The Governor’s Office, with support from RCO, the Governor’s Salmon Recovery Office, and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, is leading an effort to update the Statewide Strategy to Recover Salmon: Extinction is not an Option. The strategy lays out Washington State’s approach to bringing this iconic fish back from the brink of extinction. It includes an assessment of the status of salmon, how the recovery partners should organization, action areas, and measures of progress.

The update will honor the achievements and investments made during the past 20 years while acknowledging new improvements, approaches, and perspectives.


Twenty years ago, Governor Gary Locke adopted the Statewide Strategy to Recover Salmon: Extinction is not an Option and Governor Christine Gregoire added to it in 2006. This strategy was put in place to address a growing crisis: the listing of salmon under the federal Endangered Species Act.

This strategy was the first of its kind in the nation: a collaborative initiative to restore and protect salmon runs across Washington State anchored in local expertise, experience, partnerships, and on-the-ground leadership. During the past 20 years, regional, scientifically rigorous, and locally produced recovery strategies have supported salmon recovery progress.

Washington has made great strides, with some species showing signs of recovery. Yet some salmon runs are continuing to decline. While many factors have changed across the social, political, and physical landscape, the sense of urgency has remained.

In 2018, Governor Jay Inslee launched the Southern Resident Killer Whale Task Force, and in 2019, he committed to updating the statewide salmon strategy.

Salmon Recovery Strategy Update Project Timeline

Fall 2019

  • Convene a steering committee and engage with tribes to design a collaborative and inclusive process

Winter 2019-2020

  • Conduct workshops, Webinars, and surveys with salmon recovery stakeholders and tribes to capture input
  • Analyze and synthesize input

Western Washington Workshop
Olympia, WA
Date: February 12, 2020
Time: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Eastern Washington Workshop
Location: Wenatchee
Date: March 3, 2020
Time: 1-4:30 p.m.

RSVP: To receive further workshop information and materials, please RSVP HERE.

Spring-Summer 2020

  • Produce recommendations for public review and comment
  • Present final recommendations to the Governor’s Office and Natural Resources Cabinet

Fall 2020

  • Incorporate feedback from the Governor’s Office and Natural Resources Cabinet and finalize strategy update

The Legislature has provided funding for this effort. Triangle Associates is facilitating.

Contact Us

Jt Austin
Senior policy adviser
Governor’s Office

Erik Neatherlin
Executive coordinator
Governor’s Salmon Recovery Office