The River Management Society has one paid staff plus a volunteer Board of Directors who rely on the work of many committees to carry out the goals of the Society. RMS members who volunteer to serve as committee members make lasting and invaluable contributions to RMS. If you are interested in becoming more involved with your professional society, please contact the main office. Standing committees are led by Board members but welcome participation by member volunteers. Committee charters are listed below.


Charter for Finance and Budget Committee


It provides for the establishment of an effective structure to guide financial and budgetary operations which may include, but are not limited to, finance and accounting, bookkeeping, bank accounts, filing taxes and reports, audits, contracts, merchandise sales and marketing, partnerships, grants, and consulting.


The primary purpose of the Finance and Budget Committee is to provide oversight and guidance to support the goals and programs of the Society. These include, but are not limited to, strategic and annual work plans, filing of periodic reports (taxes, audits, quarterly/annual financial reports to the Board and members), investments, contracts, partnerships and cooperative agreements. The Finance and Budget Committee is also responsible for the development of short-term and long-term financial and budget strategy that supports the goals of the Society.


Develop annual goals and an annual work plan consistent with approved policies and the strategic plan. The Annual Report (in sufficient detail to inform the board of the Society's financial condition) and proposed operating budget will be presented to the Board for consideration no less than 30 days prior to the annual Board meeting

Charter for Awards Committee

Approved April 5, 2012


The purpose of this committee is to promote awareness of the RMS Awards, provide awards and recognition to individuals who have made outstanding contributions is some aspect of river management.


This Committee shall be chaired by the National Secretary and include the Executive Director.  The committee must have a minimum of five members in addition to the chair and Executive Director.   Ideally there will be one member from each RMS chapter, provided no chapter may provide more than one member to this committee.


  • The call for nominations will be announced in the December issue of the River Management Journal and will also be sent (electronically or by US Mail) to the current Society membership in January.
  •  Award selection will be made in March.
  • If an Awards and Elections Committee member is nominated for an award, he/she will recuse themselves from the committee, but he/she may receive the award.
  • The identities of award recipients will be kept confidential until the determined date and location where the awards will be officially announced.
  •  If the Awards Committee feels that there are no qualified nominees for an award, the award may not be given.
  • The Awards Committee may nominate individuals for awards.
  •  Committee will used the criteria established for each award.  

Charter for the Succession Committee


The purpose of the succession committee is to identify, recruit and develop the future leadership of the RMS.   The scope of the committee’s work is expansive in nature; entailing looking both within and outside the organization for individuals able to lead or advise RMS.  Development of future leaders and advisors may include mentoring and other assistance at professional development.  Scope of work includes, but is not limited to, identifying candidates for National election.


The committee shall be chaired by the National Vice President.  Membership shall be all the chapter vice presidents.  The committee shall meet by phone or other electronic means no less than six times per year.


  • National elections are held on a three year cycle (2011, 2013, 2016…..)
  • Calls for nominations and officer position descriptions will be published in the June issue of the River Management Journal as well as be mailed to the current membership.
  • Nominations will be due to the Society’s business office no later than July 30 of the election year.
  • Ballots, including biographies, will be mailed to the current voting membership (Professional and Lifetime Members) no later than August 31. If timely, biographies will also appear in the River Management Journal
  • If no person has been nominated for an office, the Succession Committee will be responsible for nominating at least one person to run for the office.
  • Ballots will be due back to the Society’s business office no later than September 30.
  • Counting will be done by the Program Director and validated by a Succession Committee Member not running for a national office.
  • Officers will be announced in the December issue of the River Management Journal and assume the roles and duties of office on January 1.
  • Incoming and outgoing officers will be invited to attend any intervening Board meetings.
  • If a Succession Committee member is running for office, he/she will recuse themselves from the committee.
  • In the event of a tie, there will be a run-off election by the end of November

Charter for Public Policy Committee

Approved November 1998


The society can influence public policy on river management issues by being the voice of river management professionals. As a professional organization, the Society can provide expertise and professional opinions on public policy issues dealing with river and watershed management.  


The Committee will serve as the Society's eyes and ears on public policy matters. It should bring significant issues and trends to the attention of the Executive Committee in a timely fashion, along with any recommendation for appropriate action. Significant issues include those decisions or proposed actions which will have widespread impact on any of the following: protection of rivers and watershed values; professional river managers; public perceptions and support; and financial resources available for rivers and watersheds.

The Committee will accomplish its purpose through the monitoring and investigation of river and watershed legislative proposals and major policy decisions; dialoguing with fellow professional organizations, nonprofit citizen groups, and others to assess their impacts on rivers and watersheds; and discussing strategies to positively influence public policy decisions. While the Society should make its professional opinions known to policy makers and the public, it should not allow itself to take actions which make it appear to be a lobbying organization.

The Committee shall restrict its activities to those issues which have, or are likely to have, major impacts of a general or widespread nature. Except in unique circumstances which meet the above standard, the Society will not take a position on specific or local issues, such as state or federal scenic river designation, dam construction or reauthorization, or user allocations.


The Committee will identify and evaluate a significant public policy issues and recommend action on the issue(s) to the Executive Committee. Proposed actions can include, but are not limited to, the following: immediate telephone call by the President and/or others; letter from the President to the appropriate decision maker(s); presentation to the decision-making body; sending an action alert to the Society membership; and formation or joining with other groups in a coalition dedicated to the issue.


The Committee shall establish and maintain a dialogue and working relationship with other professional organizations and national nonprofit groups, as appropriate. This also may include subscribing to their newsletters, list serves and bulletin boards; serving on committees; and/or participating in their meetings or conference calls.


The Committee will consist of a total of seven persons and should include a representative of the following:  federal government; state government; local government; nonprofit organizations; and the private sector. A Chair, appointed by the President, will lead the Committee. A member of the Board shall serve as Committee Advisor and Liaison to the Executive Committee.


Members will serve a minimum of three years with staggered appointments.


While the majority of the Committee's work can be accomplished through conference calls, individual telephone and e-mail communications, the Committee should strive to get together in person at least once every two years.

Annual Report

The Committee shall prepare an annual report for presentation to the Board at least 30 days before the annual Board meeting. The annual report shall include the following: a summary of any trends that seem to be developing and their perceived impacts on river and watershed management; a brief description of the major policy initiatives and decisions identified and examined by the Committee, along with the actions recommended and taken by the Society, the decision maker, and others on each issue; and any recommendations for future actions by the Board and its membership.


Accompanying the Committee's annual report will be an accounting of the monies spent in the past year and a proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year.