Legacy Giving

Let your values live on by joining our Legacy Giving Circle today. By including Columbia Riverkeeper in your will, you will leave a legacy of clean water and healthy communities for future generations.

Create a Lasting Impact

There are many ways you can leave a bequest, each requiring specific language to carry out your wishes. These examples include some of the most common types of bequests and basic language to help you get started. Your financial or legal advisor can help you review this language and incorporate it into your will. 

General Bequests are legacies designating a specific dollar amount, a particular asset or a fixed percentage of the general value of your estate to the person or cause of your choice. 

General bequest language:
"I give, devise, and bequeath to COLUMBIA RIVERKEEPER/HOOD RIVER, the sum of $________(or a description of the specific asset), for the benefit of COLUMBIA RIVERKEEPER/HOOD RIVER, OREGON and its general purposes."

Residuary Bequests are made when you intend to leave the balance or residue portion of your assets after other terms of the will have been satisfied.

Residuary bequest language:    
"All the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate, both real and personal, I give to COLUMBIA RIVERKEEPER/HOOD RIVER, for its general purposes."

Contingency Bequests allow you to leave a portion of your estate to a particular charity if your named beneficiary does not survive you.

Contingency bequest language:
"I devise and bequeath the residue of the property, real and personal and wherever situated, owned by me at my death, to (name of beneficiary), if (she/he) survives me. If (name of beneficiary) does not survive me, I devise and bequeath my residuary estate to COLUMBIA RIVERKEEPER/HOOD RIVER, for its general purposes."

Specific Bequests are made when a particular item or property is bequeathed for a designated purpose. (i.e., instruments bequeathed to the local school district for use in music education; dollar funds to be used in the operation of a school or church.)

Specific bequest language:
"I give, devise, and bequeath to COLUMBIA RIVERKEEPER/HOOD RIVER, the sum of $_______ (or a description of a specific asset), for the benefit of COLUMBIA RIVERKEEPER/HOOD RIVER to be used for the following purpose: (state the purpose). If at any time in the judgment of the trustees of COLUMBIA RIVERKEEPER/HOOD RIVER it is impossible or impracticable to carry out exactly the designated purpose, they shall determine an alternative purpose closest to the designated purpose."

In any charitable bequest, it is important to name the recipient accurately. While we work throughout the Columbia River basin, our registered address is in Hood River, Oregon. Please use: Columbia Riverkeeper, Hood River, Oregon. Federal Tax ID number #91-1583492.


Importance of Creating a Will

Without a will, there is no mechanism in place to make a bequest, here are some steps to make sure your wishes are granted.

  • Make a list of organizations or causes that you would like to support.
  • Make a detailed list of your assets (financial, real estate, vehicles, jewelry, collectibles, musical instruments, etc.)
  • Set up an appointment with your financial analyst or attorney, or planned giving officer at the organization you intend to support. These professionals can help sensitively guide you through the process.

Just getting started? We have partnered with FreeWill to provide you with this free will writing tool you can use to easily and quickly create a legal will and leave a legacy with Columbia Riverkeeper. 


If you would like more information or to discuss your estate plans, please contact Dianne Riley, Development Director at dianne@columbiarivkeeper.org, (541) 399-3260. 



Members of Columbia Riverkeeper’s Legacy Giving Circle are showing their commitment to the future of the Columbia River by leaving a legacy of clean water for future generations.

Have you already included Riverkeeper as a beneficiary of a life insurance policy or retirement fund, or included us in your will? Let us know so we can highlight your commitment to healthy rivers by including you in our Legacy Giving Circle.



Gayle Kiser

“I recognize how important the work being done by Columbia Riverkeeper is to the Northwest and to the future. While I am here, I will continue to send monetary support. I included Riverkeeper in my will because I consider the organization family and this is one way I can show my appreciation for all they do.” - Gayle Kiser

Nadene LeCheminant

“The first time I saw the Columbia River, its beauty took my breath away. I included Columbia Riverkeeper in my will because there is simply no other organization as effective at protecting the ecology, health and beauty of that magnificent river corridor.” - Nadene LeCheminant

In Memoriam:

Robert “Jake” Jacobs

The estate of Robert “Jake” Jacob donated $25,000. Jake, the builder and owner of the Cannery Pier Hotel in Astoria, OR, was a dreamer. He held a vision of a better world and he invested in that dream. He was a key figure in defeating LNG export projects near Astoria and Warrenton. Jake’s impact on the Columbia River did not end when he passed away last year. With Jake’s legacy gift, Riverkeeper will continue to work with communities threatened by fossil fuel development.

Barbara Mendius

The estate of Barbara Mendius gave Columbia Riverkeeper $82,000. Barbara was a passionate environmentalist and volunteer who supported many nonprofit organizations. She had given $50 or $100 per year for several years and surprised us with the large legacy gift. Riverkeeper is proud to carry on Barbara’s passion for clean water.

Kenneth Pawula

Kenneth Pawula left a legacy gift of $287,000. Kenneth was a Seattle-based artist and professor at University of Washington. He had one-man exhibitions in Seattle; New York; Minneapolis; Osaka, Japan; and Rio de Janiero, Brazil. His work is in the Seattle Art Museum, the Henry Art Gallery, and other collections. Kenneth left this gift to Columbia Riverkeeper possibly due to inspiration he drew from the Columbia Gorge.