River conservation is my passion. Over the years I have worked to align my education, career and volunteer paths towards water resource management and protection. I enjoy meeting and working with those who share the same desire to protect our rivers and strive to educate and empower others to do the same.
When my family moved out to the North Saluda River several years ago, I never imagined I would be presiding over a watershed group whose mission is to restore and protect it. I am committed to raising awareness of the value of local streams and rivers, the threats they face, and the need for sustainable land management for long-term watershed protection.
The Saluda River and its tributaries provide water to Upstate communities, business, and industry in one of the most rapidly growing areas of the country. Our rivers and lakes offer a variety of recreational opportunities and support a diversity of aquatic life, including trout in headwater areas. For these and many other reasons, the Saluda is worth saving.
I hope you will join us in supporting the goal of restoring and maintaining the quality, health, and integrity of our waters to ensure they are fishable and swimmable with sustainable flows for future generations.
Melanie Ruhlman is a water resources specialist with over 20 years of professional experience in watershed planning and management, working for industry, government, private, and nonprofit organizations. Melanie earned a bachelor’s degree in Forestry from North Carolina State University and master’s degree in Forest Hydrology from the University of Georgia. Her areas of expertise include watershed assessment and planning, watershed hydrology, water quality, erosion and sediment control, stormwater management, stream assessment, soils, wetlands, and public outreach and education. She lives on the North Saluda River in Marietta, South Carolina with her husband and two children and enjoys paddling, biking, hiking, and gardening.