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.

Max collecting water samples at Rocketts Landing in Richmond

Meet volunteer water quality monitor Max Shipman. Max has been trained as one of over 90 citizen scientists who weekly monitor highly used public access points along the James River as part of James River Watch. He monitors at three sites in the Richmond area: Rocketts Landing, 14th Street, and Tredegar. He has also volunteered at our monthly invasive species removal and habitat restoration efforts on Chapel Island in the James River Park System.

Originally from Leesburg, VA, Max now lives in Richmond and works as an analyst for the Virginia Economic Development Partnership. The James River is a constant presence in his life because he enjoys fishing and swimming. Max feels that the best part about volunteering with the James River Association is helping to protect and improve the river all while educating the public. Best of all, he feels like he is giving back to a natural resource that influences a large portion of the Virginia population, especially the Richmond community. He would encourage others to get involved so that they can learn more about the James River.

Thanks for all you do, Max! Interested in volunteering? Check out our events calendar for upcoming opportunities or e-mail volunteer@jrava.org.