Russian Riverkeeper has been successfully protecting the River since 1993. Russian Riverkeeper, originally Friends of the Russian River, actively pursues conservation and protection of the River’s mainstem, tributaries and watershed through public education, citizen action, scientific research and expert advocacy. Among our early successes include a landmark conference in 1994, “The Russian River in Peril”, attended by 300 people including experts on fisheries, drinking water, and hydrology in addition to representatives from regulatory agencies and elected officials. Out of the conference came the agreement that the Russian River basin needed a comprehensive master plan that would provide a shared vision of restoration and enhancement of the River and its watershed.
In 2001, Russian Riverkeeper was launched, aligning itself with Waterkeeper Alliance, an international grassroots advocacy coalition of nearly 200 Waterkeeper organizations. Riverkeeper adopted the Alliance’s framework of advocacy and enforcement to steward the Russian River. The latter included the hiring of a full time “Riverkeeper” and acquisition of a boat to closely monitor the River.