Potomac Riverkeeper Incorporated
Rating: 5 stars 11 reviews
Issues: Environment, Water
Location: 1100 15th Street, NW 11th floor Washington DC 20005 USA
Programs: Potomac Riverkeeper has two Riverkeepers (Potomac and Shenandoah) who are on-the-water defenders and advocates for the river. PRK's main programs are: Clean Water Enforcement Program. The goals of the Clean Water Enforcement Program are to 1) identify and prioritize major pollution problems on the Potomac and its tributaries; 2) seek polluter compliance with environmental laws; 3) promote law reform; and 4) promote government accountability for enforcement and compliance. Healthy Rivers = Healthy Communities Program. Goals of this program are to 1) prevent pollution; 2) raise community awareness; 3) build partnerships to help achieve other strategic objectives; and 4) engage members and the public.
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Potomac Riverkeeper accomplishes many things that larger, similar organizations do not. They also communicate their actions and activities much better, more frequently, across more effective media. Somehow they manage to convey an image that suggests both "swift, energetic, and ever present" and also "mature, efficient, and thorough". Donors have no doubt their contributions are applied well to real problems. They've taken action in the upper watershed that was overlooked by other groups (for decades) and followed through with legal action when the polluter ignored a judge's mandate.
I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...
I teach a graduate course in Watershed Science, Education and Leadership at a nearby land grant university. I learned of the Potomac Riverkeeper in researching the advocacy/leadership section of the course, and the next year began communicating with them about my own concerns for the South Branch of the Potomac River. Over the last two years, they have physically investigated each report I submitted about unusual discoveries, and they act. I use them as an example of thoughtful, effective advocacy.
If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...
I hope to someday help them raise the funds to provide a "keeper" for each of the Potomac's main tributaries (North Branch, South Branch, Shenandoah, Monocacy. I'm already looking to help them partner to train teachers in delivering "meaningful watershed experiences" here in the South Branch watershed.
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Action based: efficient, effective and communicative.
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