Honorary Board Member
A former Riverkeeper, Rick spends much of his time training new Waterkeeper programs. He also works alongside Jillian Gladstone on the Alliance’s Pure Farms, Pure Waters campaign. Before serving as the southeastern representative for Waterkeeper Alliance, Rick enjoyed a varied career that began with two tours in Vietnam with the United States Marine Corps, for which he later served as a military courts-martial judge, Congressional Liaison and Provost-Marshal. After retiring from the military, Rick commercially fished the Neuse River and owned and operated a wholesale fish store until 1991. He then practiced civilian law until becoming the Neuse Riverkeeper in 1993, a post he held until the year 2000.
As the river’s spokesperson, Rick has been in more than 4000 news stories in both major and local media, and his work was detailed in a chapter of the 1997 Simon and Schuster book, And the Waters Turned to Blood. From 1996-1998, Rick was the Governor’s appointee to the Neuse River Basin Advisory Council, during which time he was asked to testify before the U.S. Congress Committee on Resources, Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife and Oceans Subcommittee on the microorganism Pfiesteria Piscidia and its effects on the river. In 1999, Rick was named one of “100 People Who Have Shaped the North Carolina in the past Century” by the Raleigh News and Observer, and in 2000 he received the Environmental Protection Agency’s IV Merit Award. In 2001, Rick received an Appreciation Award from the Alliance for a Responsible Swine Industry, and later that year he was given the Nancy Susan Reynolds Award for Advocacy. In 2002 he again testified for the government as an invited witness before the U.S. Senate Committee, Government Affairs about pollution from industrial animal factories. Rick graduated from the Baltimore School of Law in 1962, and from the National War College in 1980.