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Restoration Center Partnerships

Who Are the NOAA Restoration Center’s Partners?

NOAA’s more than 1,300 partners and 18 national and regional partnerships in coastal restoration are among the most loyal and dedicated supporters of our work to preserve the future of our coasts.

American Rivers is a national non-profit conservation organization dedicated to protecting and restoring rivers nationwide and to fostering a river stewardship ethic. In addition to protecting nationally significant rivers, their programs focus on dam removal and other river-related issues. Since 2001, more than 100 fish passage restoration projects have been funded under this partnership and are at various stages of implementation. NOAA and American Rivers jointly provide technical assistance to project proponents including advice on project design and engineering, identification of funding match, selection of contractors, compliance with permitting requirements, and community engagement.


As the conservation and research arm of the American Sportfishing Association, the FishAmerica Foundation is a dedicated leader in efforts to protect and restore the nation’s recreational fisheries habitat. FishAmerica has been a partner with the NOAA Restoration Center since 1998 to help communities implement coastal and marine habitat restoration projects at the local level to benefit the nation's fisheries and to improve sportfishing opportunities and success. This partnership, to date, has funded nearly 300 habitat restoration projects in 26 states and territories. More than $5.8 million, leveraged by nearly $9 million in non-federal funds, have supported on-the-ground and design projects that have restored, enhanced, or protected more than 10,500 coastal and riparian acres, and more than 450 stream miles.

The California Conservation Corps is oldest, largest and longest-running youth conservation corps. The mission of the California Conservation Corps is to engage young men and women in meaningful work, public service and educational activities that assist them in becoming more responsible citizens, while protecting and enhancing California’s environment, human resources and communities. The partnership with the Restoration Center began in 2004 to restore, enhance and conserve watershed, stream and estuary habitats throughout California that are vital to the recovery of salmon, steelhead and other marine organisms.


Center for Watershed Protection is an award-winning national nonprofit organization that works to protect, restore, and enhance streams, rivers, lakes, wetlands, and bays. Their objective is to create viable solutions and partnerships for responsible land and water management so that every community has clean water and healthy natural resources to sustain diverse life. This partnership will implement restoration projects and support capacity-building activities within U.S. states and territories  bordering coral reef ecosystems to reduce the impacts of land-based sources of pollution, primarily sediment, nutrients, and toxins.  The partnership also benefits from the support of NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program. The Center’s first-hand experience in Puerto Rico and elsewhere in the Caribbean coupled with their insight into NOAA’s conservation and restoration priorities will be key to implementing successful on-the-ground habitat restoration projects.



The California State Coastal Conservancy was established in 1976 as a state agency that uses entrepreneurial techniques to purchase, protect, restore, and enhance coastal resources. The Conservancy is a unique entity that works closely with government, citizens and the private sector and provides support for the state’s new multi-agency California Ocean Protection Council, which helps coordinate and improve the protection and management of California's ocean and coastal resources. Since 2007, the partnership has been working to fund and implement priority state-wide projects identified by both the Conservancy and NOAA, and priority projects identified by the Southern California Wetlands Recovery Project.

The Chesapeake Bay Trust is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization chartered in 1985 by the Maryland General Assembly to engage the public in the protection and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributary rivers and streams.  Funding provided by the Trust sparks on-the-ground change in communities throughout Maryland and works to cultivate a new generation of Bay stewards. At the Chesapeake Bay Trust, they believe that a heightened ethic of individual and community stewardship is essential to restoring and protecting the Chesapeake Bay. The Trust also believes in the power of examples to inspire and heighten the practice of environmental stewardship. Its goal is to increase stewardship through grant programs, special initiatives, and partnerships that support environmental education, on-the-ground restoration, and community engagement activities.


Ducks Unlimited (DU) seeks to improve the ecosystem functions and values of nearly every type of wetland habitat in North America. Ducks Unlimited is particularly concerned about the fate of coastal marshes and the values they provide, not only to waterfowl, but to all wetland dependent species of wildlife and fish, as well as people. DU believes coastal wetland restoration and sustainability, particularly in light of climate change, are some of the most important conservation issues that America will face in the coming decades.  Our national partnership with DU will restore coastal wetlands, including tidal and freshwater marshes along the Pacific Coast, the Gulf Coast, the Atlantic Coast, and the Great Lakes region.  In 2010, the partnership focused on the Cullinan Ranch Project in northern San Francisco Bay, which will restore 1,575 acres of tidal wetlands.

Founded in 1991, Ecotrustnonprofit organization that works to build a more reliable prosperity in the coastal bioregion stretching from northern California through British Columbia and Alaska. The organization acts as the convener and coordinator of the Whole Watershed Restoration Partnership. Ecotrust is dedicated to building Salmon Nation – a place where people and wild salmon thrive. NOAA and Ecotrust have been working together since 2007, working to restore the natural functions of whole watersheds in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho, and to amplify community-based partnerships focused on the strategic restoration of Pacific salmon and steelhead ecosystems.


The Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment (the Council) fosters cooperative actions and strives to maintain and enhance environmental quality and sustainable resources in the Gulf of Maine through restoration, education, prevention, and protection. The Governors of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine and the Premiers of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia created the Council in 1989, signifying their belief that the jurisdictions, because of their economic and cultural ties to the Gulf could best serve as stewards of their shared resource. Our partnership with the Gulf of Maine Council Habitat Restoration Partnership began in 2001 to conduct habitat restoration projects throughout the Gulf of Maine.

