About Us

RiverSmart event; Photo Credit: Friends of the Chicago River

Related Files

2011 Annual Report.pdf2.31 MB
Environmental Practices76.5 KB
Compact.pdf73.55 KB

River Network’s mission is to empower and unite people and communities to protect and restore rivers and other waters that sustain the health of our country.

Founded in 1988, we are leading a national watershed protection movement that includes nearly 2,000 state, regional and local grassroots organizations whose primary mission is to protect rivers and watersheds. Our staff is headquartered in Portland, Oregon, with field offices in Colorado, Maryland, North Carolina, Ohio and Utah.

We work most closely with River Network Partners — dues-paying groups that receive ongoing access to our resources, services and technical training. Our consistent support has helped many hundreds of these groups to form and grow steadily stronger over the past two decades. Many now have professional staff and hundreds or thousands of active members of their own.

We envision a future when every person knows their watershed and is an active caretaker of their local, river, lake, stream or bay. We work for a day when all people have access to clean plentiful water.

Making this vision a reality hinges on River Network’s thousands of national, state and local partners working together to meet four goals:

  1. A vibrant grassroots movement of citizens, organizations and decision-makers has the capacity to protect the long-term health of rivers and communities
  2. Clean, flowing rivers support rich habitat both for a diversity of fish, birds and wildlife both in the water and on the land.
  3. Healthy river systems free of pollution provide clean water for everyone to sustain our health, ensure enjoyment of rivers, and stop environmental injustice.
  4. Impacts of climate change are reduced and river health improved by more effective and efficient use of water and energy.

River Network advances its work with an unwavering focus on four core principles. We:
• Lead our network by listening to and empowering our partners
• Advance bottom up and top down connections between grassroots advocates and national leaders
• Work across political jurisdictions to focus on nature’s boundaries and hydrologic cycle
• Use sound science to inform model political, social, economic and environmental decisions that can be replicated for larger impact
• Amplify the political power of local grassroots groups and alliances for collective action.

Our staff is guided by the values embodied in our "Compact" and works hard to minimize its environmental impact (see links at right).