Supporting Communities Affected by Mining

More than 300 organizations, from racially and economically diverse communities, participate in WMAN- the Western Mining Action Network.  WMAN provides opportunities for locally-based citizen groups in the US and Canada to educate themselves, influence decision making, and cooperate to create positive social change that goes beyond the boundaries of any one location or issue.

WMAN has hired an Indigenous Coordinator!

The Western Mining Action Network (WMAN) has hired  Sayokla Williams as our Indigenous Coordinator to help facilitate network functions and activities for WMAN’s Indigenous Caucus.   You can contact Sayokla with your questions, ideas, and suggestions via email @

Free Citizen Lecture Series

WMAN hosts a series of free informational webinars and conference calls. These webinars and calls give WMAN participants access to expertise and updates on current issues facing mining-impacted communities. See our  Programs  for more information, updates, and announcements.

2018 Lectures and Webinars

WMAN Hot Topic and Skill-Building Webinars and Lectures 2018

Fast tips for your fast pitch | Wednesday, January 10, 2018, 10 a.m. Pacific Time

Do you have an idea for a program or a campaign approach, or a new nonprofit, but you want help figuring out how to effectively “sell” it? You might already know that your pitch might not entail talking about all the facts about your proposal. And throwing a story in there might also not be enough. Join this webinar with Liz Banse to learn tips, tricks and a methodological approach to the “art of the pitch.” You’ll leave with new ways to inspire and persuade your audience to support your concept, whatever it might be!  Led by Resource Media with funding from the True North Foundation.

Communicating on Climate | Wednesday, February 7, 2018, 10 a.m. Pacific Time

Best practices for communicating on climate change:  political, polarizing, but possible!  What’s the secret sauce for mobilizing people around climate solutions? Is our current approach misguided? Is there any way to get people to act on something that may seem far in the distant future for them? How do you frame this problem without overwhelming your audience? Get the answers to these questions, plus the stumper of all time:  why do highly educated people still not believe in climate change?! During this webinar, Liz Banse from Resource Media will talk about climate politics and climate communications, the best practices for people working on mining and other resource extraction issues where climate change factors into current and future impacts and planning.  Led by Resource Media with funding from the True North Foundation.

NEPA Strategies and Approaches: Submitting Alternatives and Preserving Litigation Options | Friday, March 9, 2018, 10 a.m. Mountain Time

This webinar, organized and facilitated by Anne Mariah, will provide an introduction to two different strategies for leveraging NEPA to accomplish campaign goals. First, Mary O’Brien will introduce the strategy of putting together community alternatives and generating broad support for the agency choosing this alternative as its preferred alternative in an EIS. Second, Travis Stills will introduce key points for advocates submitting public comments with an eye toward preserving options to litigate.

About the Presenters:

Mary O’Brien  (Ph.D., Botany) has been serving as Utah Forests Program Director at Grand Canyon Trust since 2003, and with other conservation organizations since 1981,  developing alternatives to be considered in NEPA projects since the early 1980s: e.g., for comprehensive management and forest plans, vegetation treatments, pesticide use, wetlands protection, grazing, and transportation. Prior to Mary’s work as the Utah Forest Program Director for the Grand Canyon Trust, she worked as a consultant on alternatives to risk assessment and toxic-chemical use. Mary has been a staff scientist for the Environmental Research Foundation in Annapolis, Maryland, and for the U.S. Office of Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide. Mary authored the book “Making Better Environmental Decisions – An Alternative to Risk Assessment.”

Travis Stills, Executive Director and Attorney of Energy & Conservation Law, has advised and represented various organizations throughout the country since 1996 and serves as E&CL’s attorney for the uranium and nonconventional law program.  He has taught and developed graduate and undergraduate courses in sociology, environmental law, environmental justice, and environmental policy and politics for Fort Lewis College and the University of Colorado-Denver. He earned his J.D. at Vermont Law School, and has received specialized training in administrative and environmental law while earning his Masters Study in Environmental Law (cum laude) at Vermont Law School. He has litigated numerous reported state and federal cases in which he successfully promoted the interests of the particular campaign/organization and which helped improve the legal protections available through the courts.  A significant portion of his legal work focuses on the National Environmental Policy Act.

Anne Mariah Tapp, J.D., is the principal for Canyon Country Consulting, LLC. where she focuses on using her education in federal Indian law and environmental law to uplift Tribes and protect the Grand Canyon and Colorado Plateau. Anne Mariah’s work is grounded in the belief that the path toward stewardship and restoring balance on the Colorado Plateau lies with the indigenous people who have called it home since time immemorial. Prior to launching Canyon Country Consulting in 2016, Anne Mariah worked at the Grand Canyon Trust for four years, first as a staff attorney and then as the Director of the Energy Program. Anne Mariah has worked with and for non-profits, foundations, and tribal nations in a variety of settings for the past eight years, serves as an advisor to the Colorado Plateau Foundation, and is the acting legal representative for the Western Mining Action Network’s Steering Committee.

To inquire about participation, contact Mary at:

To view this webinar on youtube:

Going head-to-head on messaging | Wednesday, March 14, 2018, 10 a.m. Pacific

Politics has always been a blood sport, but America’s political rhetoric is growing more virulent and higher pitched. Controlling the narrative frame in the middle of a high-speed, high-octane conflict is a constant challenge. Mining activists often face opposition working to drive attention to their chosen messages and facts that make it harder for us to protect our communities. What are some tools and tactics to dealing with opposition messaging? Should you tackle your opponents head-on or not? What are pitfalls to avoid? Liz Banse from Resource Media will discuss the range of tools and techniques for these challenging situations and moments. We will examine the four main ways opponents of conservation attack conservation policies, and brainstorm ways to successfully blunt or bridge from those attacks. We will also examine smear tactics that our opponents use to damage our credibility and how to effectively blunt those attacks. Led by Resource Media with funding from the True North Foundation.

Data visualization | Thursday, April 19, 2018, 10 a.m. PST

Data visualization is about telling the story behind the numbers. Join Liz Banse from Resource Media as we run through 9 best practices when presenting data through visualization formats like charts and graphs. We’ll talk about how to choose the right formats that allow you to easily uncover meaningful patterns, correlations and outliers, and other insights that allow you to discover new things, uncover trends over time, draw conclusions and make informed decisions. We’ll also go over some stumbling points in data visualization for you to look out for when reviewing others, or creating your own data visualizations.  Led by Resource Media with funding from the True North Foundation.

To inquire about participation in our webinars, contact Mary at:

To find tip sheets on communications, from op-ed writing to media relations, please visit Resource Media’s Toolbox page at: