Hana Burwinkle

Hana with the ever-present smile on her face
Hana with her ever-present smile

Hana's cat, on the prowl - he's being considered for the official MeOWW mascot!
Hana’s cat, on the prowl – she’s being considered for the official MeOWW mascot!

1. Where do you call home?

Currently they call it The Ham (Birmingham)!  We have been known as: The Magic City, The Pittsburgh of the South, and The Steel City.

Hana, with Bill Peters, conducting an AWW Water Chemistry workshop at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens
Hana, with Bill Peters, conducting an AWW Water Chemistry workshop at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens

2. What stream, river, lake, bay, bayou is your favorite water-spot?

I actually have many favorites – and all for various reasons.  I grew up splashing in the tributaries of Shades Creek –skipping rocks and catching tadpoles.   I caught my largest striped bass while camping at Wind Creek on Lake Martin – she weighed almost 5 pounds … the boys were so jealous!

Hana's photogenic feet, at one of her favorite waterbodies
Hana’s photogenic feet, at one of her favorite waterbodies

3. What water recreation/sports do you enjoy most?

Does playing in the bathtub with my rubber duck count as a recreation sport?

4. What got you interested in Alabama Water Watch?

I was looking for water quality data for local waterways in Jefferson County… well, that and I heard they fry a delicious catfish!  Seriously, come to our AWW Annual Picnic!  [Ed Note: June 13th this year!  Put it on your calendar!!!]

5. What are your biggest challenges/issues in your favorite watershed?

People!  No matter their age, income or level of education – people just don’t understand their impact on their environment … good or bad.

Hana with two close friends
Hana with two close friends

6. Do you have some ‘lessons learned’ that you could pass on to the rest of us relative to watershed stewardship?

My handful of lessons learned:

  • Increase public awareness related to the DIRECT LINKS between their activities and storm water pollution.
  • Give the public CLEAR guidance.  Offer various obtainable actions, this way they don’t feel it is an ‘all or nothing’.
  • Transcend literacy, language and cultural barriers and use photographic interpretations when possible.
  • Make your message personal – think about ‘kitchen table conversations’ and ‘living room learning experiences’.
  • Align with those having community connections – and those that are respected and looked up to in that community.
Hanna showing off her antennae
Hana showing off her antennae

Hanna joined the AWW family in 1998 and  became an AWW Trainer in March, 2000. She has conducted  39 Water Chemistry Monitoring Workshops, training 412 citizen volunteers, and conducted 14 Recertification Workshops – YOU GO, HANA, YOU’RE AWESOME!!

One Reply to “Hana Burwinkle”

  1. Hana was my trainer at the gardens some time ago, she was great, and I enjoyed very much the things I learned from her. I have monitored with Marty Schulman several times, but my failing health has kept me from monitoring with him for about five months. He keeps me up to date with his sampling. Thanks to all.

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