Marine Resources Committee and Commission staff, top row left to right: Dana Oster, Helle Andersen, Cheryl Lowe, Sasha Horst, Lucas Hart. Lower row left to right: Frances Roberston, Kathleen Pozarycki, Tracy Alker, Anna Toledo, Elisa Dawson, Nicole Jordan, Austin Rose.

Reflecting on the year

As we settle in to the holiday season and look forward to the year ahead, it is important to remind ourselves of all we have achieved. A few things I think of are the thousands of hours Marine Resources Committee volunteers have dedicated to restoring and protecting the Northwest Straits; the new partnerships we have built and the old partnerships we have strengthened; and how gracefully the Northwest Straits Commission has aged over the last 20 years!

These strides can only be made when smart dedicated people commit to making a difference through collaboration, a philosophy our friends throughout the Northwest Straits Initiative have valued for two decades. Thank you for your commitment. We look forward to building on our achievements with all of you in 2019 and beyond. Enjoy a wonderful holiday and Happy New Year!     

Lucas Hart, Director

The Northwest Straits Commission is a regional coordinating body comprised of people who care about the marine areas where they live, and who work together to protect and restore marine resources.

The Northwest Straits Commission carries out regional conservation projects and supports the work of seven Marine Resources Committees through funding, technical support, training and regional coordination.

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More About Us and the Northwest Straits Region »

Northwest Straits Commission meeting - January 2019

January 25

Island County

  • Member Spotlight: Debbie Hopkins

  • Southern Resident Killer Whale Community Workshop 2.0

    San Juan

    "I will avoid using plastic straws" was one of many personal commitments to act from the 2017 San Juan County Community Workshop for Southern Resident Killer Whales. This month the San Juan MRC hosted the second Community Workshop to revisit those personal commitments and provide updates on the status of state and local efforts underway to support Southern Resident Killer Whale recovery.

    Approximately 60 members of the community, MRC, local nonprofits, research community, eco-tour operators and naturalists, educators, and local and state government came together to participate in meaningful discussion about the state of Southern Resident Killer Whales and how the community can take action. With increasing attention on the health of the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales, workshops like these provide an important opportunity to engage the community in local and state level policy and decision making.

    Learn more about the work that San Juan MRC is doing on their website, and follow them on Facebook

  • MRC Membership Opportunities


    Sending our thanks and best wishes to Doug Stark, who is resigning from Whatcom MRC to pursue new opportunities. Doug served on the MRC as well as on the Northwest Straits Commission, where he brought great enthusiasm and passion for conservation in the Salish Sea. We wish him the best of luck in his new endeavors!

    Thinking of joining an MRC?

    Whatcom has vacancies for the conservation and economic interest’s positions.

    Clallam MRC is seeking a person to represent marine trades. The application is available online here

    Island MRC and San Juan MRCs have vacancies too.

  • Plastic Free Salish Sea

    San Juan

    What would it take to have a Plastic Free Salish Sea? San Juan MRC produced a short documentary highlighting the activities going on around the county to reduce waste and particularly single use plastics. Watch it and consider how your community could reduce plastic waste!

Member Spotlight: Debbie Hopkins

Snohomish MRC

Debbie Hopkins is a true enthusiast for the Northwest Straits Initiative. Her 20-year background in public health inspired work in advocating for education and awareness at the intersection of health and environmental policy. At the MRC’s yearly retreat, she found herself signing up for nearly every MRC project! She supports Snohomish MRC’s ocean literacy and Port Susan shoreline armoring removal outreach, but really enjoys getting outdoors to do forage fish surveys during spawning season at Howarth Park. When asked what she enjoys most about MRC she said, "What really gets me excited to participate in projects and meetings every month is the interdisciplinary grassroots synergy of our group. Representatives from the tribes, the port, the parks, industry and education circles, all coming together to serve our community is very rewarding." We are glad to have you as part of the Northwest Straits family, Debbie!

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Upcoming Events

  • Jan


    Starlight Beach Walk 2019

    January 17
    7:00 PM-8:30 PM

    Join Snohomish MRC, Discovery Programs staff and the WSU Snohomish County Extension Beach Watchers for an evening of winter discovery under the stars. Attendees will explore the beach as the tide goes out, then return to the Visitor Station to enjoy hot beverages to take the chill off.

    Bring a flashlight and dress for the weather — the event will occur rain or shine. Sturdy footwear or rubber boots are recommended.

    All ages are welcome, and event is free and open to the public.

    Olympic Beach Visitor Station, 200 Admiral Way in Edmonds

  • Jan


    Northwest Straits Commission meeting - January 2019

    January 25

    Island County