Speaker: Cynthia Koehler
Cynthia Koehler is an environmental attorney and water policy expert with 30 years of experience working on federal and state water and natural resource issues. She has served for the last 16 years as an elected Board Director for Marin Water, a public water provider serving a population of 200,000 people and responsible for managing 21,000 acres of watershed lands. She is an appointed member of the US EPA’s Environmental Financial Advisory Board (EFAB) Council and served previously on US EPA’s Local Government Advisory Committee and Governor Brown’s Urban Advisory Group. Cynthia is also the executive director of WaterNow Alliance, a nonprofit network of local water leaders advancing sustainable, equitable, and climate-resilient water management strategies nationwide, with a particular focus on innovative infrastructure finance and policy. She worked previously as the Legislative Director for California water issues for the Environmental Defense Fund and is the recipient of The Bay Institute’s Hero of the Bay Award, as well as other commendations for her environmental leadership.
During breakout sessions, we will reflect on the following questions:
Are books a way to connect with others for you or more an inward-facing opportunity?
Facilitator: WMD member Chantel Walker - Assistant Director of County Library Services at the Marin County Free Library (MCFL). MCFL operates a network of 10 branches throughout the County, an archive, a Bookmobile, and a mobile preschool literacy vehicle. Its mission is to provide welcoming, equitable, and inclusive opportunities for all to connect, learn and explore. Prior to her role at the MCFL, Chantel led the County of Marin’s Organizational Development and Training Division within the Department of Human Resources. She and her team deliver educational training, tools, and strategies to build organizational capability and employee excellence at the County of Marin. During her more than 20 years of experience in philanthropy and the broader nonprofit sector, Chantel has worked as a technical assistance provider, grantmaker, senior executive, and direct service provider throughout the country on children, family, and neighborhood development issues. She has published and presented on issues of early childhood education and community development, community organizing and the role of philanthropy, human services reform, early childhood education, finance, and facilities development. She is fluent in Spanish, and an experienced convener and facilitator. Chantel continues to be an active and dedicated volunteer.
Book recommendations from members:
Home is a notion that only nations of the homeless fully appreciate
and only the uprooted comprehend.
--- Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose
Won’t it be wonderful when black history and Native American history
and Jewish history and all of U.S. history are taught from one book?
Just U.S. history.
--- Maya Angelou
Speaker: Lynn Murphy
Lynn Murphy is the Mental Health Liaison for San Rafael Police Department. She is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and has been with the department for 8 years. Her job is to engage with individuals who are experiencing homelessness and/or mental illness to connect them with whatever services they need. Lynn works closely with Marin County Health and Human Services, the District Attorney’s Office and Public Defender’s office, The Ritter Center, St. Vincent de Paul Society, Homeward Bound of Marin, and Marin Housing Authority to house those that are the most vulnerable. Since working at the department, Lynn has collaborated with the Marin Alliance to Solve Homelessness (MASH) to house 426 people! Lynn also has a K9 partner named Blue who does outreach on the street. Blue is a retired Guide Dog from Guide Dogs for the Blind and plays an instrumental role in helping employee wellness at the San Rafael Police Department, and in responding to mental health calls. Say hello to them when you see Lynn and Blue on the street!
Read more about what San Rafael is doing to support San Rafael’s unhoused community at
“May Light always surround you;
Hope kindle and rebound you.
May your Hurts turn to Healing;
Your Heart embrace Feeling.
May Wounds become Wisdom;
Every Kindness a Prism.
May Laughter infect you;
Your Passion resurrect you.
May Goodness inspire
your Deepest Desires.
Through all that you Reach For,
May your arms Never Tire.”
― D. Simone