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Patuxent River Conference: Water Quality Issues and Solutions

  • 02/01/2024
  • 9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
  • Patuxent Research Refuge (National Wildlife Visitor Center)


  • For special accomodations only.
    No walk-ins or late registrations.

Registration is closed

Registration closes on Wednesday, January 24.

PAXCON 2024 will feature presentations, posters, panel discussions, and networking on these four pillars

  • Activism/Citizen Participation
  • Science and Research
  • Policy and Legislation
  • Communication, Engagement, and Education

Additional Details will be posted here and on

Location: Patuxent Research Refuge (National Wildlife Visitor Center)
Address: 10901 Scarlet Tanager Loop, Laurel, MD 20708
There is limited parking, we encourage carpooling. Please park in the far right of the Visitor Center parking lot. 

Tentative Agenda

9:00 Doors Open (Registration/Coffee)

9:30 Conference Welcome: Jennifer Greiner, Patuxent Research Refuge Manager

9:40 Keynote Speaker: Mayor Noah Waters, Town of Eagle Harbor Maryland

10:30 - 12:15 Morning Breakout Session IA: Science and Research

  • Jonathan Craig, Department of Environmental Science, American University. 

    Title: Concentration of Microplastics and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in the Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary Region of the Patuxent River, Maryland
  • Michael Gonsior, UMCES-CBL. Title: Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products in Maryland Waters
  •  Jessica McGlinsey, UMCES - CBL. Title: Climate Ecology & Conservation: The State of the Diamondback Terrapin
  • Erik Michelsen, Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works. Title: Can we use tools to model the water quality benefits of beaver to create incentives for landowners and local governments to embrace their return?

10:30-12:15 Morning Breakout Session IB: Activism/Citizen Participation & Communication, Engagement and Education

  • Alison Zak, Human-Beaver Coexistence Fund. Title: How to Coexist with Beavers
  • Becky Swerida, CBNERR MD/DNR and Kaitlin Scowen, MD DNRTitle: SAV Watchers: From the Chesapeake Bay to the Patuxent River
  • Mary Hoover, American Chestnut Land Trust. Title: Citizen-led Water Quality Monitoring in Calvert County
  • Elizabeth Brown, Dr. Stella Liu; College of Education and Human. Development, George Mason University. Title: Good for students, good for scientists: Beneficial outcomes of a water quality citizen science project in a high school classroom

12:15 Lunch / Student posters

1:15 Panel: Patuxent Preservation: Past, Present and Future. Panelists: Dr. Ralph Eshelman, Dr. Walter Boynton, Richard Dolesh, Greg Bowen, Fred Tutman, Gary Hodge

2:15 Break

2:30 Young Professionals Panel: Engaging Younger Diverse Audiences in Patuxent River Research and Restoration

3:30 Conference Ends

Watch the recordings from the 2020 Pax Con

The Patuxent River, considered “Maryland’s River”, is the longest river entirely in the state of Maryland. Home to over 100 species of fish and a staggering variety of resident and migratory birds, the Patuxent River is a jewel of the Maryland natural world. Archaeological artifacts dating back to 7,200 B.C.E. suggests the River has been an essential lifeline for humans for thousands of years.

The Patuxent River Conference (PAXCON) is the premier forum uniting scientists, environmental educators, natural resource managers, and anyone passionate about the health and future of the Patuxent River. To know and understand the Patuxent River is to take one more step towards its protection.

Join us for a lively and intellectually stimulating day and to network with new and old colleagues!

Consider being a Sponsor of the Conference: With a sponsorship of $100 your organization will receive one complimentary conference registration, your logo on the conference website and materials, as well as being able to share materials with conference attendees.

Registration Fee: (includes lunch)  Registration Closes 1/24.
No walk-ins or late registrations will be accepted.

  • Registration fee has been reduced and it's just $35
Student Participants: $10 Contact Karyn Molines for the registration code.

Presenters: $10 Contact Karyn Molines for the registration code.

Student Presenters: Free Contact Karyn Molines for the registration code.

For agencies that require a W-9 for processing payments: Calvert Nature Society is the Payee: Download the W-9 form for your records.

The schedule of events is subject to changed based on the status of the coronavirus response, weather, staffing, and other situations that may arise. If Calvert Nature Society or Calvert County Natural Resources Division cancels a program, a full refund will be issued. 

COVID policies   Cancellation and Refund Policies

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