Nature-Based Solutions to Climate Threats: Flooding, Biodiversity Loss, and Heat

Nature-Based Solutions to Climate Threats: Flooding, Biodiversity Loss, and Heat

As park professionals, we understand that climate change is not coming – it’s here. Many cities are facing one or more climate threats while also dealing with the consequences of prior infrastructure decisions that worked against nature rather than with it. These include the channelizing of rivers, conversion of heat-mitigating green space to other uses, and destruction of native habitat and introduction of invasive species. We can build various defenses against these climate threats, or we can pursue more effective and efficient responses by working with nature and deploying nature-based solutions to these challenges.

Join us to hear from speakers who are working on innovative projects in partnership with nature and their communities to mitigate flooding in Baton Rouge, biodiversity loss in Houston, and heat in Tucson. In the process, they’re creating stronger and more resilient communities for people, wildlife, and the planet.


Anna Cawrse, ASLA, PLA
Principal | Denver Office Director

Anna is a landscape architect Principal at Sasaki. She has managed and designed some of the most complex park projects and master plans across North America and Europe. From large regional parks along floodways to small pocket parks within the urban fabric of cities, Anna brings expertise on how to transition master planning of the public realm into realized space.

Shellye Arnold, President & CEO Memorial Park Conservancy

Shellye Arnold
President & CEO
Memorial Park Conservancy
Houston, TX

Shellye leads Houston’s Memorial Park Conservancy. At 1,500 acres, Memorial Park is the city’s largest urban park with an important place in the nation’s history. The park offers an urban wilderness and active recreation, and currently has $205 million of transformative projects underway. This work is grounded in ecological restoration and improved function.

Greg Jackson, Deputy Director, Tucson Parks and Recreation, City of Tucson

Greg Jackson
Deputy Director
Tucson Parks and Recreation
City of Tucson

Greg Jackson is the Deputy Director of capital projects for the Tucson Parks and Recreation Department and moved into this position to oversee implementation of proposition 407, a $225M parks and connections bond. He has over 25 years of parks and recreation experience, primarily working in large urban park systems in Florida and North Carolina.

Blue Baldwin, Storm to Shade Program Manager, Tucson Water, City of Tucson

Blue Baldwin
Storm to Shade Program Manager
Tucson Water
City of Tucson

Blue Baldwin manages the Storm to Shade Program at the City of Tucson, which builds and maintains green stormwater infrastructure on public property throughout the city with a focus on equity and investment in historically underserved areas. Prior to that, she coordinated an academically integrated garden and ecology program in Arizona’s second largest school district.


Diana Colangelo
Senior Program Manager
City Parks Alliance

Diana joined City Parks Alliance in 2019 and serves as Senior Program Manager. Diana manages several of CPA’s programs, including workshops, webinars, peer conversations, technical assistance work in cities across the country, and other capacity-building initiatives designed to strengthen cross-sector park partnerships.

Continuing Education Credits Available:

  • General CEUs
  • LA CES
  • AICP


Event Contact
Diana Colangelo
Jun 15, 2023
1-2:30 p.m. EDT


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