Native Fish Society

Wild. Abundant. Local

aka Native Fish Society   |   Oregon City, OR   |  www.nativefishsociety.org

Mission

Guided by the best available science, Native Fish Society advocates for the recovery of wild, native fish and promotes the stewardship of the habitats that sustain us all.

Ruling year info

1996

Principal Officer

Mr. Mark Sherwood

Main address

813 7th St. Ste. 200A

Oregon City, OR 97045 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

93-1187474

NTEE code info

Natural Resource Conservation and Protection (C30)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (S01)

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

Today, the majority of the Pacific Northwest’s iconic native fish hover at just 1-10% of their historic abundance. The fate of native fish will be decided within our lifetimes. The revival of native fish is more than an environmental movement, it’s about preserving our shared cultures. Native Fish Society exists to cultivate a groundswell of public support needed to revive abundant wild, native fish. What is a wild, native fish? And why are they important? A wild, native fish completes its entire lifecycle naturally, without human intervention and is a fish species that occurred naturally within a lake, stream, or river historically—not placed there by humans. Wild, native fish, like Pacific Salmon, are keystone species—meaning they’re uniquely entwined in a natural relationship with people and wildlife. Their wellbeing and success affect us all.

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?

River Steward Program

What many people don’t realize is that by and large, America’s most significant conservation victories start with a small group of concerned locals determined to make a difference.

That’s why Native Fish Society’s River Steward Program exists: to empower, inspire and grow a region-wide network of local grassroots advocates dedicated to science-based solutions for their Northwest homewaters and wild, native fish.

Native Fish Society believes that no effort for wild fish protection and recovery is stronger or more effective than those based on science and initiated and sustained by local communities.

Our 90 River Steward volunteers become the local voices for wild fish, connecting the dots between the best-available science, latest policy decisions and their own place-based knowledge. River Stewards engage in policy making, coalition building, watershed monitoring, community outreach, habitat protection, serve on their local watershed councils and lead entity groups to ensure state and federal funding for habitat restoration is invested in the projects that provide the best result for wild fish.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Native Fish Fellows are a group of exceptional activists, inspiring leaders, talented ambassadors and skilled experts who are taking action to support the revival of abundant native fish throughout the Pacific Northwest.

The Native Fish Society exists to educate, inspire, and empower people so that together, we can create a world where native fish and human communities thrive. As the number of people who are dedicated to the revival of historically abundant wild fish populations grows, people from all walks of life are using their area of expertise, skills, or their own unique talents to protect the fish they love.

In 2018, we started the Native Fish Fellowship Program in order to expand the opportunities for people to take action for native fish. Working alongside staff and River Stewards, NFS Fellows are now an integral part of achieving our environmental mission, vision, and values as well as our equity strategy.

Today, Native Fish Society's work reviving abundant wild fish is empowered by 12 Native Fish Fellows.

The Native Fish Society is honored to support their ongoing efforts.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Mission: Bringing women together to champion our wild places and wild fish.

Vision: Our wild fish and watersheds are healthier because women are leaders in cultural wisdom and science-based education, regenerative practices, and advocacy.

WHY Women for Wild Fish:
At Native Fish Society, our mission is most resonant when we include many voices. Women co-create a movement through Women for Wild Fish that expands their skills as advocates of wild fish and healthy watersheds. As an organization, we believe that we have a responsibility to create opportunities that are welcoming and supportive of people who identify as women, who act on behalf of fish, rivers, and communities.

WHAT is Women for Wild Fish?:
Women for Wild Fish is a movement focused on encouraging and supporting women who are joining together as advocates, activists, and leaders in the recovery of wild, native fish across the Pacific Northwest. We are a growing circle of women who steward the revival of abundant wild fish, free-flowing rivers, and thriving communities!

Population(s) Served
Women and girls
Activists

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

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

We envision a Pacific Northwest abundant in wild fish, free-flowing rivers, and thriving local communities. Fish native to the Pacific Northwest have never been more abundant than when they were produced naturally from healthy rivers. These abundant wild fish provided countless benefits to the ecosystem and people. The past 150 years of river development, especially through dam construction, we have choked off headwater habitats and stopped the natural river processes essential to a healthy environment. As a result, the Native Fish Society advocates for free-flowing rivers, where natural processes create fish habitats, nourish the land and provide fish access to all of their needed habitats. Local communities are essential to realizing this vision. When our rivers are healthy and respectful fisheries are in place, communities can thrive as stewards of these natural resources and can count on them to provide for current and future generations.

We create this momentum by empowering everyday people to take action on behalf of wild fish, our homewaters, and our communities. To accomplish this we support two conservation programs and an initiative that seek to empower volunteers and welcome everyone to join and participate as a member of the Native Fish Society.

River Steward Program: What many people don’t realize is that by and large, America’s most significant conservation victories start with a small group of concerned locals determined to make a difference. That’s why Native Fish Society’s River Steward Program exists: to empower, inspire and grow a region-wide network of local grassroots advocates dedicated to science-based solutions for their Northwest homewaters and wild, native fish. Our River Steward volunteers become the local voices for wild fish, connecting the dots between the best-available science, latest policy decisions, and their own place-based knowledge. River Stewards engage in policymaking, coalition building, watershed monitoring, community outreach, habitat protection, serve on their local watershed councils and lead entity groups to ensure state and federal funding for habitat restoration is invested in the projects that provide the best result for wild fish.

