Strategic Planning Purpose          


The purpose of Umpqua Watersheds’ strategic planning process is to support the organization’s scientific, political, cultural, social and funding challenges to implement our mission and vision over the next 10 years.  The outcomes will be accomplished through thoughtful direction and sensible execution, all within the organization’s capabilities and the changing challenges it faces.


Umpqua Watersheds Vision, Mission & Goals



Umpqua Watersheds envisions a land of lush mountains and river valleys which sustain an abundance of clean water, diverse wildlife, and native fish runs.  These landscapes will enrich a community that values fulfilling jobs, diverse viewpoints, and the solitude of wild places.



Umpqua Watersheds is dedicated to the protection and restoration of the ecosystems of the Umpqua watershed and beyond through education, training, advocacy and ecologically sound stewardship.



Umpqua Watersheds will:


Advocate sound stewardship practices on private and public lands that sustain biodiversity and restore degraded lands and waterways.


Promote permanent protection for wilderness and roadless areas in southwestern Oregon.


Alert our community to ecosystem management issues in the interest of informed consent and increased participation in land management decisions.


Train youth and adults to develop expertise in natural resource sciences for careers in the ecological stewardship workforce.


Educate the public by expanding environmental understanding and appreciation and increasing awareness of the intrinsic value of high-functioning, intact ecosystems.


Improve communication and collaboration between the conservation community, public agencies, private landowners, commercial interests, and the public at large.


Monitor the activities of the federal, state and local agencies charged with the responsibility of land and water management in southwestern Oregon.


Provide leadership, support and motivation to local and regional grassroots conservationists.


Conduct educational, research and outreach projects that highlight conservation challenges and promote effective solutions.


Serve as a source of information on conservation issues and solutions.


Celebrate the natural beauty and majesty of the native forests and free-flowing waters of the Umpqua and beyond through regular outreach events.


Conservation Program Goals:  To protect communities and ecosystems from destructive management practices.

         Objectives of the Conservation Program are to:

  1.   Monitor and evaluate programs and projects of public land management agencies including but not limited to the National Forest, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Indian Affairs, National Parks Service, State and County lands.
  2.   Take appropriate protective action when management proposals violate sound science-based and/or legal principles.
  3.   Support local, regional and national conservation efforts.
  4.   Advocate for significant positive changes to the Oregon Forest Practices Act.
  5.   Ensure sound science is used in designing and implementing state and federal policies to improve ecological function while minimizing harm to ecosystems.
  6.   Search for opportunities to engage in authentic collaborative efforts in an attempt to shape agency policy.
  7. Achieve permanent wilderness protection for roadless areas in the Umpqua watershed and beyond through its Wilderness Committee.
  8. Develop methods to inspire our community to actively engage with the Conservation Committee.
  9. Develop Conservation Mentor Program to develop expertise in the mechanics and issues involved in the NEPA process to assist in writing effective comments and appeals.
  10. Facilitate and advocate on both a national and an international level to ensure our organization aligns with international efforts regarding climate change mitigation and adaptation. 
  11. Develop, encourage, educate, promote and actively advocate as well as inform constituents regarding climate change.


Short term (1-3 year) activities are:

  1.   Develop a funding plan to hire a paid Conservation & Legal Director. 
  2.   Monitor land management activities in the Umpqua basin and adjacent watersheds, and work collaboratively where possible with land management agencies and other partners to assure that the projects are a benefit to forest ecosystems and the local community.
  3.   Work with partners on policy and legislative issues that affect public lands and waterways, including strategic litigation of watershed management policy/projects.
  4.   Develop  a framework for supporting a network of volunteer conservation monitors to serve as our eyes and ears in the field.
  5.   Continue to work with the regional coalition of diverse organizations formed with the like-minded goal to promote the Crater Lake Wilderness proposal.
  6.   Continue to actively engage agencies, lawmakers and stakeholders with regard to the improving and expanding of the NW Forest Plan through the agency revision process.
  7.   Support listings of imperiled species, e.g., Spring Chinook, Lamprey, Umpqua Chub, and other diminished, threatened and endangered species, whether listed or not.
  8.   Apply the findings of Summer Low-Flow Report to mitigate cumulative ecological impacts where possible.
  9. Work with other conservation organizations to reverse policy decisions that are in conflict with our mission.

 Long term (4-10 year) activities are:

  1. Continue above items as needed and adapt to changes in ecological challenges.                                                                                    


Outreach Program Goals: To inspire our community to actively engage in Umpqua Watersheds’ vision, mission and goals.

