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Resilience Webinar Series – Partnership Projects, Outcomes, and Impacts on Local Resilience: Keokuk, Iowa and University of Iowa

Featured Speakers: Jerry Anthony, Travis Kraus, Shelley Oltmans, and Nadia Voigt Da Mata (February 24th, 2022 at 12:00pm-1:30pm ct)

In early 2021, EPIC-N announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Office of Research and Development (ORD), and the Educational Partnerships for Innovation in Communities Network (EPIC-N). Part of the agreement involves a deep-dive webinar series that shines a light on examples of local resilience projects fulfilled by EPIC-N Programs. The “Resilience Webinar Series – Partnership Projects, Outcomes and Impacts on Local Resilience” series has already begun and will run until the end of the year. 

The third webinar of the series will feature the University of Iowa’s EPIC program, the Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities (IISC). This webinar features Dr. Jerry Anthony, Faculty of the University of Iowa; Travis Kraus, Director of IISC, University of Iowa; Shelley Oltmans, Executive Director, Keokuk Area Chamber of Commerce; and Nadia Voigt Da Mata, former student participant of IISC, University of Iowa. They will discuss two of the many projects completed during the 2019-2020 academic year as a part of the IISC partnership. Presenters will be asked to share their own perspectives and the outcomes in relation to local resilience in the City of Keokuk, Iowa.

Listen to Nadia Voigt Da Mata describe her involvement in the project while it was underway. During the upcoming webinar she will share about what came of her participation following the completion of the project.

Webinars in this series will follow this format: 

  • EPIC-N and US EPA ORD staff will provide a short introduction to the webinar series and introduce the speakers 
  • EPIC-N staff will moderate the webinar asking speakers about their involvement in the selected projects 
  • Speakers may share prepared slides, websites, resources, when able 
  • Following the moderate presentation, those attending the live webinar will be able to engage the panelists in a question-and-answer session 

The webinars are free and open to the public. 

Suggested hashtags for social media: 

#EPICN #LocalGov #University #Resilience #Iowa #OutreachIowa @KeokukChamber #keokuk

After the webinar concludes, the moderated presentation will be shared on the EPIC-N YouTube Channel. The full version of the webinar including the Q&A’s and the links to any resources shared will be published in the EPIC-N Member Commons for EPIC-N members to use as they desire.


More about the Featured Speakers

Dr. Jerry Anthony is an architect and urban planner. He is an accomplished scholar. His article, “The effect of Florida’s Growth Management Act on Housing Affordability,” was named one of most outstanding articles published in the Journal of the American Planning Association in 20 years. He was named a HUD Urban Scholar in 2001. Dr. Anthony is an outstanding teacher. He has received the “Excellence in Planning Education” award from the Iowa chapter of the American Planning Association—one of only two educators in Iowa to be ever given this award. In 2003, Dr. Anthony co-founded a non-profit entity, Housing Trust Fund of Johnson County, to provide a new source of funding for affordable housing development in Johnson County, Iowa. In 2019, Dr. Anthony was awarded the University of Iowa’s prestigious Michael J. Brody award for Excellence in Service. In 2020, Dr. Anthony was named a Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners.

Travis Kraus is an Associate Professor in the University of Iowa School of Planning & Public Affairs and is the Director for the Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities, a community engagement program that helps create more sustainable futures while enhancing teaching and learning at the University of Iowa. Travis works to enhance the capacity of rural and urban communities in Iowa to address the environmental, equity, economic, and cultural issues they face today.

Prior to joining the University of Iowa in 2016, Travis led the Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development organizations in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, worked as a regional planner for the Southeast Iowa Regional Planning Commission, and was a successful small business entrepreneur for many years. Travis earned a masters degree of Urban & Regional Planning from the University of Iowa, where he also earned a bachelor’s degree in English and a secondary teaching certificate.

Travis is involved in the Iowa City arts scene as both an artist and a board member for the local arts nonprofit Public Space One.

Shelley Oltmans is an Industry Specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach in the department of Community and Economic Development. In this position she also serves as the Executive Director of the Keokuk Area Chamber of Commerce. She is a proud alumna of Iowa State University, where she received a Master in Community and Regional Planning and Master of Science in Sustainable Agriculture. In her Industry Specialist position, she teaches community leadership and facilitates local and regional planning efforts with nonprofits and local governments. Her strengths are partnering with government entities and nonprofits to collaborate in providing educational and economic development opportunities. As the director of the Chamber of Commerce she is highly involved in catalyzing reinvestment in housing and the built environment.

Nadia Voigt Da Mata is an Architect and an Urban Planner currently in Angola. She is a Fulbright Alumni who in 2020 graduated with a master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning in the School of Planning and Public Affairs at the University of Iowa. During graduate school, Nadia concentrated her course studies in transportation planning, which led her to be involved with Keokuk’s city and the “Keokuk Pathways and Green Streets Plan”. Nadia is currently invested in pursuing a doctoral degree, for which she secured a Merit Scholarship from the Angolan Government in September 2021. She hopes to continue learning and conducting research in sustainable transportation planning, and in the future work with communities such as Keokuk.


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