Steward of the Year Award

2016: Dave Ripp, Executive Director, Port of Camas-Washougal

Dave Ripp is a long-time advocate for the Columbia River, and we are proud to honor him as our Annual Steward of the Year. 

The Port of Camas-Washougal’s mission is to bring jobs, infrastructure, and recreational opportunities to East Clark County. Dave excels in all three areas. Under his leadership, the Port continues to expand; attracting 47 tenants in a variety of businesses to the 430-acre industrial park and adjacent 120 acre Steigerwald Commerce Center. They were recently awarded a $2.8 million grant from the US Economic Development Administration for an expansion.

Dave’s work and his results demonstrate his passion for a healthy Columbia River enjoyed by all. The Port recently opened a new 13.25 acre Washougal Waterfront Park and Trail, holds a summer concert series at Parker’s Landing, provides beach access at Captain William Clark Park at Cottonwood Beach, and serves as a host site for the Lower Columbia River Water Trail.

Dave has been a critical partner in moving the Estuary Partnership’s Steigerwald Habitat Restoration and Flood Control Project forward—tirelessly advocating for the fish, wildlife, and local community, who will benefit from this project.

Prior to joining the Port of Camas Washougal, Dave was Executive Director of the Port of Woodland for 13 years. He returned to his hometown to serve in that capacity in 1994.

Dave embodies the Estuary Partnership’s values of strong collaboration, supporting healthy ecosystems, getting the community outdoors, and maintaining a vibrant economy.


2015: Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership Founders

2014: Hillary Barbour, Office of US Congressman Earl Blumenauer

2013: The Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde

2012: The Honorable Joan Dukes, Northwest Power & Conservation Council
           Louise Solliday, Oregon State Government

2011: Amy Borde, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
           Lyndal Johnson, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
           Jennifer Morace, US Geological Survey

2010: The Honorable Jeff Merkley, US Senate
          The Honorable Earl Blumenauer, US House of Representatives

2009: Susan Holveck, Beaverton School District

2007: Alice Ott Middle School students, teachers, and principal
          Girls Scouts of the Columbia River Council

2006: Jeff Rooklidge & Wahkiakum High School students, Wahkiakum High School

2005: Wilson Cady, Georgia-Pacific

2002: Louise Solliday, Office of Governor Kitzhaber

2001: Terry Hussman, Washington Department of Ecology (posthumous)


About the Award

Restoring and protecting the lower Columbia River and Estuary requires the efforts of many people and groups. We recognize and celebrate the hard work and dedication it takes to protect and restore the river with our Steward of the Year Award. 

The annual award, instituted in 2001 and presented during our Annual Dinner & Gala, recognizes exceptional stewardship by a group, entity, organization, business, government agency, or individual towards the restoration and protection of the lower Columbia River and Estuary. 

Stewards of the Year represent any sector of the community and any area of focus of the Estuary Partnership: habitat protection, water quality, land conservation and protection, education and community engagement, or leadership.  These recipients have all demonstrated this outstanding stewardship and commitment to the protection and conservation of the lower Columbia River.