Objectives of the outreach program are to:

1. Improve and maintain public awareness, trust, and accurate understanding of Umpqua Watersheds’ missions, goals, and accomplishments.
2. Provide the communication network to support other committees with their outreach.
3. Develop and enhance communication tools to reach the general public and increase membership.

4. Facilitate face-to-face interactions with the community.

5. Build volunteer infrastructure.

6. Expand KQUA radio station to full-power Non-Commercial Education to dramatically increase terrestrial signal.

7. Expand our strategic partnerships tto increase UW and partners to maximize exposure, leverage resources and increase effectiveness of our programs.

8. Develop the Umpqua Outback Community bandstand behind the UW building and work with partners to fully utilize it.

Short term (1-3 years) activities are:

1. Continue to produce a quality quarterly newsletter.
2. Continue to maintain an informative Website.
3. Continue to develop a dynamic social media presence.
4. Increased online fundraising and linkage to business members and event sponsors.
5. Recognize, support and promote our business sponsors.
6. Increase business and general memberships, and volunteer base by 25%. Investigate business sponsor discounts for active (paying) members.
7. Develop quarterly revenue generating social events.
9. Publish up-to-date informational brochures detailing our mission, goals and achievements.
10. Continue advertising committee meeting schedules to the public.
11. Continue to conduct after action reviews and record “lessons learned” from participation at all events.
12. Photo gallery database available on in UW Google Drive, website and social media.
13. Organize and/or digitize physical photos and other hard-copy documents.
14. Provide simple templates for committee chairs to provide agendas, notes, committee reports and volunteer hours.
15. Develop film and speaker event schedule and venue for repeated and consistent presentations.
16. Conduct yearly open house events at the UW office (when permitted).
17. Continue online calendar of events (one year out).
18. Watershed Moments monthly production.

Long term (4-10 years) activities are:

1. Continue items above as needed.
2. Create database of articles and science stories


Objectives of the Restoration Program are to:

1. Apply scientifically sound principles and practices to the restoration of ecosystem structure and function on degraded lands.
2. Collaborate with public and private partners to develop and implement innovative restoration projects which solve ecological problems.
3. Publicize the economic benefits of restoring fully functioning ecosystems (ecotourism, small business, etc.).
4. Support and promote ecological workforce training and development.

Short term (1-3 years) activities are:

1. Continue to contribute to documents and presentations justifying restoration principles, and work with regional partners to develop materials to promote principles to practitioners.
2. Continue Elk Creek and other collaborative efforts.
3. Participate with BLM, USFS and other public and private entities on post-fire responses to local wildfires.
4. Continue to advocate for protection and restoration of Spring Chinook and other native anadromous species habitat such as Umpqua Chub and Lamprey.
5. Continue feasibility studies and create a plan for mobile biochar production from restoration project byproducts.
6. Promote the results of the summer low flow study to justify sound conservation activities in our region.
7. Continue to participate in the Umpqua Oak Partnership, the Umpqua Native Plant Partnership, the North Umpqua Coalition, and other partnerships that promote ecological restoration.
8. Continue contributing content to “Radio Active Restoration Program” and other conservation-based KQUA podcasts.
9. Continue advocating for statewide status change for beavers in Oregon.
10. Develop strategies to address climate change-induced drought stress and pest outbreaks in local forests.
11. Continue collaborative work to convert biomass to biochar.
12. Continue to support and advocate for state scenic waterway and federal wild and scenic status for Umpqua Basin waterways, particularly the upper South Umpqua River.

Long term (4-10 years) activities are:

1. Continue items above as needed to improve ecosystem health.

2. Explore restoration project implementation strategies that integrate the utilization of currently nonmerchantable material for novel forest product production.
3. Research and choose 3 finished products using small diameter logs and/or other underutilized resources from local forests.
4. Continue to track and report restoration accomplishments to keep members and funders informed.


Education Program Goals: To provide life-changing experiences for learners of all ages that cultivate an appreciation for ecological systems, conservation practices, restoration processes, and the intrinsic value of wild places.

Objectives of the Education Program are to:

Continue to support rigorous, outcome-based curricula in ecology, natural history, and environmental science for college credit.

  1. Introduce the knowledge and tools needed to increase the proficiency of K-12 teachers to effectively provide lessons on environmental and scientific concepts. This could be measured by teachers attending training & utilizing these lessons/activities.
  2. Increase environmental appreciation and scientific understanding of K-12 students through environmental education programs and activities.
  3. Continue to develop and promote field-based opportunities for experiencing the natural world (through field trips, field work, mobile learning, ecotourism and edutourism) in the Umpqua and beyond.
  4. Increase community and individual resilience through outdoor educational opportunities
  5. Develop collaborative efforts with agency specialists and other professionals to provide authentic educational experiences and information on career opportunities.
  6. Facilitate community educational opportunities.
  7. Incorporate educational components in restoration, conservation, outreach activities so that we are capturing opportunities for hands-on learning.
  8. Internally – Solicit information from other UW programs/committees to disseminate to students and the general public (through MailChimp/Watershed Moments, etc.).
  9. Externally – Engage other UW programs/committees in providing educational information during all activities/events.


