Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion at River Network
All people have a right to abundant clean water that sustains life. To achieve this right for all communities, it is imperative to build a more diverse, equitable and inclusive movement for clean water. River Network is committed to being a catalyst and partner in this transformation.
Here, we humbly share our approach to equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) within our organization, recognizing that this is one path – there is no “right way” to embark upon this journey or to approach this work. We share our story in the hope that it inspires and encourages others across the network to begin, renew, and accelerate efforts to build a more diverse and inclusive movement for our nation’s waters.
Want to start or continue equity, diversity, and inclusion work at your organization? Jump to our team’s recommended resources below or email Director of Leadership Development, Brenna Goggin, to learn more about how River Network can be a partner in this work.
This page details our efforts around organizational EDI and ensuring EDI is incorporated into all aspects of our work. For more on specific programmatic work that intersects with EDI, follow our blog and explore our current focus areas.
Our Principles for Equitable & Inclusive Work
We commit to holding ourselves accountable to the standards below, and to sharing, discussing, revising, and amending these standards over time with our water protection and river restoration community.
- We use equity as a lens through which we view our work and as a guiding principle for choosing the right action.
- We set a table for all.
- We practice what we preach.
- We value human and ecological needs.
- We partner with others who know more than us.
- We build and maintain relationships that outlast funding.
- We deploy our resources strategically.
- We commit to learn and grow.
- We are transparent about our capabilities and our progress.
- We hold ourselves accountable and welcome others to hold us accountable.
The full text of our Principles for Equitable and Inclusive Work can be found here.
Case Statement: Why Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Are the Foundation of Our Mission
Adopted by River Network’s Board of Directors in 2017.
“Water is sacred and necessary for all life. … River Network’s commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion is not apart from our mission, but the path forward to achieving it. Addressing water disparities provides us with a moral and strategic opportunity to build a stronger river movement, aligning people of varied ages, races, economic conditions, and other identities…”
Our Commitments in Action
Here’s how our internal staff EDI committee was established, and currently structures and operates. We are always learning, adapting, and staying open to our evolving needs. This committee builds on the work of River Network staff and board members who came before us, in all iterations of Board Committees.
Recent Initiatives & Projects
Here’s what our internal staff EDI committee has been working on recently, in collaboration with our entire staff.
For more background, explore this exploration of River Network’s organizational history, through our commitment to EDI.
River Network Resources
On Our Blog
- Online Accessibility as a Component of Water Equity, Carly Schmidt
- Rethinking Staff Holidays – Another Step in our Journey Toward Inclusion, Staff EDI Committee
- An Update from River Network’s Staff Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee, Staff EDI Committee
- Working to Be the Change We Seek: Our Ongoing EDI Journey, Nicole Silk, Amy Boal, Sheyda Esnaashari
Public Statements Related to EDI
Other Articles, Blogs & Resources
- River Network’s Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Racial Justice Resources for Nonprofits
- The Role of Coalitions in Propelling Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice Work Forward, Mariah Davis (Choose Clean Water) and Ellen Underwood (Coalition for the Delaware River Watershed)