Chattahoochee Riverkeeper Legacy Society celebra a nuestros dedicados y generosos seguidores que han hecho una donación planificada para garantizar un río Chattahoochee limpio y sostenible para siempre. Los miembros de Legacy Society tienen una conexión profunda y personal con nuestras aguas y son un ejemplo para los demás al recordar a Chattahoochee Riverkeeper en su testamento, fideicomiso u otra donación planificada. 

Ningún regalo tiene un impacto más duradero.

Cada donante de Legacy Society disfrutará de:

  • La satisfacción de hacer un regalo que garantizará la protección del río Chattahoochee para las generaciones futuras.
  • La oportunidad, si está de acuerdo, de que su don sea reconocido públicamente, para que su ejemplo inspire a otros.
  • La opción, si lo prefieres, de dar de forma anónima
  • Un prendedor de Legacy Society para mostrar su compromiso con Chattahoochee Riverkeeper
  • Una invitación para ser nuestro invitado en el evento anual Legacy Luncheon
  • Dos entradas para nuestra Fiesta Patronal anual
  • Una mirada de primera mano a nuestro trabajo para proteger el río Chattahoochee a bordo de nuestro bote patrullero con el Capitán y Riverkeeper Jason Ulseth

Para obtener más información sobre cómo invertir en el futuro de nuestra organización y misión, comuníquese con la oficial de donaciones planificadas de CRK, Becca Sue Klein, al [email protected].

Upcoming Events

Stay tuned for more information about our 2024 events, including our Annual Legacy Luncheon.

The Legacy Luncheon is a free event for all members of the Legacy Society.

siempre fluyendo

Charles Smith’s first recollection of the Chattahoochee River is from a very young age. In the late 1940s, his father, O.E., and grandfather, Papa Charlie (as he was fondly called by the kids), would take him fishing at Bush Head Shoals just north of Franklin, Georgia.

In those days, the shoals were fairly inaccessible because of the private ownership of land around them. Add the fact that most of the landowners were moonshiners and didn’t take to strangers coming around their property, and one would have to be pretty determined to get down to the water.

“I’ve always felt a strong connection to the water,” Charles said.

Continue reading Charles’ story

When he was 10 years old, Charles became a Boy Scout. He fondly recalls nights spent camping and fishing on the islands located in the shoals. It wasn’t unusual to catch 40 to 50 pounds of fish in a night in those days, which he and his troop would cook up for meals on their trips.

“After the building of Plant Yates in 1950, we started to notice the quality of the water had started to deteriorate,” said Charles. But that didn’t stop him from continuing to enjoy its waters. His love of the river was firmly established at that point and continued to grow as he raised his family to love and value their time on the water. Water is home for Charles: he and his wife Jeannie currently live on West Point Lake, and his two boys grew up there and still live along its banks.

During Charles’ college years and into the early days of his career, he lived in Atlanta but found himself spending many weekends trailering his boat to Lake Lanier and fishing behind Buford Dam. In the 1960s when he moved to LaGrange, he purchased a place on Lake Harding and kept it until West Point Lake was built.

“We built our home on the lake in 1974 when West Point Lake was being impounded,” Charles shared. “In fact, I think it was the first house built on the lake. We literally wore out a pickup truck looking for a place to build a house. There were no paved roads or subdivisions back then.”

Charles’ family were avid water skiers – his two sons skied competitively and performed in the Fourth of July ski shows at the lake. “We were always concerned with infections, and any small wound was slow to heal,” Charles shared when asked about how the water quality continued to decline from his childhood to when he was raising his family.

Charles continued, sharing a story about when he realized the how poor the water quality was: “On one occasion the boys were pulling a friend behind our boat, over the ski jump. He landed wrong and had a compound fracture of his ankle. The wound got infected, and he had to wear a machine that infused an antibiotic in his system for the next twelve months.”

Charles can’t say exactly when he first heard about Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, but he and his family were well aware of the danger of losing such an important resource if the pollution continued to worsen. Luckily, CRK was doing important work in Atlanta that would end up drastically improving water quality in LaGrange.

