive experience working to address urban flooding in the Chicagoland area. He integrates detailed H&H modeling with stormwater planning, flood relief, and engineering design projects to help municipal agencies and site owners combat increased flooding with more intense rainfall events. Additionally, he is adept at using stormwater modeling tools (SWMM, HEC-HMS, and HEC-RAS), GIS, and AutoCAD to provide conceptual figures and engineering plan sets for urban gray and green infrastructure stormwater solutions.

Climate change in northeastern Illinois is causing more frequent and intense storms that lead to devastating flooding. Unfortunately, communities with a history of disinvestment often face greater impacts, greater risks, and longer recovery. This presentation features data and guidance with the goal of strengthening the flood resilience of northeastern Illinois.


Champaign’s 20-year Stormwater Journey: Copper Slough Watershed Master Plan to Garden Hills and Beyond

Chris Gutkowski, PE, CFM; Project Manager at Clark Dietz, Inc.

Chris Gutkowski, P.E., CFM, is a Water Resource Engineer and Project Manager at Clark Dietz, Inc. in Oak-brook Terrace, IL. Mr. Gutkowski has 18 years of experience in watershed master planning, local stormwater management studies, floodplain/floodway remapping projects, stormwater detention facility design, surface and subsurface stormwater conveyance design, levee and streambank restoration projects, DOT bridge and local drainage design, site plan review and hydrologic/hydraulic modeling. He served on the ASCE Central Illinois Section board in various capacities for 8 years, including two terms as president. Mr. Gutkowski has also led the Engineers in the Classroom Program and ASCE local branch in the Champaign-Urbana area. Chris holds a Bachelors of Science Degree in Environmental Engineering and Masters of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

The City of Champaign’s Stormwater Management Program has evolved over time. Beginning as a more reactive program, it is now responsible for several award-winning projects that focus not only on the stormwater issues, but incorporates economic, social, and environmental benefits to the community.


Adaptive Planting and Management: Gray Willows Wetland Mitigation Bank

Tom Slowinski, PWS, Technical Director, Wetlands & Ecology at V3 Companies

Tom Slowinski is V3 Companies Technical Director, Wetlands & Ecology. Tom is a Certified Professional Wetland Scientist, with 45 years of wetland, ecological restoration and environmental impact assessment experience. He provides technical wetland and ecological restoration guidance and oversight to a multi-disciplinary staff of botanists, soil scientists, biologists, ecologists, and engineers.

As a result of the thorough pre-seeding site preparation and adaptive planting and management, establishment of desirable, high quality native plants rapidly occurred. Within two growing seasons most of the five-year performance standards were achieved and natural area quality wetland plant communities were established.


Thanks to our sponsor:

DuPage County Stormwater Management logo

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