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The William D. Ruckelshaus Center

eNews Spring 2013

The mission of the William D. Ruckelshaus Center is to act as a neutral resource for collaborative problem solving in Washington and the Pacific Northwest. The Center provides expertise to improve the quality and availability of voluntary collaborative approaches for policy development and multi-party dispute resolution. The Center is a joint effort of Washington’s two research universities. For more information, visit our website.

The William D. Ruckelshaus Center’s electronic newsletter (eNews) is published two to four times per year. If you know of someone who might be interested in receiving this eNews, please forward it to them. If you wish to be removed from the list or would like to subscribe, please click here.

Support the Center

Supporting the Center is a tax-deductible investment in the quality of life in our state and region. Donations are matched up to $100,000 per year by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and qualifies for donor credit at both WSU and UW.

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Alan SimpsonSenator Alan Simpson to Speak at Chairman’s Circle Luncheon

Want to find out what is really going on with the economy of the United States? Join us on Friday, August 2 to hear former Senator Alan Simpson (R-WY) — straight-shooter, trusted bipartisan leader and co-chair of the Simpson-Bowles Commission — discussing “Myths and Misunderstandings of America’s Fiscal Situation.” The Chairman’s Circle luncheon is held as a thank-you to the Ruckelshaus Center’s most dedicated supporters. Presenting, Event and Table sponsorships are available, as well as individual tickets if space allows. This engaging and informing event will be held at the Washington Athletic Club in Seattle. Click here for more information.

Chehalis Flood Plane MapChehalis Flood Mitigation Moves Ahead

Governor Inslee’s proposed 2013-15 capital budget included $28.2 million to implement flood mitigation projects recommended by the Chehalis Basin Work Group, which is being facilitated and coordinated by the Ruckelshaus Center. That funding is included in the House and Senate spending bills that will be reconciled when the Legislature reconvenes in mid-May. The Center assisted the Work Group’s efforts to assess technical information, consider alternatives, and produce and submit a report to the Governor. The Chehalis Basin Flood Authority, representing local governments in the Basin, supported the Work Group’s framework to address flooding and fish issues. The recommendations include investigating the feasibility of major capital projects, local flood damage reduction and fish habitat projects, and a comprehensive plan for enhancement of aquatic species in the Basin. More information

Welcome New Board, Committee and Staff Members!

We are pleased to announce several outstanding additions to the Center’s Board, Committees and staff. Long-serving and recently retired WA Congressman Norm Dicks has joined the Center’s Advisory Board, and we are delighted to welcome him. Board members Martha Kongsgaard and Doug Walker have begun serving on the Development Committee, to help us achieve our fundraising goals. Chris Page has joined the Center as Project and Development Lead, and will split his time between developing and managing collaborative policy projects, and working to implement the Center’s fundraising strategy. Welcome and thank you Norm, Martha, Doug and Chris!

Eldercare LogoPreparing for the “Silver Tsunami”

Five years ago, the Institute of Medicine reported that the US is not prepared to meet the health care and social support needs of its growing elder population. To keep up with the increase as the baby boomers age, our nation and region will need to increase its capacity to provide care for seniors. The Center has begun working with the University of Washington’s Health Policy Center to examine eldercare workforce capacity in the State. In the first phase, the project team will map the issues. In later phases, it will convene stakeholders statewide to listen and learn from one-another about areas of conflict and consensus, and facilitate those stakeholders as they create and put into operation a State Eldercare Workforce Alliance. The Center will also participate in an initiative of the University Network for Collaborative Governance to launch similar efforts in other states, including a national colloquium of eldercare experts. More information

Legislative EventPerspectives on the Washington State Legislative Process

In keeping with the Center’s focus area on civil public discourse, theCenter co-sponsored (with the Governor’s office, Secretary of State’s Office and others) a lunch event in Olympia on April 9 entitled “Perspectives on the Washington State Legislative Process.” WSU scholars presented research highlights; former Secretary of State Sam Reed moderated a panel of past and present of legislators (including several Center Advisory Board members) on improving the legislative process, civility and perception of state government. Click here to view the TVW broadcast of this well-attended and well-received event.

Columbia River BasinColumbia River Salmon Assessment

In partnership with Oregon Consensus at Portland State University, the Center is conducting a situation assessment of regional views about salmon and steelhead recovery over the long-term in the Northwest’s largest river basin. A situation assessment is an interview-based process undertaken to better understand and explore relevant issues and interests of involved parties and situation dynamics. An assessment team featuring practitioner and academic expertise from Washington, Oregon and Idaho will reach out to a broad array of regional parties over the next several months, to capture the full range of perspectives. To read an article about the assessment, click here.

Double Your Donation – Six Weeks to Reach the Gates Match

Individual contributions provide the Ruckelshaus Center with the flexibility to address urgent problems, respond to new opportunities, and see important processes through to success, regardless of external funding. If you donate before June 30, your tax-deductible gift or pledge counts double! Help us raise the full $100,000 match under our Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Excellence Grant. Gifts of $1,000 or more qualify you for the Chairman’s Circle (a group of the Center’s most dedicated supporters) and invitation to events like the Chairman’s Circle luncheon described above. The easiest way to donate is online by clicking here, or you can contact the Center at (509) 335-2937 or E-mail. Your gift is eligible for donor credit at WSU and/or UW. Thank you so much for your support of the Center!

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Questions or comments? Please call (509) 335-2937 or (206)428-3021, or E-mail

The William D. Ruckelshaus Center, PO Box 646248, Pullman WA 99164-6248, (509) 335-2937, Contact Us

901 Fifth Avenue, Suite 2900, Seattle, WA 98164, (206) 428-3021
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