GSSA is California’s leading voice for salmon protection and restoration, particularly in the Bay-Delta ecosystem, which produces most of the salmon caught in the state.  Our board represents the entire California salmon community, including commercial and recreational fishermen, charter boat skippers, inland river guides, restaurants, fishing manufacturers and retailers, tribal members and more.

John McManus – President

Current GSSA president. McManus is a former media director for Earthjustice, a national environmental non-profit, a lifelong conservationist, former commercial and current recreational fisherman, and a former 15 year news executive with CNN.

Cat Kaiser – Events Manager

Cat Kaiser, the events manager at Golden State Salmon Association joined the team in February of 2018. Cat came to GSSA after years of traveling, and a long career in the wine and hospitality industry.  Her time is spent working on GSSA’s fundraising dinners, administrative and legislative projects, and assisting the GSSA President and board of directors with all things salmon.  In her free time Cat can be found on the ocean fishing for salmon, tuna, and anything else that swims, or on a mountainous river in a drift boat with her golden doodle, Scarlet and a fly rod chasing steelhead, rainbow and brown trout. 

Michael Coats – PR Consultant

Michael Coats – Current GSSA public relations consultant. Coats has extensive experience in local, regional and national public relations campaigns. He’s a co-founder of SF PR firm Glodow, Coats and Need. He worked extensively with rock promoter Bruce Cohn and has with many of the big name wineries in the Sonoma and Napa valleys.

Barry Nelson – Policy Advisor

Barry Nelson – Current GSSA policy consultant. Nelson is the former executive director of Save the Bay, a former senior policy analyst for California water issues at the Natural Resourced Defense Council (NRDC), a current water conservation consultant, and a popular blogger on complex environmental issues.

Dennis Whitaker – Marketing Director

Board of Directors

Mike Aughney

Vice Chair and Executive Committee member

Creator of USAfishing.com website, former commercial fisherman.

Sarah Bates

Commercial salmon troller

Robert Boucke

Owner Johnson’s Bait, Yuba City, Fish and Game Advisory Commissioner, District 3 Sutter County.

Joe Donatini

Owner Johnson Hicks Marine Electronics, Santa Cruz, and Sausalito.

Chris Lawson

Commercial salmon and crab fisherman with roots that go back generations in the Tomales Bay and Bodega Bay area.

Don Newman

National Sales Manager for P-Line, a leading fishing tackle company. Don is a lifelong fisherman and one of the best steelhead fishermen on the west coast.

Brian Layng

Owner International Sportsmen’s Expo

Dick Pool

Secretary and Executive Committee member

Owner Pro Troll tackle, veteran Central Valley salmon advocate and activist going back to the listing of winter run salmon in the late 1980’s.

Randy Repass

Chair and Executive Committee member

Founder West Marine

Vance Staplin

Vance Staplin is a former inland rivers fishing guide. He now represents multiple lines of fishing and outdoor gear and deals with outdoors folks throughout the state.

David Zeff

Treasurer and Executive Committee

Attorney and environmentalist.

John Atkinson

Captain of charter boat New RayAnne, CA Charter Boat representative to the Pacific Fisheries Management Council, member of Golden Gate Fishermens Association

Mike Bogue

One of the Sacramento River’s best fishing guides.

Hunt Conrad

A former commercial and current recreational angler and writer of a weekly fishing column.

Marc Gorelnik

Executive Committee member

Chairman Coastside Fishing Club, Half Moon Bay-based non-profit, member Pacific Fisheries Management Council, general counsel American Sportfishing Association.

Ben Harris

Executive director, Monterey Salmon and Trout Project

Adam Messner

Entrepreneur, outdoorsman.

Noah Oppenheim

Executive Committee member

Executive Director, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations.

Rick Powers

Captain, New Sea Angler, a charter boat out of Bodega Bay.

Caleen Sisk

Chief of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, along the McCloud River watershed.

Ted Wilson

Ted Wilson is a caterer and restaurant owner who specializes in sustainable seafood.