Nicole Silk

Understanding how people relate to water and what water needs to remain healthy has been a central tenet of Nicole’s professional career for more than 25 years. She believes strongly in the role of local champions and river enthusiasts in creating a future where everyone has access to clean water and healthy rivers.

As President of River Network, she is responsible for helping River Network fulfill its mission as a backbone organization that connects people to save rivers, including the 6,000+ groups working at the local level across the United States. River Network’s mission is to empower and unite people and communities to protect and restore rivers and other waters for all life. River Network is the only national nonprofit organization whose sole purpose is to connect and strengthen the nationwide network of local water protectors. It provides training, tools, and resources to help these leaders succeed.

Prior to joining the staff at River Network, Nicole worked at The Nature Conservancy (TNC)​​​ for 19 years as Managing Director of The Nature Conservancy’s Global Freshwater Team, and in other roles.  Before TNC, Nicole worked on law and policy aspects of conservation in the US and Costa Rica and as a professional river guide leading adventures around the world.

Nicole has written and contributed to several scholarly scientific and legal papers and books, served on numerous boards and advisory committees, convened hundreds of conferences and learning events on freshwater topics, and pioneered new websites, social networks, national campaigns, and online communities to advance faster progress toward healthy rivers. She holds a J.D. from the University of California, Davis and a B.A. in economics and ecology from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Nicole is based in Boulder, Colorado. When she is not working, she spends as much time as possible outdoors, including longer adventures on rivers with her family and friends. Away from technology and daily routines, these trips provide an unparalleled opportunity to remain connected with nature’s mysteries.

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