Riverkeeper is a nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping the Hudson River clean, and prosecuting those who refuse to comply with Federal regulations. Since 1983, Riverkeeper has had a full-time investigator to patrol the waters and look for anything amiss. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. joined the organization in 1984 and, along with Karl Coplan, codirects the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic, a program through which 10 law-school students, acting as legal representatives for Riverkeeper, prosecute Hudson River polluters. As of 2003, they've won 300 cases. The efforts of Riverkeeper have turned the river from a chemically infused, "dead" body of water into the major estuary it was prior to industrialization. To celebrate this rebirth of the Hudson, Riverkeeper holds an annual benefit called the Shad Festival that also marks the late spring run of the shad fish. All proceeds benefit the Riverkeeper organization.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and John Hannan