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THE CIENEGA OUTLOOK                  February 25, 2014 
In This Issue of the CWP Newsletter
Wall of Honor
About Us
Board and Advisory Members
2014 Honored Winners
Wall of Honor Awarded to
 (l to r) Karen Simms, Liz Webb, Julia Fonseca with Martie
Maierhauser, CWP Chairman


On February 8, 2014 three individuals were honored as inductees in the CWP Wall of Honor. Julia Fonseca, Elizabeth "Liz" Webb and Karen Simms were announced and presented with a  plaque by Chairman Martie Maierhauser.


The CWP developed the virtual Wall of Honor on to honor those who have contributed significantly over time in advancing the mission of the CWP, its public forums (the Sonoita Valley Planning Partnership (SVPP) and the Cienega Corridor Conservation Council (CCCC)), or the areas of the watershed served by these organizations.  The service must be extraordinary both in time and diversity and it must be significant and long-term to the watershed.  


These three were nominated by their colleagues and friends and were selected during the Fall 2013 by the CWP Board of Directors.  Their contributions are significant and impacting to the watershed, its resources, and organizations that support it and the local traditions that persist. Below are excerpts of the nominations for each individual.  Go to to read more about members of the Wall of Honor.

Julia Fonseca

has played key roles in Pima County since the mid-1980s.  She was the first manager for the Cienega Creek Natural Preserve involved with removing livestock, obtaining in-stream flow water rights, directing monitoring, undertaking the designation process for Cienega Creek to be an ADEQ Unique Water of Arizona, and in 1994 developing the first  management plan for the Preserve. Julia played a key role in the development of the Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan (SDCP) in several roles ranging from technical support for Special Elements, identifying open space for protection, directing mapping and descriptions of  groundwater-dependent riparian communities, and highlighting the importance of the Cienega Creek basin in the SDCP.

Julia is the Senior Planning Manager for the Pima County Office of Sustainability and Conservation, which oversees implementation of the Conservation Lands System and development of the county's Multispecies Habitat Conservation Plan. She coordinated the county's response to the Rosemont mine proposal, which is one of the biggest threats ever to the natural resources of the Cienega basin.     


In addition to her more publicized record of conservation activities in the valley, Julia's friendly nature and quiet persistence on behalf of the resource are source of inspiration to her colleagues and all those who share her conservation ethic and purpose.


Karen Simms

is the Assistant Field Manager for the Bureau of Land Management Tucson Field office.   For over 25 years, Karen has contributed to the watershed and to the management strategies to sustain it and enable us to contribute.  She helped to found the CWP, the SVPP and the CCCC. In her position as ecological planner, Karen spent several years to produce the Land Use Plan for Las Cienegas, now in its 10th year.


In her 2012 oral history recorded for CWP [], Karen's story-- from bride living on the Las Cienegas to founder of the collaborative movement for the Las Cienegas National Conservation Area-- illustrates how dear the grasslands are to her and how her involvement and impacts ensure that it is sustained.


Her impact as a scientist, collaborator, resident, manager and advocate of the watershed has made a difference.  Besides being a joy to work with, Karen has been a bridge builder across jurisdictions and personalities encourage some outspoken individuals at opposite poles to become colleagues with common aspirations.   She works with individuals and with teams and in all kinds of settings using education, common understanding, and a commitment to civility to encourage us all to aspire to achieving the greater common good.


Elizabeth "Liz" Webb 

has consistently contributed to the greater Vail community that incorporate the values of the CWP, SVPP and CCCC. She has gotten in the trenches to advocate for the greater Vail area in matters concerning our natural and cultural resources. From tracking and monitoring wildlife, leading efforts to ensure that power lines don't endanger sensitive natural or cultural resource areas as well as the viewscape, co-founding the Vail Preservation Society to facilitate the Vail community coming together to preserve its history and heritage, reading long reports, conducting research and drilling down to the basics, tenaciously protecting and finding real reasons to use as leverage in the ongoing Rosemont Mine matter. She has without reservation invested her time, expertise, personal funds, and sheer will to these matters that affect the quality of life of everyone living in the Cienega Watershed.


Elizabeth has devoted herself to advocating for the things that matter without any thought or intent of personal gain. Her nominators described her as loyal, tenacious, honest and altruistic.   Her personal efforts  to the region have promoted the missions and values of many. Her work has contributed to the Empire-Fagan Coalition, Save the Scenic Santa Rita's, Vail Preservation Society, CWP, Arizona Fish and Wildlife, Empire Ranch, BLM, Vail School District, and more.


Congratulations to these special women who have contributed so much and thank you for sustaining the watershed which is so important and critical to us.  



Thanks to Dennis Caldwell who designed this beautiful Wall of Honor plaque

Wall of Honor Plaque  



About Us: 

 CWP works with all stakeholders, including landowners, ranchers, recreational users, and government agencies who can impact the sustainability of the ecosystems including the human communities.


We put our core values into actions:  ecosystem approach, diverse stakeholder involvement, collaborative partnerships, adaptive management practices, sustainable use, science-based actions, and active stewardship. 


To ensure the future of the creek, CWP has a Youth Engaged Stewardship program (YES!) to get high-schoolers out on the land. Additional projects include frog conservation, erosion restoration, water monitoring coordination, collaborative science and land management meetings, climate change scenario planning, and preserving heritage through oral history recordings and timeline documentation.





Martie Maierhauser, Chairman

Kelly Mott Lacroix , Vice-Chair

David Scalero, Secretary

Shela McFarlin, Treasurer

Mead Mier, Chair Development/Finance Committee

Larry Fisher

Trevor Hare 

Thomas Meixner



Arlan Colton
Mac Donaldson
Julia Fonseca
Travis Huxman
Laura Lopez-Hoffman
Lynsey Miller
Dan Robinette
Jennifer Ruyle
Bill Savary
Karen Simms
Steven Strom
Beth Sullivan
Ian Tomlinson
Jeff Williamson

Youth/Outreach Coordinator:
Annamarie Schaecher














Were recently recognized by the Department of the Interior with the Partners in Conservation Award for these projects:


The FROG Project

Oral History Project

YES! Youth Engaged Stewardship

Climate Change Scenario Planning  


CWP's Partners for these projects honored by the DOI include:  


Partners in Conservation Award:

Arizona Game & Fish Department
Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch- of The National Audubon Society

Bureau Bureau of Land Management - Tucson Field Office
Clyne Ranch
Colossal Cave Mountain Park
Coronado National Forest
Empire Ranch Foundation
High Haven Ranch
Kalso Family
National Fish & Wildlife Foundation
Saguaro National Park
Phoenix Zoo
Pima Association of Governments
Pima County Regional Flood Control District
Pima County Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation
Pima County Office of Sustainability and Conservation
Prescott College & Ironwood Tree Experience
Slattum Family
Sky Island Alliance
The Amerind Foundation
The Nature Conservancy 
UA Institute of the Environment
UA Office of Arid Land Studies
UA School of Natural Resources & Environment
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Vail School District, Empire High School & Cienega High School
Vera Earl Ranch Inc.
Vail Preservation Society
Walker Ranch 

...and much appreciation to all the other CWP Partners as well!  


This issue written by: 
Shela McFarlin
CWP Board Member

Cienega Watershed Partnership

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