Non-profit

Watershed Institute

Website:

thewatershed.org/

Location:

Pennington, NJ

Tax ID:

21-0649717

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2020):

Revenue: $13,067,773
Expenses: $2,929,138
Assets: $30,357,343

Type:

Non-Profit

Founded:

1953

Budget (2021):

Revenue: $7,070,996
Expenditures: $4,080,016
Assets: $35,108,779 1

References

  1. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). The Watershed Institute Inc. 2021.

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The Watershed Institute is nonprofit organization that manages a 950-acre watershed reserve in central New Jersey. 1 It also advocates for environmentalist policies related to water conservation and banning conventional energy sources. 2

In 2020, following the Black Lives Matter protests due to the death of George Floyd, the Watershed Institute created a Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Council to incorporate identity politics in its activities and advocacy. 3

Background

The Watershed Institute is nonprofit organization based in central New Jersey. It operates a 950-acre watershed reserve, which is maintained by volunteers whom it also trains to advocate for environmentalist policies. 4 5

The Watershed Institute states that in 2017 it began diversity initiatives that eventually led to its Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) council, which dictates its policy advocacy. According to its 2017 to 2023 JEDI Report, the Watershed Institute states that the objective of the JEDI Council is to influence environmentalist policies to recognize “some communities in our region are particularly vulnerable to environmental threats due to systemic racism.” 6

The Watershed Institute offers “River-Friendly Certification Programs” to New Jersey residents, public, and private organizations to advise them on how to practice water and environmental conservation. The programs advise to minimize “unnecessary” water usage, avoid allowing so-called pollutants to enter stormwater drains, advocate for conservation, and “enhance property features” to support wildlife. 7

Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Council

Under the direction of its Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Council, the Watershed Institute began giving diversity training to staff and partners in 2019. 8

In 2020, The Watershed Institute formally recognized its JEDI Council in response to the police-custody death of George Floyd and released a “values statement” defining its JEDI initiative. The JEDI Council’s “value statement” states that it promotes the idea that people of all backgrounds should receive “effective protection from environmental and health hazards, access to green spaces, and equal access to the decision-making processes for creating healthy environments in which to live, learn, and work.” 9

In 2021, the Watershed Institute’s board of directors formed a DEIJ Task Force that worked with the JEDI Council to create “concentrated efforts” to hire ethnic minorities and work in ethnic minority communities. 10

From 2021 to 2022, the JEDI Council’s Youth Environmental Leadership Programs taught students from Trenton and Hightstown how to engage local policymakers and advocate on behalf of environmentalist issues. 11

Advocacy

The Watershed Institute engages advocacy before municipalities, New Jersey state legislators and agencies to advocate for environmentalist policies. 12 Its advocacy is, as it states, grounded in the belief that climate change is being influenced by humans. Consequently, it advocates for funding the construction of new or reconstructing existing floodplains and stormwater management systems and funding a transition to reliance on environmentalist energy. 13

Additionally, the Watershed Institute advocates for ending new construction projects of natural gas pipelines. It argues the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection should deny all water quality certifications of natural gas pipeline projects to circumvent the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s eminent domain authority to create new pipelines. 14

Leadership

Jim Waltman has served as the Watershed Institute’s executive director since 2005. Previously, Waltman served as director of the refuges and wildlife program for the Wilderness Society for 10 years, engaging members of congress, federal agencies, and the media to represent the organization’s environmentalist campaigns. He is also a member of the New Jersey’s Agriculture Development Committee, which oversees the state’s farmland preservation program. 15

Financials

According to its tax returns, the Watershed Institute reported $7.0 million in total revenue, including $584,000 in investment income in 2021. 16 It also reported spending $1.0 million in grants and $2.1 million in salaries and employee compensation out of its $4.0 million in total expenses for the year. 17

References

  1. “About Us.” thewatershed.org, June 22, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/about/.
  2. “Responding to Climate Change.” thewatershed.org, July 8, 2019. https://thewatershed.org/climate-change/.
  3. “2017-2023 JEDI Report.” Thewatershed.org, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Watershed_JEDI_report_2023_web.pdf
  4. “About Us.” thewatershed.org, June 22, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/about/.
  5. “Volunteer.” thewatershed.org, June 1, 2021. https://thewatershed.org/volunteer/.
  6. “2017-2023 JEDI Report.” Thewatershed.org, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Watershed_JEDI_report_2023_web.pdf
  7. “River-Friendly Certification Programs.” Thewatershed.org, Accessed August 13, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/river-friendly/.
  8. “2017-2023 JEDI Report.” Thewatershed.org, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Watershed_JEDI_report_2023_web.pdf.
  9. “2017-2023 JEDI Report.” Thewatershed.org, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Watershed_JEDI_report_2023_web.pdf
  10. “2017-2023 JEDI Report.” Thewatershed.org, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Watershed_JEDI_report_2023_web.pdf
  11. “2017-2023 JEDI Report.” Thewatershed.org, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Watershed_JEDI_report_2023_web.pdf.
  12. “Safeguarding Our Communities.” thewatershed.org, August 22, 2019. https://thewatershed.org/safeguarding-our-communities/.
  13. “Responding to Climate Change.” thewatershed.org, July 8, 2019. https://thewatershed.org/climate-change/.
  14. “Opposing Damaging Pipelines.” thewatershed.org, December 12, 2019. https://thewatershed.org/pipelines/.
  15. “Watershed Staff.” thewatershed.org, July 27, 2023. https://thewatershed.org/staff/.
  16. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). The Watershed Institute Inc. 2021. Part I, Lines 10-12.
  17. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). The Watershed Institute Inc. 2021. Part I, Lines 13-18.
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: May 1, 1953

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2020 Dec Form 990 $13,067,773 $2,929,138 $30,357,343 $109,434 N $12,794,020 $70,566 $94,873 $164,266
    2019 Dec Form 990 $2,885,206 $3,279,177 $19,273,985 $169,398 N $2,115,992 $407,079 $117,019 $163,790 PDF
    2018 Dec Form 990 $3,080,909 $2,727,632 $18,658,193 $150,850 N $2,332,926 $292,350 $205,693 $134,690 PDF
    2017 Dec Form 990 $3,264,634 $2,523,499 $18,833,810 $174,146 N $2,693,978 $261,922 $72,032 $144,923 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $5,160,153 $2,183,497 $18,106,256 $167,552 N $4,682,018 $252,129 $29,922 $142,938 PDF
    2015 Dec Form 990 $2,176,472 $2,082,176 $14,916,244 $107,233 N $1,780,472 $199,192 $31,470 $127,734 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $2,203,676 $1,847,732 $16,166,723 $1,395,211 N $1,801,866 $140,439 $91,326 $125,695 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $2,661,907 $1,625,161 $14,518,968 $147,125 N $2,270,424 $154,348 $70,665 $125,445 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $2,904,285 $1,613,148 $13,204,649 $56,460 N $2,561,282 $159,168 $43,784 $117,187 PDF
    2011 Dec Form 990 $3,536,131 $1,551,200 $11,759,898 $41,493 N $3,177,304 $165,375 $42,697 $115,617 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Watershed Institute


    Pennington, NJ