Short term (1-3 years) activities are:

1. Continue and expand K-12 programs, and continue to create activities for middle and high school students aligned with state standards and UCC’s Natural Resources Program.

a. Develop curriculum – Resource Guide for teachers, Home Explorer lessons for families including, but not limited to: restoration, recycling, proper waste disposal, indigenous culture/history, local flora/fauna, climate change, problem solving/STE(A)M, local environmental issues

2. Work with teachers to develop and deliver courses to regional K-12 students.
a. Annual training for local educators (Learning in the Umpqua Watershed)
3. Continue to recruit and support UW AmeriCorps members plus other education staff and volunteers.
4. Develop infrastructure necessary for Educational Ecotourism.
5. Continue annual SEEDS (Science Environment Education Discovery Seminar), in cooperation with UCC and local high schools.
6. Continue to partner with UNLSH (Umpqua Natural Leadership STEM Hub) (STEM = Science, Technology, Engineering, Math).
7. Increase opportunities for field trips, field work, mobile learning, ecotourism and edutourism in the Umpqua and beyond
8. Develop Science Advisory Council – track & state our stance on various issues, process for reviewing/evaluating position statements, soliciting expertise/perspectives
9. Expand our youth-initiated summer program (Kids for Nature) to provide access to outdoor, environmental education, nature art, etc. activities for local youths during summer break and other breaks.
10. Offer internships as a hands-on learning opportunity in partnership with UCC.
11. Provide quarterly volunteer trainings to educate people on new ways to get involved with the organization and to help facilitate educational programs.
12. Continue spring/summer youth campouts with an educational focus.

Long term (4-10 years) activities are:

1. Continue items above as needed.
2. Sponsor community symposiums/workshops consistent with UW’s Mission and Vision.
3. Provide long-term research opportunities to increase the understanding of ecosystem processes and recovery in SW Oregon.

Diversity/Equity/Inclusion Goals:

Objectives/Goals of the Diversity Team/Inclusion Committee are to:

  1. Create a welcoming atmosphere to all who care about the environment and want to protect the planet.
  2. Offer programs that are accessible to various types of people (being mindful of age, ability, financial/socioeconomic status, race, gender, sexual orientation, etc.)
  3. Make sure DEI statements are present and consistent for all programs, events, on our website, Facebook page, etc.
  4. Might fall under finance/grants – Ensure that our programs are available to diverse audiences/note requirements of grants as benefits to our organization – both for grants and to help further our mission in general — Look at all committees/all sections
  5. Strive to be a leader in our community in terms of equity and inclusion.

Short term (1-3 years) activities are:

  1. Begin all activities, programs, and events with a land acknowledgment + air on KQUA between programs, multiple times a day along with UW’s DEI Statement (“UW is committed to diversity, equity, inclusion…”)
  2. Take the lead to coordinate a conference among conservation organizations in Southern Oregon about increasing DEI in environmental nonprofits
  3. Create Diversity/Equity/Inclusion radio program → Start with part of the time for Station/Program Manager dedicated to DEI, could include internship in grants
  4. Add commitment to DEI in all job/position descriptions, board application packet…
  5. Offer DEI related training sessions (as well as books, movies, forums/panels) for staff, volunteers, and members to broaden our perspective, help us to learn about other cultures and experiences.
  6. Conduct an assessment… (example)
  7. Evaluate programs currently offered to see who/what groups we’re reaching & who we have yet to reach; what barriers to access exist within our organization?
  8. Ensure that programs offered are accessible to people of a wide range of ability levels.
  9. Collaborate with other committees to offer more events celebrating diversity and promoting an engagement with nature by all types of people.
  10. Partner with the Education Committee to develop an “Honorary Board Member” program to train/prepare people who’ve never served on a board to be fully engaged and comfortable (whether due to age or other exclusionary factors).
  11. Partner with Education Committee and local indigenous groups/organizations to design curriculum to teach about local indigenous culture and history, as well as indigenous peoples’ interactions with/stewardship of the Umpqua watershed.
  12. Reserve time slots on KQUA station & encourage people from diverse groups to host radio programs.

Long term (4-10 years) activities are:

  1. Look different as an organization – have a more diverse membership
  2. Increased partnerships with various organizations


“Protect the Best & Restore the Rest”