Environmental Quality Protection, Beautification

AMERICAN LITTORAL SOCIETY

Caring for the Coast Since 1961

Highlands, NJ   |  www.littoralsociety.org

Mission

To promote the study and conservation of coastal marine life and habitat, to defend the coast from harm, and empower others to do the same.

Ruling year info

1963

Executive Director

Mr. Timothy P. Dillingham

Main address

18 Hartshorne Dr. Suite 1

Highlands, NJ 07732 USA

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EIN

22-1731073

Cause area (NTEE code) info

Water Resource, Wetlands Conservation and Management (C32)

Single Organization Support (B11)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The American Littoral Society promotes the study and conservation of marine life and habitat, protects the coast from harm, and empowers others to do the same. We are living in a time of a changing climate. The changes we are experiencing pose threats to the health of our estuaries, bays and coast. Our coastal communities depend on a clean and healthy ocean and coast for our economic well-being and our safety. Living shorelines, using nature and nature-based approaches such as restored oyster reefs, replanted salt marshes, sand dunes and maritime forests and revegetated shoreline edges hold the answer to the challenges of climate adaptation and controlling coastal erosion. We must care for and protect our coasts as if our lives depend on it – because they do.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Coastal Conservation

Through grass roots advocacy, outreach and education, we promote sustainable land-use and best practices in coastal watersheds to protect and preserve wildlife and habitat. We open the eyes of residents to the natural wonders in their own back yards; act as conduit between landowners, land trusts, and government land preservation programs; and engage individual citizens in eco-friendly practices at the back-yard level through our Shore Stewards program.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Budget
$236,000

In New Jersey, we work at the state and local level to develop policy that promotes sustainable growth and protects coastal wildlife and habitat; we work to align local land-use regulations and practices with state regulations and monitor to ensure enforcement. When all other remedies to secure enforcement have failed, we litigate. We are a leading voice in defending the public’s right to access our waterways, whether rural and suburban beaches or urban waterfronts.

Population(s) Served
General/Unspecified
Budget
$124,000

We educate youth, adults and users of marine resources about the science and issues facing our estuaries, bays, and oceans through field-based learning and hands-on stewardshiwalks and talks in New York, New Jersey, Florida; and eco-tours in coastal areas throughout the U.S. and abroad.

Population(s) Served
General/Unspecified
Budget
$96,000

Our fish tagging program engages 1500 volunteer anglers from Maine to Florida who tag more than 25,000 fish per year. To date we have provided 45 years of data for the National Marine Fisheries Lab at Woods Hole, MA, where it is used by scientists throughout the world. This program promotes sustainable catch-and-release fishing and stewardship of coastal resources; provides data needed to conserve fisheries in the Atlantic Ocean and east coast estuaries; perpetuates the citizen scientist tradition upon which the Society was built; and fosters connections between people and nature.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Budget
$72,000

We collaborate with community volunteers, landowners, government agencies, private businesses, and other non-profit organizations to restore habitats that are important to the coast such as tidal wetlands, oyster reefs, dunes, and migratory fish corridors. Community involvement is a high priority. In this way we not only restore habitat for fish, wildlife and human enjoyment but also inform and engage communities to advocate for restoration of additional sites and protect their environment from future. We are a founding member of Restore America’s Estuaries and work maintain close connections with the national restoration field through their national partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Restoration Center.

