I wake each day torn between a desire to save the world and a desire to savour the world. It makes it hard to
plan my day.

:: E. B. White


Chelsea Congdon Brundige
Water Policy Strategist

Since its inception in 2011, Chelsea Congdon Brundige has directed the Smart Water program of Public Counsel of the Rockies. The program brings strategic planning and leadership to projects that improve efficiency, accountability and collaboration in water management in the Roaring Fork watershed of Colorado. Chelsea’s efforts also focus on leveraging local successes for replication in other river basins in the state.

Chelsea’s long-running experience in water resource policy and innovation includes 5 years with the Natural Heritage Institute in Sausalito, California, and 12 years as a senior water resource specialist with the Environmental Defense Fund in California and Colorado. Her work focused primarily on finding cost-effective, equitable and environmentally sound ways to improve the management of western water resources in the Colorado, Sacramento and San Joaquin River basins, the San Francisco Bay/delta, and the Colorado River delta in Mexico.  Chelsea was project director and principal investigator for Environmental Defense Fund’s report “A Delta Once More: Restoring Riparian and Wetland Habitat in the Colorado River Delta” (June 1999). From 2001-2010 Chelsea worked exclusively as a film producer (www.firstlightfilms.tv), returning to work on local water issues in 2011.

Chelsea graduated from Yale University in 1982, magna cum laude, and earned a M.A. from the Energy and Resources Group at the University of California in Berkeley in 1989. Chelsea served as a member of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on the Future of Irrigation from 1994 to 1996. She also served on the Advisory Board for the Rocky Mountain Office of the Environmental Defense Fund, the Board of the Aspen Valley Land Trust, the Advisory Board of the Trust for Public Land, the President of the Board of COMPASS, an organization supporting progressive education in Colorado’s Roaring Fork Valley. Currently she serves on the Board of Western Resources Advocates (https://westernresourceadvocates.org) the Colorado Rocky Mountain School (http://www.crms.org) in Carbondale, Colorado and Space for Giants USA (http://spaceforgiants.org).