News from the Puget Sound Partnership

Alicia Lawver
(360) 464-2011


Inslee appoints Russell Hepfer to Leadership Council

Governor Jay Inslee has appointed Russell Hepfer – a Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe member, fisherman and natural resources policymaker – to the Puget Sound Partnership’s Leadership Council, which serves as the state agency’s seven-member governing body. The Partnership is a non-regulatory agency charged with mobilizing community, regional, and state efforts to restore Puget Sound.

“Russell Hepfer brings a tribal perspective as well as hands-on experience with the Elwha dam removal project and knowledge of what it takes to rebuild an ecosystem that welcomes salmon home,” said Governor Jay Inslee. “His rich knowledge of the complex voices and issues involved in Puget Sound recovery work are a welcome addition to the Puget Sound Partnership’s Leadership Council.”

Hepfer started in natural resources as a water quality technician in 1995. He has served on the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission for the past 18 years and also on the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribal Council for 16 years, formerly as chair and now as vice chair. Hepfer’s service to the community is broad-reaching, and includes being his tribe’s delegate to the Indian Policy Advisory Committee for the Washington Department of Social & Health Services since 2005, and to the Coast Salish Gathering since its inception in 2006.

Hepfer’s term runs through June 25, 2018.

About the Partnership

The Puget Sound Partnership is the state agency that leads and coordinates the efforts of governments, tribes, scientists, businesses and nonprofits to set priorities for Puget Sound recovery, implement a regional recovery plan, and ensure accountability for results. For more information, go to

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