Federal environmental rollbacks, our new "Advocacy Tacklebox," women's program planning, internship opportunities, and so much more! ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Dear supporter,

There are big things happening at Northwest Steelheaders, and we’re excited to tell you about them! 

  • We’re moving out! Starting August 10th, the Northwest Steelheaders staff will officially be working remotely for the next 12 months. This choice was made due to the unpredictability of covid-19. Don’t fret, we will be finding a new home after all of this blows over. We will share our new mailing address and contact information as soon as it's all set in stone. Please email office@anws.org if you have any questions.
  • Tools for you and your community: We just launched our Advocacy Tackle Box! After receiving recurring questions on how members can leverage their own voices for our fisheries we designed a toolkit or “tackle box” as a one-stop-shop for you! Here you can find easy tools and information to maximize your impact on issues you care about.
  • NEW angling program! We are creating an angling space for women, by women. We will host our first women’s fishing retreat aimed at building relationships and camaraderie. Whether you're a beginner or seasoned angler, at Northwest Steelheaders we seek to provide a space for anyone who wants to pursue our shared passion. Learn more and sign up.
  • Virtual Fall Fundraiser and Fishing Tournament: Covid-19 won’t be stopping us from having fun this fall. Later this month we will be announcing our plans to raise funds for angling education, including our first virtual fishing tournament. You won’t want to miss this!

Thank you from myself and the entire Northwest Steelheaders staff for your continued support. Now, more than ever, fish need voices like yours and we’re happy to have you by our side.

I hope you're finding time on the water during these hot summer days, friend.

Forward we go, together.

Chris Hager, Executive Director


New Salmon "Recovery" Plan is Built to Flop

By Betsy Emery, Organizer and Outreach Coordinator

To save the endangered populations of salmon and steelhead in the Columbia and Snake rivers, the Oregon District Court tasked federal agencies with developing a comprehensive, fish-friendly plan for operating the Columbia River Hydrosystem, which comprises eight dams on the Columbia and Snake Rivers in Oregon and Washington. This “new” plan resembles the previous five plans that failed to restore fish runs or pass legal scrutiny.

The agencies have rejected desperately needed innovative solutions in favor of the status quo. Their own scientific assessment determined that removing the four lower Snake River dams was the only alternative that would improve salmon returns enough to allow these species to recover from the risk of extinction. Ignoring the results of their own analysis, the agencies selected a management strategy very similar to the flexible spill agreement currently guiding river management -- a strategy that we know is failing salmon and steelhead throughout the basin.

“This plan is placing us another two steps back from the proactive measures needed to save our iconic steelhead and salmon species,” Executive Director Chris Hager said. “Countless businesses, communities and ecosystems cannot sustain the continued loss of a resource that this plan disregards. Federal agencies are choosing to ignore pathways to recovery.”

You can take action today! Email your elected officials, sign up for our campaign email list, and sign our petition.

Latest Environmental Rollbacks Threaten Fish

By Betsy Emery, Organizer and Outreach Coordinator

Over the past few months, the Trump administration has finalized two new rules that dramatically roll back freshwater protections under the Clean Water Act (CWA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). 

NEPA's new rules exempt large-scale federal infrastructure projects such as roads, pipelines, bridges and power plants from an environmental review process. Instead of being required to assess the cumulative and indirect effects of a proposed project, environmental review is limited to analyzing “reasonably foreseeable” impacts — a legal term sure to be interpreted narrowly, which will in turn stunt the nation’s ability to meaningfully plan for the future.

The new Clean Water Act Section 401 Certification rule guts state and Tribal rights to enforce water quality standards within their jurisdictions. Now, states only have one year to review water quality permit applications, and if they exceed one year, the state waives its delegated authority to attach conditions to mitigate impacts. It can take multiple years to gather appropriate data about the impacts of a large, complex facility and the mitigation measures that are necessary.

These new rules decrease transparency and accountability around projects that impact our waterways. Removing freshwater protections will severely limit our ability to recover endangered salmon and steelhead species in the Pacific Northwest.

Learn more...


Letter: We Need Public Utility District's Help to Save our Salmon

By Norm Ritchie, At Large Board Member

Appears in the Headlight Herald as a letter to the editor.  

