The Pacific Salmon Commission is pleased to announce Dr. Gary Morishima as the recipient of the 2023 Larry Rutter Memorial Award for Pacific Salmon Conservation.
Gary has worked tirelessly for decades to help ensure a sustainable and resilient salmon resource for the people of the U.S. and Canada. His distinguished career has been dedicated to improving West Coast salmon management, and ensuring sustainable fish and fisheries that include significant tribal interests.
He was active in the initial Pacific Salmon Treaty negotiations and has remained devoted to its successful implementation ever since. In recent years, Gary has been a leader in bringing attention to the negative impacts of climate change on Pacific Northwest salmon populations.
Throughout his career Dr. Morishima has made many contributions to resolving U.S./Canadian issues in salmon management, particularly through technical solutions. He was part of the original bilateral working group that drafted the coastwide management regime for Chinook and Southern Coho salmon. He also helped to develop the Coded Wire Tag program and associated computer models that utilize these data to support management decisions.
Gary’s technical leadership has earned him the confidence of both parties, and he has served as a reliable expert during repeated renegotiations of the Chinook and Coho chapters of the PST since 1985. Just as important, Gary has worked to transfer his knowledge to the next generation of technical committee members.
For these and many other reasons, the selection committee chose Gary as this year’s recipient of the Larry Rutter Memorial Award. He received the award during the Commission’s 38th annual meeting at a ceremony held on February 15th.
About the award
Larry Rutter was a fixture in Pacific salmon conservation and management for more than three decades until his untimely death in 2014. He was a leading influence in how the Tribes, the United States, and Canada approached salmon management and research during the turn of the 21st century. The Commission established the award to help memorialize Larry’s lifetime of work including his legacy in the PSC, the Pacific Northwest Tribes, the Southern Fund Committee, and beyond.
Since 2016, the recipients (in order) preceding Bill have been: Lorraine Loomis, Don Hall, Brian Riddell, Phil Anderson, Jim Scott, Sue Farlinger, Bill Auger, and Gary Morishima.