Skip to content Skip to navigation

Sixth Annual Eccles Family Rural West Conference

Collaboration and Compromise in the Rural American West

Yakima, Washington, March 22-23, 2018

Conference Schedule

Thursday, March 22

5:00 – 5:30 pm
Check-in at guest hotels
5:30 – 7:00 pm
Casual Reception and Dinner


Friday, March 23

8:30 – 9:00 am
On-Site Registration
Yakima Convention Center, 10 N 8th Street, Yakima, WA

9:00 am
Welcome and Conference Introduction
  • Bruce Cain, PhD, Spence and Cleone Eccles Family Director, The Bill Lane Center for the American West
  • David M. Kennedy, PhD, Co-Founding Director, The Bill Lane Center for the American West

9:30 – 11:00 am
Panel 1: Challenges and Possibilities in Wildfire Management

As devastating wildfires have become a new reality in the American West, this panel will discuss the challenges and new possibilities of managing both their impact and our response.

11:00 - 11:15 am
Break and Networking

11:15am – 12:45 pm
Panel 2: Toward a Healthier Rural West

Building upon the 2017 Rural West conference, this panel will brainstorm the next steps in improving health care and access in the rural West.

12:45 – 1:30 pm

1:45 – 3:15 pm
Panel 3: Perspectives on the Yakima Basin Integrated Plan

The Yakima Basin Integrated Plan has been praised for making the Yakima Basin a great place for families, fish, and farms. This panel will discuss the background, implementation, and opposition to the YBIP.

3:15 – 3:30 pm

3:30 – 5:00 pm
Panel 4: Models for University-Based Collaborative Governance

This panel will highlight best practices in university-based collaborative governance for addressing environmental, economic and health issues in the rural West.

5:00 – 5:30 pm
5:45 – 7:00 pm
Yakima Convention Center, 10 N 8th Street, Yakima, WA
  • Keynote: Hilary Franz, Washington Commissioner of Public Lands


Saturday, March 24

10:00 am
Optional brunch and ranch visit in Cle Elum, Washington
Details will be announced at the conference.


Back to top


Rural West Conference Volume

Bridging the Distance

Common Issues of the Rural West

Edited by David B. Danbom
Foreword by David M. Kennedy

Published in cooperation with the Bill Lane Center for the American West, Stanford University
The University of Utah Press has published Bridging the Distance, a book by the Rural West Initiative of the Bill Lane Center for the American West. Edited by the distinguished historian David B. Danbom and with a foreword by Center co-founding director David M. Kennedy, the book explores the Rural West across four dimensions: Community, Land, Economics – and defining the Rural West itself. The book is the result of work presented at the first Conference on the Rural West, which took place in Ogden, Utah, in October 2012.