Strategic Leadership & Collaboration

Promote strategic leadership and collaboration to support Puget Sound recovery.
Recovery of Puget Sound is a collective, long- term endeavor that requires focused and dedicated leadership and collaboration. Many elements enable this leadership and collaboration. Hundreds of partners convene throughout the year through boards and networks such as the Leadership Council, Ecosystem Coordination Board, Puget Sound Salmon Recovery Council, Science Panel, Puget Sound Ecosystem Monitoring Program, Strategic Initiative Advisory Team, and Local Integrating Organization committees. Organizations across sectors and governments, like the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, Canadian government and provincial agencies and organizations, Governor’s Salmon Recovery Office, Maritime Blue, environmental organizations, and natural resource businesses identify and advocate for recovery priorities. Strategic Leadership and collaboration across partners require a unique approach with the Partnership, the Governor’s Salmon Recovery Office, National Estuary Program, and Canadian partners providing leadership and collaboration within the Salish Sea region, as well as with Local Integrating Organization conducting similar activities at the local level to generate simultaneous, coordinated, and integrated planning and action to advance ecosystem recovery.

The achievements in Puget Sound recovery to date are a function of the strategic leadership and collaboration that partners have brought to address recovery challenges (for example, the 2021 Governor’s salmon strategy update). Yet key gaps remain. Puget Sound has not been a sustained top priority for leaders and decision-makers that have resulted in needed policy change. The coalition of organizations demanding a healthy Puget Sound falls short of the breadth and depth needed to affect transformational change. Diversity, equity, inclusion, and environmental justice are just beginning to be addressed through the steps outlined in recent legislation such as the Healthy Environment for All (HEAL) Act. Key opportunities for this strategy around exchanging information with partners align with the goals for Strategy C that focus on interdisciplinary research to promote diverse ways of knowing and coordinating the knowledge network across Puget Sound. This strategy also aligns with the funding priorities described under Strategy A, since both focus on developing strategic plans for funding allocation. The actions and key opportunities below begin to address these gaps and needs.

Strengthen the leadership framework to guide the Puget Sound recovery effort and set action and funding priorities. (ID #123)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Lead the development of Vital Sign Indicator targets as benchmarks for success and focal points for partner action and investments;
  • Develop a strategic plan for the medium- to long-term allocation of state funding toward salmon recovery priorities as outlined in the regional and watershed chapters of the Puget Sound Salmon Recovery Plan;
  • Effectively engage local partners like LIOs to share information and increase transparency;
  • Implement and support local and regional projects to remove barriers to recovery across Puget Sound;
  • Complete the 2026-2030 Action Agenda as the region’s next roadmap to ecosystem recovery.

Advance diversity, equity, inclusion, and environmental justice in Puget Sound recovery efforts. (ID #128)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Align with the policy and equity goals outlined in Strategy C and Strategy 26 to implement the Healthy Environment for All (HEAL) Act;
  • Develop a Puget Sound Partnership agency-wide diversity, equity and inclusion, and environmental justice action plans;
  • Integrate diversity, equity, inclusion, and environmental justice principles by conducting outreach with vulnerable populations and underserved communities and inviting them to be voting members of the Partnership’s Boards and LIOs;
  • Reduce barriers, particularly for vulnerable populations and underserved communities, to participate in the Partnership’s boards and overall recovery work by promoting hybrid approaches that also reduce emissions;
  • Ensure that Puget Sound recovery funding streams are adapted to support diversity, equity, inclusion, environmental justice, and the rights of tribal nations.

Elevate Puget Sound recovery as a priority for leadership at all levels. (ID #208)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Engage in policy reform through local, state, and federal legislative processes;
  • Support the Governor’s Office in making Puget Sound and salmon recovery the cornerstone of Governor Inslee’s third term of office;
  • Create a Puget Sound National Program Office with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency;
  • Leverage strategic leadership within caucuses.

Broaden and deepen the coalition demanding a healthy Puget Sound. (ID #209)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Continually assess and improve inclusiveness of decision-making and planning spaces;
  • Build the capacity of and remove barriers for local partners, specifically LIOs, to advance shared local and regional recovery priorities;
  • Cultivate and expand relationships with and leadership by partners in the private sector;
  • Build out transboundary coordination, specifically increased cooperation and coordination with tribal nations and First Nations, to further cross-border engagement and progress on issues of importance across the Salish Sea;
  • Improve LIOs’ strategic partnerships by increasing the organizational and governmental diversity of their voting membership.

Strengthen relationships and understanding to enhance collaboration. (ID #210)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Ensure broad understanding of, recognition of, and support for tribal nations’ treaty and sovereign rights and tribal nations’ role as co-managers of natural resources (i.e., Boldt Decision);
  • Ensure that “free, prior and informed consent” is well provided for when developing legislative actions and policies;
  • Effectively engage local partners, such as LIOs, to share information and increase transparency;
  • Increase opportunities for comment and partnership from LIOs to support increased collaboration;
  • Convene Leadership Council-led forums to celebrate successes and support removing barriers to progress in the recovery effort.
Implementation Considerations

No related implementation considerations at this time. 

What We're Measuring

Puget Sound recovery will be successful with continued strong relationships across the region based on good communication, trust, and transparency. Strong relationships will lead to integrated approaches across sectors and jurisdictions. Engagement will be inclusive and accessible with processes that include broad audiences and partners and center Puget Sound as a sustained priority for leadership across the region. Leaders and decision-makers will understand why and how to integrate climate and human wellbeing into funding and prioritization decisions and legislative actions, policies and funding will honor local priorities developed through existing networks. Success will also look like investments that are utilized strategically to strengthen our recovery work.

Current Legislative Actions