Executive Director Letter

Headshot of Laura Blackmore, executive director of the Puget Sound Partnership.

Dear partners,

This week, May 8–12, is Puget Sound Day on the Hill, an annual event organized by the Partnership and the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission. Representatives from tribes, state agencies, local governments, nonprofits, and businesses, along with concerned residents, travel to Washington, D.C., to lend their voices in support of action to save Puget Sound and uphold tribal treaty rights.

Last year, Congress delivered some big wins for Puget Sound recovery, passing parts of the PUGET SOS Act and substantially increasing funding for recovery—including $54 million for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Puget Sound Geographic Program, which helps fund projects that improve water quality, enhance fish passage, increase salmon habitat, and protect shorelines.  

Those goals were achieved in part thanks to the many advocates for Puget Sound who have shown up – and spoken up – at our Puget Sound Day on the Hill events over the last seven years. This year in Washington, D.C., we will celebrate the culmination of that tireless work and emphasize that we must hold ground and prevent any whittling away of our hard-won progress.

This issue of Making Waves showcases how the funding we’ve fought for over the years has produced results on the ground.

The National Estuary Program and the Puget Sound Geographic Program have provided key funding for hundreds of projects throughout the Puget Sound region. Our new video highlights a few of the people and projects that are putting that funding to work and making a difference to the health of the Puget Sound ecosystem.

This issue of Making Waves also includes articles about the collaborative work that’s addressing challenges for Puget Sound recovery:

  • The Stormwater, Habitat, and Shellfish Strategic Initiatives tackle multiple issues that are key to Puget Sound recovery. The Strategic Initiative Lead teams bring together people and ideas to carry out projects that build climate resilience, restore habitat, recover species, and improve our understanding of the ecosystem.

Every year, I look forward to Puget Sound Day on the Hill, because the event reflects on a smaller scale what I see all the time in the Puget Sound recovery community: the power of collective effort. Together, we can and must recover this unique place for ourselves and for generations to come.


Laura Blackmore

Executive Director,
Puget Sound Partnership