We have begun a series of stakeholder activities designed to help rural, small, and medium sized Illinois communities to identify and pursue integrated solutions and projects related to water, energy, and climate change resilience. Our focus is on supporting regional social, economic, and environmental goals in communities that do not have access to the network of resources available to those in/near large metropolitan areas. We are currently conducting community outreach activities to identify community climate resilience needs and priorities (community plan reviews, interviews, survey), and beginning to identify candidate projects that are policy, education, research, and turn-key related projects that could meet communities’ needs (e.g., potentially around storm water management; drinking water quantity and quality; water for agriculture; energy efficiency, cost, and renewable transition, subject to identified community needs). These activities will lead to a face-to-face “Community Project Lab” held at the University of Illinois at Springfield (November 30-Dec 1 window pending COVID-19 restrictions) at which community advocates, funding agencies, researchers, NGOs, media, public and private sectors, and other decision makers will be welcomed together to select and initiate community and research projects tailored to the overlapping needs of small and medium sized communities. Projects would then be tracked.