Charles remembers his first contribution to CRK and the thank-you note he received from Sally Bethea, CRK’s Founding Riverkeeper and Executive Director. He and Sally met while they were both serving on the board of LaGrange College.

“Interestingly, Sally asked my son Edward if I would serve on CRK’s Board of Directors,” said Charles. “Edward wisely replied that she needed to ask me, but he thought I would be interested. It was a pleasure and honor to serve on the Board.  While serving, I quickly realized how professionally CRK was managed, how they were excellent stewards of their donors’ resources, and how they always put their mission to save the Chattahoochee River first.”

“I was especially proud when, because of medical reasons, I was unable to serve and my daughter-in-law, Laura, joined the board. My wife says we are ‘two peas in a pod’ when it comes to the river,” Charles chuckled.

“I am a great admirer of Saint Francis of Assisi, and share many of his thoughts of creation,” Charles continued. “While the Chattahoochee River has been my focus, I value all creation and humans are but one small part of the universe. We have a responsibility to protect the environment and all creation now and in the future.”

When asked what made him want to join the Legacy Society (and later the Founder’s Circle), Charles was quick to respond. “I had already talked to my family about a legacy gift before Becca approached me, so it was an easy decision. It is important to me and my family that we leave this world a better place.”

Elizabeth’s Story

Elizabeth Meloy’s love of the great outdoors is due in large part to her father, an avid outdoorsman, who first introduced her to the mountains and the tributaries that ran through her home state of California.   

“Dad used to take me backpacking when I was really young,” Elizabeth shares. “But fishing was always present. In fact, he taught me how to fish. It was bonding time that I will always remember.”

Many years and many fishing trips later, Elizabeth moved to Atlanta to take a regional position with Chick-fil-A.  A year earlier she had been diagnosed with invasive breast cancer and had undergone chemotherapy treatment. The toll her diagnosis had taken on her both physically and mentally left her craving a deeper connection to the outdoors. 

One afternoon when out exploring her new home, she found the Paces Mill park unit of the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area – her first interaction with the Chattahoochee River. That day, Department of Natural Resources biologist Sarah Baker was out with her team doing work on the river. Elizabeth approached the team of scientists and started learning more about the beautiful waterway in front of her. 

“After that visit to the river, I found myself at the Orvis Atlanta store buying flies for fishing my new home waters,” she said. “It was there that my introduction to CRK was reaffirmed through the Quality Hooch campaign that was marketed throughout the retail store. But my connection to the Chattahoochee didn’t really deepen until I started meeting people in the fly fishing and environmental communities.” 

In late 2020, Elizabeth was introduced to Becca Klein, a longtime staff member of CRK. “Becca had been teaching the women’s’ fly fishing education courses with Orvis and had a passion about her for the Chattahoochee River and the work that Chattahoochee Riverkeeper was doing to protect it,” she said. “We started spending more time together on the river with a fly rod in hand and I started to learn more about why CRK’s work was so essential to the health of our waterways.” 

Elizabeth shares how shocked she was at the amount of trash she was seeing at her feet every time she stepped into the river, and credits CRK’s Trash-Free Chattahoochee program as the stepping stone to her involvement with the organization. She knew she wanted to give back and to learn more. Elizabeth was given that chance when she was invited to be a river guide for the annual Becca Sue Klein All Kids Fish event that fall.  

Impressed with CRK’s efforts to engage marginalized youth in a sport not traditionally accessible to the economically disadvantaged, Elizabeth wanted to make sure this opportunity to not only learn about fly fishing, but how to be a good steward of our natural resources would be offered to all children in decades to come. Elizabeth soon became a member of CRK’s Legacy Society, and one of the first members of the Founders Circle.  

“Everyone relies on water,” says Elizabeth. “We are all connected, and there is a need to protect our natural resources on every level. For the Chattahoochee River, CRK is the nonprofit to accomplish this very important task.” 

