Mission Statement

The mission of the Washington Salmon Coalition is to support and strengthen the 25 lead entities in Washington State in their endeavor to restore, enhance, and protect salmonids and their habitats in a scientifically-sound manner that engages local communities and supports our economy.

Washington Salmon Coalition History

This group was constituted to advise the Department of Fish and Wildlife on salmon recovery policy issues. Originally called the Lead Entity Advisory Group (LEAG), the the Coalition evolved mainly to support the Lead Entity Program by serving as a forum for discussing issues and improving communication with the Salmon Recovery Funding Board, RCO, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Governor’s Salmon Recovery Office, other state agencies, the Council of Salmon Recovery Regions, and other interested groups. Education and coordination are a central focus. In December 2013, the group changed its name to the Washington Salmon Coalition. The roles of lead entities and of the Coalition should evolve with the needs of salmon recovery and the changing landscape of Washington State’s economy.


The Coalition seeks to effectively communicate as a unified voice representing the interests of lead entities and their communities statewide with our partners, provide a communication forum for discussing emerging lead entity issues, and develop strategies for addressing these topics.

The Coalition seeks to foster relationships and share best practices amongst colleagues and provide educational opportunities for the 25 lead entities in Washington State.

The Coalition communicates as a collective voice that salmon recovery the “Washington Way” is yielding statewide results.

Internal Goals

  • Develop strategies to improve long-term stability of lead entities, the Washington Salmon Coalition, and salmon recovery funding.
  • Periodically review and reaffirm the Washington Salmon Coalition’s identity and strategies.
  • Encourage lead entity consensus on priority recommendations and communicate in a unified manner.
  • Facilitate the interchange of information, relationship building, and mentoring amongst lead entities.
  • Support professional development and training opportunities.
  • Use the Salmon Recovery Portal as an effective reporting and communication tool.

External Goals

  • Actively advise the Salmon Recovery Funding Board on local salmon recovery and lead entity issues.
  • Promote the Lead Entity Program as the local, scientifically-based program for developing salmon habitat projects that fit within local community values.
  • Increase lead entity efficacy and profile by engaging at regional, state, and national levels.



Mike Lithgow, chair
Kalispel Tribe Natural Resources Department
Desk: 509-447-7435
Cell: 509-370-8794