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Wildfire Resilience Week

Empowering Communities to Take Preventative Action

wildfire resilience week


Wildfire Resilience Week
Empowering Communities to Take Preventative Action

The 2nd annual ‘Wildfire Resilience Week’ returns to the Eastern Sierra May 30 through June 8!

In partnership with Mono and Inyo counties, Whitebark Institute will be hosting a week-long series of events  across the Eastern Sierra to help cultivate wildfire resilient communities using effective wildfire risk reduction strategies.

Our goal is to equip residents with realistic and actionable steps to protect themselves and their homes from  wildfires, while at the same time, fostering collective action within the community and region. Through this  process, Eastern Sierra residents and guests can gain a deeper understanding of how our built and natural  environments can thrive alongside wildfire. It is our responsibility to practice good stewardship of local  landscapes, prevent accidental ignitions, and prepare our homes from the threat of wildfire.

The events during Wildfire Resilience Week offer a diverse range of opportunities for engagement and  education, both in person and online. From informative discussions to hands-on demonstrations, there is  something for everyone interested in learning the most effective and pragmatic ways to safeguard local communities against the threat of wildfires.

Residents, visitors, community members, and local leadership are encouraged to participate in as many  events as possible to gain a comprehensive understanding of wildfire resilience strategies and to connect  with fellow residents and experts in the field. For more details, visit


Whitebark Institute is a nonprofit organization focused on improving the health of Eastern Sierra forests,  surrounding landscapes and communities to ensure they can adapt and flourish in response to future wildfires  and other impacts of our changing climate. Our expertise includes project development, partner coordination  & collaboration, environmental planning, project implementation, community outreach, education, workforce  development, and capacity planning. This breadth of work allows us to approach the wide range of  opportunities and challenges for projects at both a local and landscape scale and to catalyze communities,  partners, and local and federal agencies to get work done now in order to create a resilient future for Eastern  Sierra communities and the landscapes that surround them.


wildfire resilience week

May 30, 8:30-9:30 am: Fire Resilience & Eastern Sierra Climate and Communities Resilience Project Updates
Location: Mammoth Lakes Chamber of Commerce, Community Coffee online presentation
Join Whitebark Institute for an update on the latest developments about fire resilience efforts in our region.

May 30, 6:30-7:30 pm: Science on Tap Speaker Series with Marc Meyer, PhD
Location: Mountain Rambler Brewery, Bishop
Marc Meyer, Inyo National Forest’s Southern Sierra Province Ecologist, will lead an engaging discussion  about the facts and fiction of landscape treatments.

May 31, 5:30-7:30 pm: North Inyo County Firewise USA
Location: Mustang Mesa
Participate in community resource mapping with the Bureau of Land Management and a wildfire response demonstration with CalFire. Connect with new neighbors as Beth Burnam, the Eastern Sierra Regional  Firewise Coordinator, explains how Firewise practices can make your community more resilient to wildfires.

June 4, 5:30-7:30 pm: South Inyo County Community Wildfire Preparedness
Location: Lone Pine
UCCE Advisor Yana Valachovic will explain wildfire preparedness strategies tailored to the unique challenges  of South Inyo County and gain hands-on wildfire mitigation techniques at a demonstration home.

June 4, 6:30-8:30 pm: Embers & Ales Wildfire Trivia Night
Location: Mammoth Brewing Company Brewer’s Hall
Grab your crew, have a brew and learn something new! Test your knowledge about wildfire resilience while  enjoying a refreshing beverage and having an opportunity to win great prizes.

June 5, 5:30-7:30 pm: Wildfire Mitigation Demonstration Home
Location: Long Valley Fire Department
Join Beth Burnam, the Eastern Sierra Regional Firewise Coordinator, and get hands-on experience with  wildfire mitigation techniques at a demonstration home in Crowley.

June 6, 5:30-7:30 pm: North Mono County Firewise USA
Location: Bridgeport Fire Department
Discover how Firewise practices can protect your community in North Mono County with the Eastern Sierra  Regional Firewise Coordinator, Beth Burnam.

June 7, 12-1 pm: The Future of Wildfire Insurance
Online Lunch & Learn webinar and In-person at Mammoth Lakes Library
UCCE Advisor Yana Valachovic will lead a discussion to help residents gain insights into the evolving  landscape of wildfire insurance and how it impacts homeowners.
Passcode: 8Q5dZn

June 8, 10am-1pm: Forest Health & Firewise E-Bike Tour
Location: Mammoth Lakes Library
Learn more about ecological forest health and Firewise practices on an e-bike tour to fuel reduction  treatment sites and a demonstration home.


“The national Firewise USA® recognition program provides a collaborative framework to help neighbors in a  geographic area get organized, find direction, and take action to increase the ignition resistance of their  homes and community and to reduce wildfire risks at the local level. Any community that meets a set of  voluntary criteria on an annual basis and retains an “In Good Standing Status” may identify itself as being a  Firewise® Site … The Firewise USA® program is administered by NFPA® and is co-sponsored by the USDA  Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters.” 


Yana Valachovic is the County Director / Forest Advisor for the University of California Cooperative Extension  in Humboldt and Del Norte Counties. She is a registered professional forester and forest scientist whose skills  and interests cover a broad set of natural resource fields. She is currently the co-lead of the Northern California  region of the California Fire Science Consortium and is a founding steering committee member of the Northern  California Prescribed Fire Council. She is best known for her work in wildfire mitigation and resilience,  however, her research has also covered the ecology of conifer and oak ecosystems, management of forest  pathogens, the effects of forest management on redwood lumber durability, the water demands of forest  densification, impacts of code changes on wildfire building performance, and the sociological aspects of  cannabis production.

Beth Burnam is CalFire’s Regional Firewise Coordinator for Mono and Inyo counties in the Eastern Sierra and is  considered a pioneer in organizing communities to be wildfire prepared. On a volunteer basis, she has founded,  managed, and consulted with many wildfire nonprofit organizations, community groups, businesses, and  residents. Additionally, she serves on the Board of Directors of the Resource Conservation District of the Santa  Monica Mountains, TreePeople, and TreePeople Land Trust. Beth was a founding member and co-President of  the North Topanga Canyon Fire Safe Council where she wrote and managed grants. She also lead Topanga  residents through the process of becoming an extraordinarily large Firewise Community. She looks forward to  using her experience to mentor communities in the Easter Sierra through the process of becoming wildfire  prepared and obtaining their Firewise designation.


These workshops are hosted by the Whitebark Institute in partnership with Inyo and Mono County. Funding  for this project was provided in part by a grant from Edison International as well as the California Department  of Forestry and Fire Protection as part of the California Climate Investments Program, through the California  Fire Safe Council. Special recognition is given to the workshops’ contributors representing UC Cooperative  Extension, Firewise USA, CalFire, Inyo National Forest, Lone Pine Paiute Shoshone Tribe, Bishop Paiute Tribe,  Bureau of Land Management, Mustang Mesa CSD, Swall Meadows Firewise, Wheeler Crest Fire Safe Council  (FSC), Mammoth Lakes Chamber of Commerce, Mountain Rambler Brewery, Mammoth Lakes Brewing  Company, Long Valley Fire Department, Bridgeport Fire Department, High Sierra Energy Foundation, and Mono  County Libraries.

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