Becca is currently the Executive Director of Fire Adapted Colorado (FACO), supporting FAC organizations and practitioners across the state to help establish a Fire Adapted Culture in Coloradan.
She started in the role for FACO on the heals of nearly eight years at FireWise of Southwest Colorado which became Wildfire Adapted Partnership in 2018. She was also instrumental in launching the 667,000 acre watershed wildfire protection group within the region called the Dolores Watershed Resilient Forest (DWRF) Collaborative that was initiated in July 2015. She has been working on wildfire resilience, starting with a focus on residents and neighborhood scale action in 2011.
Becca is knowledgeable about many models and best practices in wildfire risk assessments at various levels of detail and scale. She understands the means, motivation, and opportunities necessary to enable individual risk reduction actions. She has led Community Wildfire Protection Planning and more simplistic, short-range, neighborhood scale Community Wildfire Risk Assessments.
Becca has reviewed subdivision plans for wildfire mitigation needs, engaged the region’s limited logging industry in the wildfire risk reduction conversation, explored various opportunities to reduce the cost of thinning on a given acre or increase the value of the material to be removed, and is in training to become a Colorado Certified Burner. Becca has facilitated broad interests to identify opportunities for collective and coordinated actions that will result in greater wildfire resilience in the Upper Dolores Watershed.
As Fire Adapted Colorado Director, Becca is working to build a strong network of members around the state who can turn to each other for resources and support, keep up with best practices together, and collectively lead the way in creating a more fire adapted culture in the state.
Fire Adapted Communities Neighborhood Ambassadors Approach Toolkit
A Fire Adapted Communities (FAC) Neighborhood Ambassador (NA) approach is a mechanism for outreaching to and engaging with neighborhoods to help them understand their wildfire risk and encourage and motivate residents to take action to reduce that risk. The very nature of the approach builds community and promotes taking personal responsibility for where you live – regardless of whether you live within or outside of the wildland-urban interface. Within this approach, offerings can be tailored to the needs and context of a community while still meeting the overarching purpose of engaging residents in fulfilling their role in living with fire.
Fire Adapted Communities Neighborhood Ambassadors can become force multipliers to community wildfire preparedness leaders and experts when the right conditions exist to implement this approach. In order to effectively implement this approach, a coordinator and group of partners committed to building their communities culture of living with wildfire can use this guide to outline your own place based approach to leveraging FAC Neighborhood Ambassadors. This includes: finding the right people; providing these volunteers with initial and ongoing training, communication, and support; connecting them to existing programs and building new programs to meet their demand; celebrating their success; and planning for turnover.
This toolkit is in development to help pracitioners determine whether or not this approach might be useful in your community or region. Some of the best practices for an Ambassador Approach have been provided that have been discovered through many years of practice. An overview of helpful resources and links to templates is also included.
We are still refining this toolkit, but if you are interested in learning more or getting the beta version, feel free to contact me.
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Wood Utilization Community of Practice
One of the greatest challenges of scaling up wildfire resilience efforts is the cost of fuel reduction treatments and the capacity to manage biomass removal. This group seeks share strategies for managing costs, optimizing treatment values, and identifying wood product outlets. Those who are interested may join a FAC NET Podio space where various resources on improving and understanding treatment economics can be shared and found in a resource library. All are encouraged to post questions, stories, and lessons learned on this topic among the FAC Network. Contact me if you'd like to be added to the specific wood utilization networking space.