Salmon Recovery Done Locally

In every community, all across Washington, people are joining together to help protect and recover salmon. School children, civic leaders, tribal members, farmers, businesses, lawmakers, landowners, local governments, nonprofits, and neighbors are working together to reverse the problems that have brought many wild salmon runs to the brink of extinction. Serving at the hub are lead entities, which are watershed-based groups that develop strategies to restore salmon habitat and then recruit organizations to do the work.

These groups perform an essential role in salmon recovery in Washington State. Established in law, they consist of:

  • A lead entity coordinator (usually a county, conservation district, or tribe)
  • A committee of local, technical experts
  • A committee of local citizens
  • A grant administrator (usually county, conservation district, tribe, or regional organization)

Making Smart Investments

  • Lead entities develop strategies that guide where state and federal money will be spent.
  • Lead entities coordinate projects that spur local and rural economic development by creating and maintaining family-wage jobs. Restoration funds invested by Washington State are leveraged 3 to 1.
  • Lead entities spearhead efforts to recover and sustain salmon populations necessary for viable recreational and commercial fisheries throughout Washington State.

Only Top Projects Receive Funding

  • Lead entities prioritize projects to maximize the public’s investment. They use habitat strategies and priorities in their recovery plans to guide project lists. This approach ensures that projects will be done in a sequence that produces habitat capable of sustaining healthy populations of salmon.
  • Lead entities combine local science and social values to identify salmon recovery projects.
  • The complementary roles of the local technical and citizens committees ensure that science and community priorities intersect and that the highest priorities of the watershed rise to the top.
  • Lead entities are the nexus for science-based, citizen supported salmon habitat recovery efforts, providing a coordinated, efficient, and effective response to the Endangered Species Act.

Involving the Community

  • Lead entities are the backbone for locally-based recovery efforts, bringing together tribes, federal and state agencies, local governments, citizens, nonprofits, business, and technical experts to make local decisions.
  • Lead entities involve a wide range of participants as project applicants, committee members, technical experts, and on-the-ground volunteers. Involving these diverse groups’ helps lead entities better understand the needs of fish and how to best protect and restore habitat.

Lead entities are funded by the Washington State Legislature and the federal government through the Salmon Recovery Funding Board. Contracts distributing funding are administered by RCO. Lead entities also receive funding from other organizations.

Contact Your Lead Entity Coordinator

Learn More About Lead Entities

Click the links below to visit your lead entity’s Web site.

Chehalis Basin Lead EntityHood Canal Coordinating CouncilIsland CountyKalispel Tribe-Pend Oreille Lead EntityKlickitat County
Lower Columbia Fish Recovery BoardNisqually River Salmon Recovery Lead EntityNorth Olympic Peninsula Lead Entity for SalmonNorth Pacific Coast Lead EntityPierce County
Quinault Indian NationSan Juan Salmon Recovery Lead Entity Skagit Watershed CouncilSnake River Salmon Recovery BoardSnohomish Basin Lead Entity
Stillaguamish River Salmon Recovery Co-Lead EntityUpper Columbia Salmon Recovery BoardWest Sound Partners for Ecosystem RecoveryWillapa Bay Lead EntityWRIA 1 Watershed Management Board
WRIA 13 Salmon Habitat Recovery CommitteeWRIA 14 Salmon Habitat Recovery CommitteeLake Washington/Cedar/ Sammamish Watershed (WRIA 8) Lead EntityGreen, Duwamish, and Central Puget Sound Watershed (WRIA 9) Lead EntityYakima Basin Fish and Wildlife Recovery Board