Caesars Foundation establishes fellowship for watershed research with Desert Research Institute

Funding to focus on graduate studies and research on sustainable practices in the Lake Tahoe basin

For Immediate Release: December 3, 2012

(RENO) - The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is proud to announce a unique collaboration with the Caesars Foundation that will create a three-year funding mechanism and extensive research opportunity focused on the sustainability of the Lake Tahoe basin.

The new Caesars Foundation Fellowship in Watersheds and Environmental Sustainability has been awarded to Ms. Angela Stevens, a graduate research assistant at DRI and a student in the University of Nevada, Reno's Hydrology Program. The award will provide $48,750 in funding, matched by DRI's Division of Hydrologic Sciences. 

"This is a shining example of the business community stepping up to develop private-public partnerships for sustaining the environment and, ultimately, the economy of the Lake Tahoe Basin," said Dr. Alan Heyvaert, Interim Senior Director of the Desert Research Institute's Center for Watersheds and Environmental Sustainability (CWES), a leading voice in Lake Tahoe research for the last 20 years. "We sincerely appreciate this gift and look forward to developing a strong relationship with the Caesars Foundation, its affiliated properties and employees in our region to sustain our common interests."

"Environmental stewardship is key to making each of our communities healthier places to live," said Janet Beronio, Chair of Caesars Foundation. "We are proud to support Angela, the Desert Research Institute and the University of Nevada, Reno in their important research efforts to safeguard the Lake Tahoe basin."

Steven's research will focus on Lake Tahoe's nearshore environment under the auspices of DRI's Division of Hydrologic Sciences (DHS) and CWES, potentially focusing on projects such as shoreline erosion estimates, urban discharge monitoring, storm water management and nearshore clarity surveys.

"I feel extremely fortunate to have been chosen for this," said Stevens, who received her undergraduate degree in Forestry from the University of Hawaii and decided to focus on water resource management after spending time in the Philippines where she saw first-hand the impact of community water issues.

"I want to be an advocate and a scientist," she adds. "Water is a big problem and I want to be part of the solution."

The mission of CWES, Heyvaert added, is to develop innovative research programs that address a variety of science issues important to policy decisions at the watershed scale. Through innovative programs supported by organizations like the Caesars Foundation young scientists such as Stevens can better understand the hydrologic, geologic, and atmospheric processes of pristine environments like Lake Tahoe as they relate to water quality, nutrient dynamics, ecology, resource sustainability, and environmental policy.

The Caesars Foundation's objectives include promoting a safer and cleaner environment; helping older individuals live longer, healthier, more fulfilling lives; and strengthen the social, economic, educational and cultural life of each community in which Caesars Entertainment operates.

Stevens is a student in the Graduate Program of Hydrologic Sciences (GPHS), which is a true collaboration between the University of Nevada, Reno and the Desert Research Institute (DRI). The GPHS is one of the largest such programs in North America and is consistently ranked among the top 10 in the United States by U.S. News and World Report. The Hydrologic Sciences Graduate Program offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in both Hydrology and Hydrogeology.

For an in-depth feature on Angela Steven's work at Lake Tahoe - [CLICK HERE

About the Desert Research Institute: DRI, the nonprofit research campus of the Nevada System of Higher Education, strives to be the world leader in environmental sciences through the application of knowledge and technologies to improve people's lives throughout Nevada and the world. 

About Caesars Foundation: Caesars Foundation is a private foundation funded by a percentage of operating income from Caesars Entertainment's resorts. The Foundation is the entity through which Caesars Entertainment funds programs and projects of $10,000 or more, as well as not-for-profit giving requirements imposed by certain operating jurisdictions. The Foundation's objective is to strengthen organizations and programs in the communities where our employees and their families live and work. For more information, please visit .

About University of Nevada, Reno: Nevada's land-grant university founded in 1874, the University of Nevada, Reno has an enrollment of 18,000 students and is ranked in the top tier of the nation's best universities. Part of the Nevada System of Higher Education, the University has the system's largest research program and is home to the state's medical school. With outreach and education programs in all Nevada counties and with one of the nation's largest study-abroad consortiums, the University extends across the state and around the world. For more information, visit


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