Working lands, ecosystems, towns, and cities all need scarce water resources to survive in an uncertain future. With a plethora of legal battles and competing interests between powerful players, water access, quantity, and quality is a hot topic in Kansas. In discussion with Representatives Lindsay Vaughn and Kenny Titus, we explore the state of water quantity and quality and the conversations happening within the state. Karen Willey will lead this semester’s four-part Discussion Group Series.
This program is presented in partnership with the KU Honors Program.
This series is presented in partnership with the Kansas Rural Center.
Representative Kenny Titus was born and raised in Great Bend, Kansas, and attended Kansas State University where he received BS degrees in Journalism and History and a MA in History, along with a JD from the University of Kansas School of Law. Kenny has worked as a public service attorney for the Kansas Department of Transportation, Kansas Attorney General, and Kansas Department of Agriculture, where he dealt extensively with the state’s water law issues, and he taught water law as an adjunct professor for the University of Kansas School of Law. He currently resides near Manhattan and represents the 51st District in the Kansas House, which includes Pottawatomie, Wabaunsee, and Riley Counties and serves on the House Water Committee.
Lindsay Vaughn is a Kansas State Representative serving District 22 in Overland Park, where she was born and raised. Lindsay is the Ranking member of the House Water Committee and is focused on developing policy and working with stakeholders across Kansas to build nonpartisan coalitions aimed at sustainable water use. As the youngest woman in the Kansas Legislature, Rep. Vaughn is also dedicated to elevating the voices of young Kansans and advocating for future generations. To her legislative work, she brings diverse experiences in nonprofit and volunteer management as well as grassroots community organizing. Lindsay is active in her local community and serves on the board of Heartland Conservation Alliance, a land trust dedicated to stewarding the Blue River watershed.
Karen Willey serves as the Douglas County, Kansas Commissioner for District 3. Dr. Willey holds a BA in Environmental Studies and a PhD in Geography, both from KU. She works as a nonprofit consultant through Futureful, a local company providing organizational health and fundraising support to health, housing, and human services organizations in urban Kansas City. She leverages this social impact work along with her science and entrepreneurship experience in crafting grounded local policy
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