Bonnie’s Story

Con un corazón cálido y un espíritu fuerte, Bonnie Jackson fue una guerrera por hacer el bien y ayudar a los demás. Incluso en su último año, mientras luchaba contra el cáncer con firme determinación, Bonnie nunca dejó de dar y proveer para las personas que luchaban y para los lugares especiales que necesitaban ayuda: animales, amigos, familia, ríos, montañas y la costa. Durante casi cuarenta años, Bonnie se dedicó a cuidar el entorno natural de Georgia, mientras usaba sus diversos talentos para fortalecer organizaciones sin fines de lucro, incluida Chattahoochee Riverkeeper.

Bonnie podía hacer cualquier cosa, desde organizar y atender viajes de aventuras al aire libre hasta contabilidad financiera, administrar sistemas de tecnología de la información, coordinar voluntarios y reparar casi cualquier cosa que se rompiera. Se destacó en todo lo que logró, sin importar el tamaño de la tarea. Profundamente leal a sus amigos y colegas, Bonnie siempre estuvo dispuesta a desempeñarse más allá del llamado del deber. En un evento conmemorativo en 2021, sus cenizas se esparcieron en las aguas claras y fluidas del río Chattahoochee: la vía fluvial que se benefició de sus incansables esfuerzos.  

Bonnie entendió el valor y la importancia de las donaciones planificadas para las organizaciones sin fines de lucro. Estaba decidida a proporcionar un regalo heredado a Chattahoochee Riverkeeper que garantizaría la continuidad de nuestro trabajo en el futuro, más allá de su vida; también esperaba inspirar a otros a hacer contribuciones similares. El esposo de Bonnie, Mike, mantiene vivo el legado y la memoria de Bonnie con una generosa promesa a Chattahoochee Riverkeeper por la cantidad de $100,000. En honor a todo lo que hizo por nuestra organización y por muchas otras, hemos establecido el Premio Bonnie Jackson al Voluntario del Año.

Círculo de Fundadores

En 1994, Laura y Rutherford Seydel fundaron Chattahoochee Riverkeeper preocupados por el flujo interminable de basura y contaminación para proteger el río que los sustentaba a ellos y a sus hijos. Los Seydel imaginaron un próspero grupo de protección del agua centrado en la comunidad que trabajaría para lograr un río Chattahoochee siempre limpio y sostenible, incluidos sus afluentes, lagos y cuencas.

Hoy en día, nuestro río es un salvavidas líquido para más de cinco millones de personas que proporciona agua potable, electricidad, riego, recreación y hábitat para innumerables peces y vida silvestre. Gracias al liderazgo colectivo, la dedicación y la generosidad de miles de miembros, Chattahoochee está experimentando un renacimiento y personas de todos los orígenes acuden en masa a sus aguas para disfrutar de su generosidad. CRK ha demostrado con éxito a través de nuestra educación, monitoreo del agua, políticas e iniciativas legales, que se puede lograr mucho progreso, pero el trabajo debe continuar. Debemos ser capaces de mantener el curso y asegurar el futuro del río.

Read More About the Founders Circle

A través del Círculo de Fundadores, Chattahoochee Riverkeeper reconoce, junto con Laura y Rutherford Seydel, a aquellos que han prometido un regalo de legado de $100,000 o más. Su generosidad lo conecta con los fundadores de CRK y juega un papel vital en la configuración del futuro de la organización.

Todos los donantes de Founder's Circle disfrutarán de los beneficios de los miembros de Legacy Society además de:

  • Una membresía de por vida para Chattahoochee Riverkeeper
  • Reconocimiento especial en el programa Legacy Luncheon
  • Cuatro entradas para nuestra Fiesta Patronal anual, con reconocimiento especial en la programa[JR1] [BK2] .

¿Interesado en hacer un regalo del Círculo de Fundadores? Comuníquese con la oficial de donaciones planificadas de CRK, Becca Sue Klein, al [email protected] o vía celular al 404.558.8676.

Algunas personas no entienden completamente el papel crítico que juega CRK en nuestro presente y futuro. Cuando Mary Jane y yo nos sentamos a contemplar nuestra planificación, sabíamos que queríamos comprometernos con Chattahoochee Riverkeeper.

– Dave Kirkpatrick

Donante, voluntario y miembro de la junta de CRK

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