Our Mission & Vision

Our mission is to protect, improve and advocate for water quality, riparian wildlife habitat, and sound land management in the Milwaukee, Menomonee, and Kinnickinnic River Watersheds.

We envision a future in which people from all walks of life can enjoy the healthy waterways of the Milwaukee River Basin.

Milwaukee Riverkeeper is a licensed member of the Waterkeeper Alliance, an international coalition ensuring clean water and strong communities.

We are a licensed 501(c)3 non-profit organization with the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, and a charitable licensed organization through the State of Wisconsin.

We Monitor.

We Monitor the rivers for oxygen, turbidity, bacteria, temperature and other indicators of water quality. Since 2006, we have trained hundreds of volunteers to test our waterways and we continue to run the largest volunteer water monitoring program in Wisconsin.

We Patrol.

We patrol our local waterways by foot and boat, surveying the shoreline for signs of erosion and other threats to water quality and wildlife habitat. We report sources of pollution to the authories, and work to find solutions to address our findings.

We Paddle.

During the warmer months, Milwaukee Riverkeeper organizes canoe and kayak events, be it a moonlight paddle or a daytime excursion. For your copy of Milwaukee Urban Water Trail map, visit milwaukeeriverkeeper.org

We Educate.

We educate citizens to become effective water advocates. Through seminars and events, weekly e-mail alerts, and quarterly newsletters, Milwaukee Riverkeeper keeps the public informed of critical matters affecting your waterways.

We Clean Up.

We mobilize volunteers to clean up hundreds of miles of rivers and their shores. Each spring, nearly 4,000 citizens participate in our Annual Spring Cleanup, resulting in the removal of tons of trash from across the watersheds.

We Advocate.

We advocate for stream restoration and improved public access to our river, for state and federal funding to remove contaminants, and for compliance with the Clean Water Act, the Great Lakes Compact and other laws to protect our rivers and neashore Lake Michigan.

  • 2017 Wisconsin Stream Monitoring Award
  • 2016Sweet Water Southeastern Wisconsin Watersheds Trust, Inc.’s OrganizationWatershed Champion
  • 2012 Volunteer Stream Monitoring Coordinator of the Year Award given to Joe Rath, Water Quality Specialist
  • 2010 American Greenways Award for Milwaukee Urban Water Trail
  • 2010 DNRPlanning Grant “Decadeof River Successes” Award
  • 2009 River Hero award from River Alliance of Wisconsin
  • 2008 Stream Monitor of the Year Award given to Cheryl Nenn, Milwaukee Riverkeeper
  • 2006 National Recreation Trail Designation from the US Department of the Interior for the Milwaukee Urban Water Trail
  • 2006 Keep Greater Milwaukee Beautiful IDEAL Award for Accountability
  • American Canoe Association Recommended Water Trail for 2006
  • 2005 Women Making Their Stamp on Metro Milwaukee Award given to Executive Director Lynn Broaddus, PhD, MBA
  • 2005 Make a Difference Day Award – One of 10 national awards given to honor volunteer efforts. Awarded to FMR in honor of our 2005 Kinnickinnic River Cleanup.
  • 2004 Wisconsin Leader in Law Award given to Karen Schapiro, Board Member
  • National American Rivers Award
  • River Alliance of Wisconsin River Champion Award
  • Wisconsin Trout Unlimited Award
  • Outstanding contribution to the Preservation of the Water Resource Award
  • Rockroller Award, Abel Corporation
  • 1996 Keep Greater Milwaukee Beautiful Clean and Green Team Award
  • Milwaukee River Basin Partnership Certificate of Appreciation