About Us

Ron Marquart Photo Credit

Friends of the Clearwater, a recognized non-profit organization since 1987, defends the Idaho Clearwater Bioregion’s wildlands and biodiversity through a Forest Watch program, litigation, grassroots public involvement, outreach and education. The Wild Clearwater Country, the northern half of central Idaho’s Big Wild, contains many unprotected roadless areas and wild rivers, and provides crucial habitat for numerous rare plant and animal species. Friends of the Clearwater strives to protect these areas, restore degraded habitats, preserve viable populations of native species, recognize national and international wildlife corridors, and bring an end to industrialization on public lands.



Organization History

Who We Work With


Friends of the Clearwater founder and long-time Board of Director Steve Paulson recognized the need to honor men and women that have devoted decades of their lives fighting to protect our public wildlands, biodiversity and natural processes, particularly those of the Clearwater Basin and northern Rockies. As a result the Macfarlane Plank Award was created in 2006 to recognize and thank individuals that may not have, yet, received adequate recognition for their important work.

As a 501-(c)(3), our Board of Directors is responsible for making decisions that guide our organization today and into the future. All board members are elected by the membership at our Annual Meeting.



Gary Macfarlane, Ecosystem Defense Director

Gary Macfarlane, FOC File Photo

Gary is responsible for tracking public land issues in the Clearwater Basin. His duties include analyzing public land agency proposals and policy, submitting public comments, filing appeals of federal agency decisions, and when necessary coordinating litigation. Gary has over 30 years of activist experience and is very familiar with Forest Service policy. He has been recognized as one of the most effective activists in the northern Rockies, and was a recipient of the Alliance for the Wild Rockies Conservation Award in 1997. Gary holds a B.S. degree from Utah State University’s College of Natural Resources. Email Gary.

Brett Haverstick, Education & Outreach Director

Brett Haverstick, Education & Outreach Director

Brett is responsible for grassroots organizing, educational programming and media communications. His duties include spearheading community wildland events, publishing educational materials, hosting radio shows, writing news releases, handling social media, maintaining the website and working with students at the University of Idaho, Washington State University, and Lewis-Clark State College. Brett has a B.S. in Parks & Recreation Management from Northern Arizona University, and a Master’s degree in Natural Resources from the University of Idaho. Email Brett.


Ashley Lipscomb, Membership and Development Director

Ashley is responsible for growing Friends of the Clearwater’s membership base, and developing relationships with individual donors, and foundations. Ashley has two goals: broaden FOC’s membership, reflecting diverse demographics for organizational longevity, and searching for mutually beneficial funding sources promoting public lands protection. Ashley has a B.S. in Resource Recreation and Tourism from the University of Idaho. Please contact Ashley if you are interested in our Legacy Giving program, membership inquiries, or the best places to hike in wild Clearwater country. Email Ashley.








Clearwater Country, Roger Inghram Photo Credit

We would like to extend our gratitude to those individuals that have given us permission to use their photography for this website: Chuck Pezeshki, Peter Roise, Terry Gray, Roger Inghram, Fred Rabe, Gerry Snyder, Antone Holmquist, Ron Marquart and others.



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