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,


Founded in 1851 in the Jesuit tradition of academic excellence, Saint Joseph’s University is a top-ranked Catholic University that provides a rigorous, student-centered education. With a total enrollment of 8,500 undergraduate and graduate students, SJU offers a wide-array of academic programs designed so that each graduate enters the world with a competitive resume and global perspective. This is achieved through intense academic study led by thought-leading faculty scholars, a comprehensive campus experience and robust study abroad, service-learning, internship and co-op programs. Upon graduation, nearly 100 percent of students are employed, pursuing advanced degrees or volunteering in prestigious service programs. A member of the Atlantic 10 Conference, SJU offers 20 Division I intercollegiate men’s and women’s sports. SJU alumni – over 60,000 strong - provide a powerful network that spans the globe.

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