Master Watershed Steward Program

Logo for Illinois-Indiana Master Water Stewardship program

The Illinois-Indiana Master Watershed Steward Program engages participants as stewards of natural ecosystems and resources through science-based education and volunteer service in their communities. We train volunteers to promote healthy watersheds by increasing their understanding of potential causes of water resource degradation and providing the knowledge and tools they need to identify, prevent, or resolve water quality problems.

The curriculum focuses on topics such as water quality science and the impacts of climate change, invasive species, and agriculture on water bodies. The Illinois-Indiana Master Watershed Steward Program Toolkit provides all materials necessary to guide hosts and future Master Watershed Stewards through eight interactive sessions. Upon completion of the training, Master Watershed Stewards engage in restoration science, community science, and community education programs with local partners. 

The program is offered state-wide in Illinois and Indiana as a collaboration between Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant, University of Illinois, Purdue University, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and other partners.

Project Team

Leslie Dorworth, Aquatic Ecology Specialist,
Kara Salazar, Assistant Program Leader for Community Development with Purdue Extension and Sustainable Communities Extension Specialist,
Eliana Brown, Stormwater Specialist,

Contact Info

Topic Specialist

Sarah Zack
Pollution Prevention Specialist

Research Projects

Carolyn Foley
Research Coordinator


Ethan Chitty
Administrative Assistant

Education & Training

Terri Hallesy
Education Coordinator
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