Balance is pleased to welcome Kat Ridolfi as our lead Senior Water Quality Specialist. Based in our Berkeley office, she is responsible for managing many of our projects which have important water-quality components, particularly when linked to sediment, lake or groundwater management. Kat links high-level science with a number of regulatory or enhancement measures, ranging from watershed enhancement programs (such as TMDLs), wellhead protection, aquifer optimization (such as SGMA), urban and stormwater protection measures, and lake and pond management programs.

Kat has assessed and developed TMDLs for Mercury and PCBs and successfully developed implementation plans in California for San Francisco Bay and Tomales Bay, and then led the public outreach portion of the multi-decade Alameda Creek Watershed Enhancement Plan, both while working at the regional science center, San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI). Before joining Balance, she worked for 6 years in Washington. DC, for LimnoTech, where she continued to work in the regulatory environment, developing TMDLs, for Lake Michigan, identified green infrastructure projects in the DC-area, directed wet-weather sampling of urban runoff and relating these to tissue-based lab analysis. Kat developed the Watershed Restoration and Action Plan Template for the State of Minnesota used to prioritize implementation planning at a site-specific level within a watershed to protect aquatic habitat and recreation on streams and lakes, followed by a pilot watershed assessment using the template. At both of these assignments, she led the facilitation of large stakeholder outreach programs on a variety of technical topics.

Kat brings an aquatic ecologist’s perspective to Balance’s water-quality, restoration design, and groundwater practices, and her natural affinity for physical hydrology allows us to provide more rigorous hydrologic support to the planners, biologists, engineers, and land managers and community groups who come to Balance, while linking our unique field services into improved detection, analysis, and monitoring. She will deepen Balance’s stormwater practice with her expertise in selecting sites for green infrastructure pilot projects in the urban landscape, restoring hydrologic function to both improve water quality and to manage stormwater volumes, therefore reducing pollutant loads. Her affinities for demonstration or pilot projects over a variety of seasons and watershed conditions will noticeably broaden the range of sediment and sedimentation data we can provide our clients into the realities of planning and developing streams, impoundments, estuaries and aquifers consistent with 21st-century societal goals.

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