Water Hero: Lee Stedman

“I was a Water Protector living at the Oceti Oyate Camp during the Standing Rock Protests…”
Menominee River, Lake Michigan
Waukesha, WI

How do you work to protect Wisconsin’s waters?
I was a Water Protector living at the Oceti Oyate Camp during the Standing Rock Protests. I’m now working with organizers from all over Wisconsin on a number of issues including the Back 40 Mine and sulfide mining, Foxconn, high-capacity wells, and more. Much of my time is spent working towards building a statewide coalition under the Gaia Coalition Network.

What are your biggest concerns right now?
The majority of my concerns and organizing efforts right now are divided between the proposed Back 40 Mine along the Menominee River and the Foxconn project slated for Mt Pleasant, Wisconsin. Both pose a major risk of pollution to Lake Michigan and the potential for a continued trend of softened, or even waived, environmental regulations.

What keeps you strong and inspired in the face of challenges?
Knowing that I’m not alone. That there are so many voices uniting from across the divide, under one banner: unions, landowners, politicians, Native American Tribes, students, environmentalists and civil rights leaders… All for the sake of protecting our rivers, streams and Great Lakes.

What’s your favorite “water spot” in Wisconsin?
Parfrey’s Glen State Natural Area in Baraboo, WI or Henrietta Lake in Wales, WI.

More information:
Gaia Coalition Network

Learn about other Water Heroes in Wisconsin:
River Alliance Water Heroes – 2018