Anna Birkas is the owner of Village Ecosystems and long term employee of Ridge to River. In both companies she takes an integrative approach to hydrology and sustainable development, focusing on the interaction of soil, water, and organisms to create ecosystems that are either developed as service ecosystems to humans or restore natural ecological conditions. Anna has an M.S. in Hydrology from the University of Montana school of Forestry and a B.S. in Ecology from Humboldt State University. She grew up in Mendocino County and has lived much of her life off-grid and using renewable energy and water systems. Anna has worked in the construction since 1996 with experience in traditional and natural building methods. In 2008 she founded Village Ecosystems and became a general Building contractor. With Village Ecosystems Anna focuses on design and construction for Water Recycling, Water Use Efficiency, Wetland Treatment Systems, Low Impact Development (LID), Land Use Planning, Natural Resource Use, Water-Wise Landscaping, and Rainwater Harvesting in Soil and Cisterns. With Ridge to River Anna works on development and implementation of projects including: Stream Restoration, Bluff Stabilization, Bioengineering, Erosion Control, Road and Stream Crossing Repairs, Watershed Management, and Watershed Monitoring and Analysis. As the current head of the MendoFutures Water Commons and co-founder of Sustain Local Mendocino (SustainLocal.com) Anna works on projects for sustainable community development and planning, advancement of Mendocino County’s green industry, and water and energy efficient demonstration and education.