Tillamook PUD provides a great service for its customers. Their ability to return power to us during storms is heroic but for a long time, they have been on the wrong side of the Columbia River salmon declines. Power is incredibly important, but healthy salmon populations are also important for our quality of life as Northwesterners. Read the full letter and learn how you can write a letter to your local paper.

Photo by Evan Smogor

Help Us Plan Our New Women's Program!

We are thrilled to announce that Northwest Steelheaders is planning a Women's Program, which is intended to help bridge the gap between fishermen and women in order to create a more equitable, inclusive, and strong society of conservation-minded anglers. Currently, we are gauging interest in this program among our membership and the wider angling community. We are seeking valuable input from women interested in angling (no experience necessary). If this sounds like you, please learn more here and then take this survey to share your ideas! We want to know how we can best serve you. If you have any questions, please contact Alix Soliman at asoliman@anws.org.


Buy Raffle Tickets for a Trip Guided by the Littleafs

We are raffling a walk and wade trip for two with Littleleaf Guides, valued at $600. Tickets are just $20 each, and we will sell a limit of 35. The winner will be announced on August 21. Alysia and Elke Littleleaf are a dynamic guiding duo with access to 39 miles of private, unspoiled fishing on the Native side of the Deschutes River. The Littleleafs eat, sleep, and breathe fishing - spinning, fly fishing, spey fishing - you name it. They know the Deschutes like the back of their hand, and they will take you on the adventure of a lifetime! They are also incredible supporters of Northwest Steelheaders' advocacy and education programs and they do grassroots work on their own time to help preserve Pacific Northwest watersheds. 

Buy your tickets here!


Our Advocacy Tacklebox Makes it Easy to Speak Up

Do you want to have a greater say in how Oregon and Washington set fisheries policy? Northwest Steelheaders' staff and lobbyists need help communicating the interests and concerns of sportfishers with elected officials. We need YOUR VOICE. You can become an advocate for abundant and healthy recreational fisheries by contacting your legislators, speaking at a public forum, signing a petition, or writing a letter to your local newspaper editor. In our new Advocacy Tacklebox, we explain how legislative affairs are conducted and offer quick guides on how to leverage your voice effectively. 

Learn more...


View the artwork of the winners and honorable mentions in this slide show.

Youth Art Contest  Winners Announced

We hosted an art contest to engage OR and WA students in thinking about salmon conservation. We sought artwork portraying our mission to dive headlong into new waters for salmon and steelhead conservation, and the pieces were judged based on their concept, composition, color, and expression. First-place winners will receive a $100 check and runner-ups will receive a gift from National Wildlife Federation. Our grand prize winner, Audrey F., will receive a fishing trip with a Steelheaders volunteer in addition to $100. 

Internship Applications are Open!

We are now offering two part-time, unpaid internships. Our Digital Content and Communications Internship is catered to undergraduates, while our Advocacy and Organizing Internship is built for graduate students. Among other benefits, we offer $300 for intern-specific professional development, which may include training, online courses, conferences, or other resources that will help each intern achieve their specific career goals. Applications for our Fall 2020 - Spring 2021 internships must be submitted by September 21st, 2020. 

Learn more and apply


Find Your Dream Home & Support Northwest Steelheaders

As an affiliate member of the Northwest Steelheaders, Tim Wilson will donate $1000 if any Steelheader works with Tim or refers him to friends and family to purchase or sell real estate and the transaction closes. $500 will go to the procuring member's chapter and $500 will go to the association's general fund. To date, Tim has raised over $11,000 for the Northwest Steelheaders through this program. View Tim's webpage and contact him at timwilsonsellshomes@gmail.com


Support us when you shop!

When you visit https://smile.amazon.com/ and designate "Association of Northwest Steelheaders Inc" under the search bar before you make a purchase, Amazon will donate 0.5% to our organization. While this seems like just a small drop in the pond, it really adds up and is easy to set up.


Coming Up

Itchin’ for Twitchin’ with the Sandy River Chapter, Sept. 2 @ 7pm

Learn how to twitch for Coho: techniques, gear, and methods for rivers and streams. Join us at Glenn Otto Park, 1208 Historic Columbia River Hwy, Troutdale, OR 97060.

Get Involved

Become a Volunteer! As a volunteer-driven organization, we thrive when you take action on issues you care about. Learn more...


Follow us if you don't already!

Association of Northwest Steelheaders
6641 SE Lake Rd. Milwaukie, OR 97222
(503) 653-4176