Volunteers play a huge role in helping the James River Association achieve its mission. Much of our work would not be possible without the knowledge and dedication of our volunteers. Whether it is a trash cleanup, water quality testing, invasive species management, restoration plantings or help with office tasks, volunteers give us a direct connection to the diverse communities we work with throughout the watershed.

Frank helped plant native tree seedlings in Nelson County as part of our buffer restoration efforts.

Meet Frank Ford, volunteer RiverRat from Madison Heights, VA. Frank completed RiverRat training in 2017 and has been a dedicated and reliable volunteer ever since! He was drawn to volunteer with the James River Association because he recognized the importance of our mission- to protect the James and connect people to it! Frank has helped with our guided paddle trips in Lynchburg launching from James River Adventures, installed informational kiosks at Riveredge Park, planted trees with us during our spring Tree-Athlon, and has been an indispensable asset of local knowledge in the upper reaches of the watershed.

Frank grew up in Monroe, VA and has enjoyed spending time on the river since he was a teenager. He has seen how much the health of the James has improved over the last 40 years and enjoys donating his time to further river restoration efforts. When not volunteering, Frank works for the Defense Contract Management Agency. He is an army veteran and has been a Red Cross platelet donor for 25 years. You can often find him paddling, fishing, hiking, and reading.

Frank would encourage others to volunteer because he feels that the issues our organization works on are effective in making our world a better place to live for everyone and can change attitudes about the stewardship of our environment. Thank you for all that you do, Frank!

Visit our Volunteer Page to find out how you can get involved!