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Wednesday, October 16, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Down To Earth

The Spokane Riverkeeper: “Moving on, but still defending our waters”

Bart Mihailovich - my dear friend and DTE co-founder - released a bittersweet message today. As proud as were are to have the Spokane River, I can't think of a better guardian of our watershed. It will be sad to see him go but congratulations are in order and he will be sticking around!

From the Riverkeeper: It's with a lot of emotion and great memories that I write to tell you that after four unforgettable years I am leaving my position serving as YOUR Spokane Riverkeeper to pursue a new endeavor with Waterkeeper Alliance.

Earlier this week I accepted an offer to join Waterkeeper Alliance as the new Affiliate Coordinator, which will have me working on a new initiative to increase the number of Waterkeepers worldwide. The new Waterkeeper Affiliate program is an audacious new drive to identify, recruit, train, and elevate leaders around the world to step up and become new Waterkeeper Affiliate programs in watersheds around the world that are in need of strong leaders to fight for clean water.


I am leaving this job, which from day one truly was and is a dream job, and I’m leaving on great terms with the incredible staff and board here at the Center for Justice. I was fortunate enough to come in to the Center during a transitional period, a period we called Center 2.0 and I’m leaving knowing that this organization which will celebrate its 15th anniversary this year will be around for another 50. I also came in to the Center to become the Spokane Riverkeeper during a very transitional time in this community and the way it viewed and understood the Spokane River and other water resources. I’ll have much more to say about this in future blog posts and a good-bye eNewsletter, but I can say without doubt that because of the great work of the Center and Spokane Riverkeeper and so many of our great partners and allies and all of you supporters, that the Spokane River is cleaner now than it was five years ago.

Now it’s time for someone else to become the Spokane Riverkeeper and to build off the foundation that has been started; to push forward and continue to fight for a Fishable and Swimmable Spokane River. I officially transition out on July 2nd, and I have agreed (and it really wasn’t even a consideration) to help Executive Director Rick Eichstaedt and the staff and board and new Riverkeeper through the transition. We are now accepting applications for the position of Spokane Riverkeeper and you can see the job description at the following link HERE

I want to thank you all for your support over the last four years, to me personally and to the Spokane Riverkeeper program and the vision of a clean Spokane River. This endeavor could not be possible without the tireless work of each and every one of the current and past staff members of the Center for Justice, the countless volunteer and intern hours, the support of the Board, the backing of our members and funders and every encouraging (and critical) comment, Tweet, etc that we’ve received. A clean Spokane River is the most important resource we have in this community. Actually I take that back. This community is the most important resource we have. I trust that you all will support each other; that you, our supporters, will get behind the next Riverkeeper and continue to fight for clean water, and that our River will continue to support all of us.

I will be staying in Spokane and I will become the biggest supporter for the next Spokane Riverkeeper, and I’ll remain an outspoken advocate for a Fishable and Swimmable Spokane River.

From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU!
Bart Mihailovich
YOUR Spokane Riverkeeper




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Down To Earth

The DTE blog is committed to reporting and sharing environmental news and sustainability information from across the Inland Northwest.