Kent Johnson

“Threats to WI trout streams include climate change, urban and agricultural runoff, and groundwater withdrawal.”
Kinnickinnic River
Hudson, WI

How do you work to protect Wisconsin’s waters?
I’ve been volunteering for many years with Trout Unlimited (Kiap-TU-Wish Chapter) and the Kinnickinnic River and West Wisconsin Land Trusts, to protect and restore trout streams in Western Wisconsin.

What are your biggest concerns right now?
My biggest concerns for Wisconsin trout streams are climate change, the impacts of runoff from urban and agricultural areas, and groundwater withdrawal. Trout are a key sentinel species for healthy coldwater ecosystems that are among the most fragile in the state. Protection and restoration are critical for ensuring the future of Wisconsin’s coldwater streams.

What keeps you strong and inspired in the face of challenges?
The belief that individuals and partnerships can—and do—make a difference for environmental protection and improvement. Several keys to success are a science-based approach to natural resource management, public education and support, and persistence.

Margaret Mead said it best, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” Aldo Leopold and Sigurd Olson have also been inspirations for me.

What’s your favorite “water spot” in Wisconsin?
The Kinnickinnic River in River Falls, WI and Pine Creek, near Maiden Rock, WI.

More information:
Kiap-TU-Wish chapter of Trout Unlimited

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