Population(s) Served
General/Unspecified
Budget
$227,000

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Charting impact

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

We will continue our work to promote and secure increased coastal habitat protection, restoration, resiliency in response to climate change related impacts and clean water restoration and protection. We plan to continue and build upon our successful model of creating demonstrations of needed policies and practices, protecting special places, engaging diverse communities and identifying and advocating for needed policy changes to accelerate implementation. Oysters will continue to serve as an iconic species for habitat restoration, cleaning up polluted waters and using nature to make our communities safer from climate change impacts. As part of the state’s continued efforts to clean up Barnegat Bay (which we led – in partnership – much of the advocacy for), we will be building new oyster reefs in Barnegat Bay. These reefs will help the Bay by filtering water, reducing turbidity along a high energy shoreline and providing increased protection to an adjacent community park and homes. We will connect these community-based efforts to an ongoing policy discussion about significantly scaling up the scope of oyster restoration efforts, working with the state to identify policy barriers and needed new approaches. Successful demonstrations in Barnegat will not only help that bay but inform efforts in our other focus areas along Delaware Bay and in the Two Rivers region (Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers, Monmouth County), in addition to the state policy discussions. Our deep involvement in the protection and restoration of the Delaware Bayshore will continue and expand. The conservation work will continue to focus on protection and recovery of the endangered red knot and horseshoe crabs through habitat restoration. Additionally, policy efforts aimed at reducing continuing stressors related to crab harvest, aquaculture and coastal management are on our agenda. Our work in the more urban communities of the Delaware River estuary will expand with new emphasis on securing clean water and cleaning up pollution sources which prevent communities from enjoying swimmable and fishable waters – the guarantees of the Clean Water Act. We will continue our successful Green Stormwater Infrastructure program, and launch a new effort to develop in partnership with the Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority a “road map” to identifying and accelerating pollution reduction actions around Camden and Philadelphia. At the state level, we will continue our policy and advocacy work promoting the use of natural and nature-based approaches to hazard mitigation and climate change adaptation, making sure the RGGI tidal marsh and forest stewardship program “rolls out” appropriately, developing the necessary policy and regulatory changes for expansion of tidal marsh restoration activities, and ensuring that the increased public access to tidal waters promised by the Public Trust Act are secured through changes to state policy, regulations and enforcement actions.

We plan to continue and build upon our successful model of creating demonstrations of needed policies and practices, protecting special places, engaging diverse communities and identifying and advocating for needed policy changes to accelerate implementation.

A strong team of environmental experts coupled with non-profit professionals brings the needed expertise to continue to complete demonstration projects, engage and educate the public, and advocate for the coast. Our Executive Director and other staff are often requested to serve on steering committees, collaborate on projects, and provide expertise to national, state, and local agencies. We also have a long history of recognition through funding awards by foundations and government agencies to continue caring for the coast.

We hope and believe that we will see significant additions to our coastal resiliency programs and efforts over the coming year. These will include the launch of new programs and “on the ground” demonstrations of resiliency best practices.

The Society was organized in 1961 when a group of skin divers volunteered their services to the recently established research laboratory of the US Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife at Fort Hancock, NJ, a Sandy Hook marine laboratory. The lab's assistant director John R. Clark, became the Society’s first president. Eventually the scope of the Society’s interests became broader than just observation of shore areas, reaching from study to conservation, education and advocacy. The Society remains a steward of a long stretch of coastline that runs along the northeast. The American Littoral Society continues to believe in the value of citizen scientists, makes them an integral part of our work, and advocates for best environmental practices. In 2017, the Society planted over 23,000 native plants planted, returned 176,000 oysters into our waterways, employed 13 US veterans, tagged 14,500 horseshoe crabs, removed 60,000 lbs, preserved 450 acres of critical wildlife habitat, connected over 14,000 people to the coast through NY state beach clean ups, volunteerism, and educational programs, and tagged 11,364 fish to track migration and growth.

Financials

AMERICAN LITTORAL SOCIETY
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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AMERICAN LITTORAL SOCIETY

Board of directors
as of 4/30/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ms Tally Blumburg

Open Space Institute

Term: 2018 - 2023

Peter Hetzler

Physician, New Jersey

David Chapman

Environmental Economist, US Forest Service, Fort Collins, CO

Angela Cristini

Professor Marine Biology, Ramapo College, Director NJ Meadowlands Environment Center

George Kowallis

Physician, New York City

Cindy Zipf

Executive Director, Clean Ocean Action

Tally Blumberg

Open Space Institute

Greg Quirk

Retired Educator

Doug Douty

Local Businessman

Mark Mauriello

NJDEP Commissioner (retired), NJ

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes

Keywords

Coastal conservation,habitat restoration,marine conservation,coastal advocacy,marine education