SJU and Lower Merion Conservancy Host Fourth Annual Stormwater Management Workshop

Friday, February 28, 2014

by Amanda Sapio '13

PHILADELPHIA (February 28, 2014) — With the vast quantities of rain and snow the Philadelphia area has experienced this winter, knowledge of stormwater management is imperative to control potential downstream flooding, infrastructure damage, habitat destruction and sewer overflows.

To help educate the community about methods and techniques to address these challenges, Saint Joseph’s University and the Lower Merion Conservancy will host the fourth annual workshop, “From Rain Barrels to Facebook: A Workshop on Stormwater Management in the 21st Century,” on Thurs., March 13, in the Campion Student Center on Saint Joseph's campus. The workshop is free and open to the public. Registration must be completed by Weds., March 5.

“Attendees will learn about new fees connected to stormwater discharge in municipalities, techniques on how to manage and control stormwater on residential and commercial properties, the impact stormwater runoff has on the local watershed and the increasing role of social media and other technologies in connecting people with issues and organizations,” says Michael McCann, Ph.D., associate dean of SJU’s College of Arts and Sciences. “We hope it will help individuals engage in the decision-making process at the local and state levels on how stormwater costs are assessed, especially because Philadelphia, Radnor Township and other areas now have new stormwater or revised fee structures.”

The workshop’s focus will be on the use of social media, modern technology and traditional stormwater management methods to develop effective and collaborative strategies ranging from regional institutional partnerships to neighborhood projects.

The day will open with a welcome message from the program’s two organizers, McCann and Patty Thompson, executive director of the Lower Merion Conservancy, and a plenary session by Nathan Boon, program associate, the William Penn Foundation. Sessions include:

  • Stormwater Issues in our Region: Stormwater Management from Policy, Science and Regulatory Viewpoints by Steven Goldsmith, Ph.D., assistant professor of geography and the environment, Villanova University.
  • Planning for Stormwater: MS4’s and the Stormwater Fee by Brian Merritt, LEED AP, CFM, Water Resources Project Manager, AMEC and Jamie Anderson, Eastern Delaware County Storm Water Collaborative.
  • Connecting People to Stormwater: Social Media and its’ Role in Storm Water Management by Julie Slavet, executive director, Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership, Inc.; Barry Lewis, executive director, GreenTreks; and Linda Dottor, AICP, communications manager, Community Design Collaborative.
  • Stormwater in Your Backyard: Landscaping with Stormwater in Mind by Andrea Welker, Ph.D., professor of civil and environmental engineering, Villanova University; Shandor Szalay, vice president, water resources, AKRF; and Margo Taylor, RLA, landscape architect.

A map of the Saint Joseph's campus is available online. The Campion Student Center is building #15 on this map. Free parking will be available in the Hawks’ Landing parking garage (#52 on the map).  There will be a shuttle running from the Hawks’ Landing to the Campion Building from 8-9 a.m. and from 4-5 p.m.

For more information about the workshop, contact Mike McCann (SJU) at or 610.660.1146; Patty Thompson (LMC) at or 610.645.9030.

Media Contact

Patricia Allen, Director of Communications/CAS, 610-660-3240,


As Philadelphia's Jesuit, Catholic University, founded by the Society of Jesus in 1851, Saint Joseph's University provides a rigorous, student-centered education rooted in the liberal arts. SJU ranks as a top university in the Northeast, with a Phi Beta Kappa chapter in the College of Arts and Sciences and AACSB accreditation of the  Erivan K. Haub School of Business. The University is also deeply committed to the Jesuit tradition of scholarship and service, earning a place on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll and the community engagement classification from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. With courses offered on campus and online, SJU prepares its more than 8,000 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students to lead lives of personal excellence, professional success and engaged citizenship.


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