Senior facilitator and mediator Laura Kaplan has been with CCP since 2002. She has over a decade of in-depth experience designing and conducting collaborative processes including: assessment, group facilitation, multi-party consensus-seeking, strategic planning, negotiation, mediation, training, public outreach, and collaborative public involvement. Her areas of policy interest and experience include water supply and conservation, flood planning and ecological restoration, forest planning, and collaboration with California Tribes. Her specialties in collaboration include working with members of the public who are fundamentally opposed to planning activities and incorporating best available science into public policy. Laura holds an M.S. degree in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University and a B.A. degree in Environmental Relations from Alfred University.
Laura’s past projects at CCP include facilitation of the California Levee Vegetation Research Program’s design and implementation of original research and joint-fact finding; facilitating the Technical Advisory Committee to the Northern Sacramento Valley Integrated Regional Water Management Plan; assessment and facilitation of internal agency work groups and public involvement meetings for National Forest planning for three National Forests in the Sierra mountains; facilitation of high-level agency dialogues for the California Roundtable for Central Valley Flood Management; and work on many more environmental conflicts. She also helped design and facilitate the public outreach meetings for the California Department of Mental Health Suicide Prevention Plan Advisory Committee; and an assessment, training, and manual for public participation practice for the California State Water Boards. Laura has been a guest lecturer for public policy classes at California State University, Sacramento; University of California, Berkeley; University of Denver; and the University of Colorado. Laura’s current projects include facilitating State agency personnel in collaboration with university scientists and private sector technical consultants to incorporate best available science and practical expertiseon the effects of woody vegetation on flood control levees; which contributed toState of California policy for levee operations and maintenance. She is also currently assessing and facilitating federal cross-agency collaboration on the design of Sacramento-area flood control projects to avoid jeopardizing a newly federally listed endangered species, the Green Sturgeon.