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Resident receives advocacy achievement award


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Linda Gass

Los Altos resident Linda Gass received an advocacy achievement award as a watershed steward at the Silicon Valley Watershed Summit, held Sept. 22 at Foothill College.

Organizers of the summit honored Gass, an artist, as Watershed Advocate of the Year for curating “Shaped by Water: Past, Present and Future,” an exhibition that ran through last April at the Los Altos History Museum.

“I learned a lot about water during the construction of the exhibit,” Gass said.

“Shaped by Water” chronicled the history of water in Silicon Valley, with an emphasis on local issues. Gass developed the exhibition, investing time and energy and sharing her knowledge of water in the region.

“It’s really about how our human activities have changed over the years. … We used 100 percent local water and are now dependent on 50 percent import water,” she said. “Historically, we took a bucket and fetched our water, now we get water from the tap through plumbing. Early Spanish missionaries understood the need to filter their water before they used it and also as they returned it to the stream.”

“Shaped by Water” is currently on display at the Los Gatos History Museum and is scheduled to open at History San Jose next spring. The exhibition, designed to travel to other locations, will serve as the source and background for other sites to include their local water applications.

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