Native Fish Fellowship Program: Native Fish Fellows are a group of exceptional activists, inspiring leaders, talented ambassadors and skilled experts who are taking action to support the revival of abundant native fish throughout the Pacific Northwest. As the number of people who are dedicated to the revival of historically abundant wild fish populations grows, people from all walks of life are using their area of expertise, skills, or their own unique talents to protect the fish they love. In 2018, we started the Native Fish Fellowship Program in order to expand the opportunities for people to take action for native fish. Working alongside staff and River Stewards, NFS Fellows are now an integral part of achieving our environmental mission, vision, and values as well as our equity strategy.

Women for Wild Fish Initiative: Women for Wild Fish is a movement focused on encouraging and supporting women who are joining together as advocates, activists, and leaders in the recovery of wild, native fish across the Pacific Northwest. We are a growing circle of women who steward the revival of abundant wild fish, free-flowing rivers, and thriving communities!

Membership: Today, Native Fish Society supports over 3,000 members and supporters. When challenges or opportunities arise for native fish we leverage the passion and voices of our membership to ensure decision-makers act in ways that bring about healthy rivers, abundant wild, native fish, and local communities.

As an organization, NFS was awarded the American Fisheries Society's Carl R. Sullivan Fishery Conservation Award in 2015 for outstanding contributions to fisheries conservation. Staff backgrounds and experience includes environmental and natural resources policy and management, grassroots organizing, fisheries research, and restoration, nonprofit fundraising and conservation advocacy. Additionally, staff and volunteers have received training at Patagonia's Tools for Grassroots Activists Conference and our staff, board, and volunteers completed DEI training and Equity Strategy Sessions with the Center for Diversity and the Environment. In total, NFS staff have a combined 46 years of experience with the organization.
• Executive Director, Mark Sherwood, joined the NFS staff in 2010 and served the organization in a number of roles before becoming Executive Director in 2016. His diverse background with salmonids includes seasons working as a commercial salmon fisherman in Bristol Bay, AK and a sport fishing guide in Argentine Patagonia.
• Conservation Director, Jennifer Fairbrother, received a Master’s of Public Policy from The George Washington University and has more than a decade of experience in environmental and natural resource policy and grassroots organizing.
• North Oregon Regional Coordinator, Liz Perkin has a Bachelors in Biology from Reed College, a Masters in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences from the University of Washington, and a PhD in River and Riparian Ecology from the Free University of Berlin (Germany).
• Southern Oregon Regional Coordinator, Kirk Blaine, Kirk Blaine, graduated from the University of Montana in
Missoula with a B.S. in Business Administration focused on Marketing and Management. To his advocacy for wild fish and communities, Kirk brings experience managing forest lands and community organizing and engagement through his role as Project Manager with the Blue Zones Project.
• Operations Manager & Women For Wild Fish Coordinator, Tracy Buckner has served the Native Fish Society in a variety of roles since 2012. Her passion for wild rivers and native fish is matched by a love for people and empowering them to speak up for the places they cherish.
• Washington Regional Coordinator, J. Michelle Swope joined Native Fish Society in 2019 as our first full-time staff person supporting our community of River Steward volunteers in Washington. She comes to NFS with extensive training experience and a lifelong passion for the rivers and fish of her home state. She's also the Trout Unlimited Women's Initiative and diversity co-chair.
• Development Director, Tom Derry, spent 10 years working to establish the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area and Eagle Cap Wilderness additions. Tom has served as our Molalla River Steward and full-time Development Director for 18 years.

Native Fish Victories:
• Protected 101,000 acres of Rogue River/Siskiyou National Forest from open-pit strip mining threatening the clean drinking water and native fish populations of the Rogue, Illinois, Smith, Pistol rivers, and Hunter Creek.
• Worked with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to create a science-based spring and fall Chinook conservation plans for the Rogue River.
• Protected wild spawners by ending the unsustainable harvest of wild winter steelhead on the North Umpqua River.
• Protected 22,000 miles of essential salmonid habitats from instream suction dredge mining.
• 1,000,000 fewer hatchery fish released annually in Oregon and Washington rivers and a boost to the Sandy River’s recovering wild salmon and steelhead as a result of our Save Sandy Salmon campaign.
• Unified local stakeholders by forming the Molalla River Alliance, which brings public and private groups, local, state and federal agencies, and landowners together to protect and restore the Molalla River ecosystem.
• Protected wild steelhead in 1,000 sq. miles of Washington watersheds from the negative impacts of hatcheries through our work with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
to establish Wild Steelhead Gene Banks on the Sol Duc, Wind, East Fork Lewis, North Fork Toutle/Green, Grays and Chinook rivers.
• Protected and created habitat for wild, native fish, including threatened coastal coho by facilitating the purchase of over 300 acres of estuarine habitat on the Oregon Coast.
• Protected threatened wild steelhead by working with biologists from the National Marine Fisheries Service to improve low flow closures on the Mendocino and Sonoma Coast.
• Conducted watershed restoration and salmonid recovery educational presentations to more than 500 people annually on Central Oregon Coast watersheds.
• Built local coalitions of support to secure State Scenic Waterway designation for the Molalla & Chetco rivers, protecting 28 river miles from damming, water diversions, and mining.

People Empowered:
Native Fish Society's work is empowered by 3,000 members and supporters, 75 place-based River Steward volunteers, and 12 Native Fish Fellows. Our Women for Wild Fish Initiative activated 275 women in 2018. Through grassroots organizing, we directed 11,000 supporter voices to improve water quality in the lower Deschutes.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

Native Fish 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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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Native Fish Society

Board of directors
as of 02/25/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Mr. Paul Fortino

Perkins Coie


Board co-chair

Mr. Doug DeRoy

Paul Fortino

Kirsten Kinsman

Russell Loeb

Doug DeRoy

Justin Cetas

Kyan Bartel

Jeremy Hull

Michael Dalton

Paula Stenberg

Warner Munro

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.

  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 2/25/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

No data

Transgender Identity

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data