Tim Palmer is the award-winning author of 22 books on rivers, conservation, and the environment. He is also an accomplished photographer with one of the most complete collection of photos of rivers in the United States.
For over 30 years, Tim's writing and photography work have braided together his love of rivers and nature with his drive for creative expression and his deep commitment to conservation.
After receiving a bachelor of science degree in landscape architecture from The Pennsylvania State University, Tim worked for eight years as a land-use planner on land use and environmental topics from 1971-1980. He started to write full-time in 1980.
Throughout his career, Tim has also been involved in river conservation. He is author of dozens of magazine articles and river studies, display packages, and brochures for conservation campaigns, including publications for the successful effort to designate the Kings River in the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System and to protect the South Yuba River in the California State Scenic Rivers System. Most recently, he authored the Western Rivers Conservancy's "Great Rivers of the West" report, a survey of the natural qualities of rivers in eleven Western states.
A primary focus of Tim's work is public speaking. He has been featured at hundreds of national, statewide, and provincial conferences, conservation gatherings, and at colleges and universities nationwide.
Tim is currently an Associate at the Pennsylvania State University's Riparia Center and a Visiting Scholar at Portland State University.
An inveterate river-lover, Tim has canoed or rafted on more than 300 rivers in the United States and western Canada. He lived for 22 years as a nomad in his van, traveling throughout the country to do research, writing, and photography for his book projects.
Tim is married to Ann Vileisis, author of Discovering the Unknown Landscape: A History of America's Wetlands and Kitchen Literacy: How We Lost Knowledge of Where Food Comes From and Why We Need to Get it Back. They lived for 11 years together in their van and now live some of the time in a home on the Pacific coast.
Tim's book The Heart of America: Our Landscape, our Future was awarded the best book of the year in the essay and travel category by the Independent Publishers Association.
California Wild, with text and color photos by Tim, was the winner of the Benjamin Franklin Award as the best American book on nature and the environment in 2005.
The Columbia won the National Outdoor Book Award in 1998.
Yosemite: The Promise of Wildness received the Director's Award from the National Park Service for the outstanding publication about a national park in 1996.
Pacific High was a finalist for the Benjamin Franklin Book Award in 2002.
In 2011, he received the National Conservation Achievement Award ("Connie") for communications by the National Wildlife Federation.
For his conservation and creative river work, Tim was the first recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from American Rivers in 1988.
He was granted the River Conservationist of the Year Award by Perception, Inc. in 2000.
In 2002, he was given the Peter Behr Award from Friends of the River.
In 2010, he was given the Marc Dubois Award from Friends of the River.
Tim was named one of the nation's "ten greatest river conservationists" and one of the "100 paddlers of the century" by Paddler magazine.
In 2005 he received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Arts and Architecture at the Pennsylvania State University.
Tim has been also been a Finalist for the Galen Rowell Award for Art, Adventure, and Conservation.