About us


Friends of the Eel River works for the recovery of the Wild and Scenic Eel River, its fisheries, and communities.

Our Work

In 1994 a small group of dedicated Eel River enthusiasts came together to advocate for the river and its fish. Our first action was to intervene in proceedings of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). This was the start of Friends of the Eel River and our journey to save the Eel River’s struggling salmon and steelhead.

This is truly a critical time for the Eel River. We have the opportunity to remove the two dams and out of basin diversion on the upper mainstem Eel. And we have some truly remarkable native fish populations with potential for recovery. Despite the stressors and uncertainties of climate change, scientists generally agree that the Eel River holds perhaps the West’s greatest promise for salmonid recovery.

Click here to download our one-pager.

Click here to learn about current programs.

Stronger Together

At Friends of the Eel River we are working to protect and recover the Wild and Scenic Eel River, its fisheries, and communities. To achieve this objective, we must approach our work with systemic equity. Because diversity is a core value for our organization, we strive to make our work inclusive by addressing the roots of white supremacy culture. This involves promoting diverse perspectives, fostering an inclusive environment among our leadership team, and increasing equity in activism by improving access to resources and information.

Click here to learn more about our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Some of our staff and allies after a great day defending the Eel River at the California Supreme Court
Some of our staff and allies after a great day defending the Eel River at the California Supreme Court


Kanan Beissert

Administrative Manager, kanan@eelriver.org
Kanan Beissert was born and raised in Los Angeles county, where a continuous drought taught him the importance of preserving our planet’s most precious resource: water. Attending Environmental Charter High School sparked his passion for the natural world, and in 2018 he moved to Arcata to attend Humboldt State University. He was part of the first graduating class of Cal Poly Humboldt, earning a degree in Environmental Science & Management with an emphasis in Education & Interpretation in 2022. In his free time, Kanan loves to draw, take his dog hiking, and sprawl out on the shore of the Eel River.

Scott Greacen

Conservation Director, scott@eelriver.org
Scott Greacen joined Friends of the Eel River as our North Coast Director in 2010 and served as Executive Director from 2012 to 2017. He worked at EPIC (the Environmental Protection Information Center) from 2003 to 2010, ultimately serving as Executive Director. Scott is a member of the California bar and a cum laude graduate of Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, OR. His undergraduate degree is from Reed College, another Portland school with a disproportionate number of alumni active in environmental advocacy.

Alicia Hamann

Executive Director, alicia@eelriver.org
Alicia Hamann grew up in the Pacific Northwest. She was fortunate to spend her youth exploring the mountains, forests, and rivers of the greater Portland area. Alicia moved to California in 2006 and earned a BA in Anthropology with a minor in Business Administration from Humboldt State University. She was drawn to Humboldt County by the vast wilderness and unique communities. After serving as Administrative Director for Friends of the Eel River from 2013 – 2019, Alicia now serves as Executive Director. Alicia also has experience volunteering as a board member for several local organizations including SCRAP Humboldt, Big Brother Big Sisters of the North Coast, the Northcoast Environmental Center, and the Same Old People.