The Gulf of Mexico Foundation is a nonprofit corporation founded by citizens concerned with the health and productivity of the Gulf of Mexico. The foundation represents a wide range of interests–agriculture, business, fisheries, industry, tourism, and environment–and works to promote and fund restoration, research, education and conservation programs. Their focus encompasses areas that border the Gulf, including the five states (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida), and the US territories in the Caribbean (Puerto Rico and the USVI). Our Gulf of Mexico Community-based Restoration Partnership was established in 2001 and emphasized restoration in Gulf Ecological Management Sites that support grass-roots efforts to restore seagrass beds, oyster and coral reefs, marsh and wetland habitats, as well as many other unique and essential fish habitats in the Gulf of Mexico region. In all, NOAA has contributed over $3 million to support over 50 habitat restoration projects in the Gulf of Mexico region through this partnership, encouraging nearly equal matching financial contributions from non-federal partners.

The Gulf of Mexico Sea Grant College Programs are university-based programs that utilize research, extension, outreach and education to foster understanding, wise use and stewardship of coastal and marine resources.The Gulf programs serve a region of diverse coastal ecosystems - from the swampy marshes of Florida and Louisiana to the subtropical forests of Mississippi and Alabama and the barrier islands of Texas. The Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium facilitates the Gulf Sea Grant College Program's partnership with the NOAA's Restoration Center.

Hawai‘i Community Foundation  is the largest and one of the oldest philanthropic foundations in the state. Hawai‘i’s diverse and unique coastal and marine resources are vital to the social, cultural and financial well-being of communities in Hawai‘i. Because of the increasingly urgent need to create resilient and healthy human and natural communities in the face of mounting resource pressures, habitat restoration efforts are a significant priority both locally and nationally. The Hawai‘i Community Foundation and Restoration Center partnership funds diverse, community-led restoration projects that serve to not only provide an environmental benefit, but community benefit as well.


The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) is a leader in protecting and restoring the health of our natural habitats, ecosystems and wildlife. NWF and its partners are helping wildlife and ecosystems adapt to current and future impacts from climate change. The Federation advocates for national and international policy and legislation that will cut greenhouse gas emissions to and works to safeguard wildlife and their habitats from the impacts of climate change.  NWF has become one of the conservation community’s leading voices on ecosystem-oriented climate adaptation practice and policy, and has led major research studies to identify the potential impacts of sea-level rise on coastal habitats. Through our new partnership, the Federation will provide technical support and expertise to ensure that restoration projects funded through the Restoration Center are “climate smart.” This includes working with potential grantees on project design and implementation, with careful attention to accommodating or countering projected climate change impacts to a particular region.  Initial work will focus in the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay regions.


The Nature Conservancy  is an international, non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the plants, animals, and natural communities that represent the diversity of life on earth by protecting the lands and waters they need to survive. The Nature Conservancy’s Marine Initiative aims to improve existing marine conservation efforts by developing new and innovative approaches and tools that will link efforts across land and sea. The Restoration Center’s partnership with The Nature Conservancy began in 2001 to protect marine biodiversity though habitat restoration with an emphasis on science, community-based cooperation, and strong collaboration. The partnership funds restoration activities nationwide across a range of habitat types, with an interest in native shellfish restoration projects that emphasize the services society derives from healthy and functional shellfish ecosystems.


The Puget Sound Partnership is a community effort of citizens, governments, tribes, scientists and businesses working together to restore and protect Puget Sound. Despite its size, Puget Sound is ecologically delicate; and while its symptoms of trouble are not easily visible, they are undeniable and getting worse. The charge given to the Puget Sound Partnership by Governor Gregoire and the Legislature is to create a real Action Agenda that turns things around and leads to a healthy Puget Sound. Their Action Agenda will prioritize cleanup and improvement projects, coordinate federal, state, local, tribal and private resources, and make sure that everyone is working cooperatively. The Puget Sound Partnership bases decisions on science, focus on actions that have the biggest impact, and hold people and organizations accountable for results. Their goal is to make Puget Sound healthy again, and create a roadmap for how to get it done.



Restore America's Estuaries is a leader in national efforts to protect, conserve and restore our Nation’s estuaries. Its mission is to restore one million acres of estuary habitat. Since 2000, Restore America’s Estuaries has been working with us to preserve the nation's network of estuaries by protecting and restoring the lands and waters essential to the richness and diversity of life. Restore America’s Estuaries is a coalition of 11 of the Nation’s most effective community-based conservation organizations that are working to protect and restore coastal estuaries. The RAE coalition consists of:

The Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership (SARP) is a regional collaboration of natural resource and science agencies, conservation organizations, and private interests developed to strengthen the management, conservation, and restoration of aquatic resources in the southeastern United States. In 2007, the Restoration Center established a partnership with SARP, in association with the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. This partnership supports projects that restore coastal habitats in the nine Southeastern coastal states that border the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic Coast. Projects funded in past years have restored oyster reef, salt marsh, mangrove, and seagrass habitats

Trout Unlimited (TU) is the nation's largest grassroots coldwater fishery organization. Their mission is to conserve, protect and restore North America's trout and salmon fisheries and their watersheds. This mission is accomplished on local, state and national levels with an extensive and dedicated volunteer network. The national organization employs professionals who conduct habitat restoration projects and work with TU's 125,000 grassroots volunteers in 500 chapters nationwide to keep them active in conservation issues.