Background/Question/Methods Urban, low-income and communities of color are often not engaged in urban ecosystems research relating to water quality and aquatic biodiversity even when that research is conducted in their own communities. Conversely, government agencies don’t often think of residents of said communities as assets to their research teams. Through initiatives like the Urban Waters Federal Partnership, however, this is changing. This presentation will describe a collaborative effort led by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; an urban, community-based, environmental justice organization, the West Atlanta Watershed Alliance; and local colleges and universities, in partnership with residents of Atlanta, Georgia’s Proctor Creek Watershed (one of 19 Federal Urban Waters Partnership locations and a focal point for watershed restoration and redevelopment efforts on Atlanta’s Westside). Through a community-engaged citizen science approach, a multi-stakeholder team of federal wildlife and fisheries biologists, college students, conservation interns, and Proctor Creek Watershed residents conducted an aquatic biodiversity inventory, water quality monitoring, and visual stream surveys in Proctor Creek, an urban stream impacted by sewer overflows, various types of non-point source pollution, illegal dumping, erosion, sedimentation, and other water quality stressors. Results/Conclusions While results of this collaborative research revealed significantly more biodiversity than anticipated in the creek, the primary lessons learned relate to the utility of such collaborative efforts to advance equity in urban ecosystems research and to support community stewardship of water, wildlife, and other natural resources in environmental justice communities. This presentation will also examine the process of forging authentic relationships; elevate the importance of pairing local community knowledge with traditional research methodologies; demonstrate that such partnerships can mutually benefit communities, government agencies, and academic institutions; and argue that community-engaged research should become the norm for place-based, urban ecosystems research.