Lee First is co-founder and Waterkeeper of Twin Harbors Waterkeeper. Please describe your relationship to…
Penny is a Project Manager for the consulting firm Enviro Issues, passionate fly angler, and all around conservationist.
I’ve loved water all my life. We swam and boated in crystal clear lakes in NH when I was a kid. I slept on rocks in the middle of the Swift River as a high schooler listening to the chatter and gurgling of the river as it wended it’s way through granite boulder fields.
For all that, it wasn’t until I took up fly fishing in my 30s that I really began to understand the value of water to me personally. And then my career took me in the direction of landscape-scale conservation and the impacts of climate change. Water, its availability and quality, overshadowed every aspect of the conversation. Whether talking about cold, clear water for fish, ephemeral springs and riparian habitat for birds and other animals, or balancing habitat conservation and restoration with flood protection along our urbanized rivers, water has loomed large in my life for the past couple of decades.
I escape to the water to fish, to connect with nature and to let water’s power and grace comfort me in times of grief. I need water in my life—to feed my soul and to bring me both solace and joy.
Water needs our protection. It demands our attention and requires we take every possible action we can to preserve and conserve this life-giving and restorative resource. For after all, without it, we are all adrift.
3. Penny Mabie Shares Her Water Story