Bend, Ore. - The Conservation Alliance announced a major new initiative to secure permanence for the organization and to grow its annual grant budget. Launch of the initiative took place today at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market in Salt Lake City.
four founding members of the Alliance - The North Face, Patagonia, REI
and Kelty - have come together around an effort to build a $3.5-million
endowment to cover the annual operating expenses of the organization,
significantly increasing its annual budget to fund the conservation
projects. The founder commitments are joined by additional pledges from
CamelBak, Merrell, KEEN, Inc., The Forest Group, and a personal
donation from former board president, Menno Van Wyk. The heads of each
of the founding members - Steve Rendle (The North Face), Sally Jewell
(REI), Casey Sheahan (Patagonia, Inc.) and Kenny Ballard (Kelty) -
participated in the announcement.
"The Conservation Alliance
faces two main challenges - to increase our annual budget and to secure
a reliable source of funding for our operational expenses," said John
Sterling, Conservation Alliance executive director. "This initiative
will accomplish both." As a rule, the Alliance places 100 percent of
each member's dues into its grant budget, so the organization must
raise operational funds separate from dues.
The endowment - The
Conservation Alliance Legacy Fund - is underway with a $1-million
commitment from The North Face, a $250,000 commitment from REI, a
$500,000 commitment from Merrell, a $10,000 commitment from CamelBak,
and a $100,000 contribution from Montrail founder Menno van Wyk. The
alliance will build on these early commitments by seeking additional
contributions from member companies.
Because 100 percent of
membership dues go into the Alliance's grant fund, the organization
must look elsewhere to cover operational expenses. These expenses are
currently supported by additional contributions from member companies,
foundation grants and fundraising events.
Once fully funded, the Legacy Fund will permanently cover the current operating expenses for the Alliance.
Legacy Fund will ensure that The Conservation Alliance outlives us
all," said Sterling. "As long as there is an outdoor industry, we will
be here ensuring that the industry is active in the effort to protect
wild places for their habitat and recreational values."
addition to helping build the Legacy Fund, Patagonia, Inc. has
committed to increasing their membership dues to $100,000 annually. As
with all dues, the Alliance will direct these funds into its grant
budget, and use Patagonia's commitment to launch a review of the
organization's dues structure.
"Our membership dues have not
changed since 1989," said Sterling. "With Patagonia's commitment, we
have the opportunity to update our dues structure in a way that
challenges our larger members to make a greater annual contribution to
our grant fund."
A full review of the dues structure will be
part of the Alliance's 2008 strategic planning process. The Legacy Fund
Campaign and the revised dues structure are slated to conclude in
August, 2009, the Alliance's 20th anniversary.
"I can think of
no better way to celebrate our 20th anniversary than to secure
permanent funding for our operational expenses, and to implement a new
dues structure that will enable us to fund a greater number of
conservation projects," concluded Sterling.
For complete information about The Conservation Alliance Legacy Fund, visit www.conservationalliance.com/legacy.
About The Conservation Alliance
Conservation Alliance is an organization of outdoor businesses whose
collective contributions support grassroots environmental organizations
and their efforts to protect wild places where outdoor enthusiasts
recreate. The Alliance funds have played a key role in protecting
rivers, trails, wildlands and climbing areas.
Membership in the
Alliance is open to companies representing all aspects of the outdoor
industry, including manufacturers, retailers, publishers, mills and
sales representatives. The result is a diverse group of businesses
whole livelihood depends on protecting our natural environment.
its inception in 1989, the Alliance has contributed more than $5
million to grassroots environmental groups. Alliance funding has helped
save over 38-million acres of wildland; stopped or removed 26 dams; and
preserved access to more than 16,000 miles of waterways and several
For complete information on the Conservation Alliance, visit www.conservationalliance.com.
Contacts: John Sterling
Conservation Alliances Announces Major New Initiative at Winter OR '08Thursday, 24 January 2008
The Conservation Alliance announced a major new initiative to secure permanence for the organization and to grow its annual grant budget. Launch of the initiative took place today at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market in Salt Lake City.
David Johnston has been introducing people to the sport of sea kayaking for the past 15 years. He is a senior instructor trainer with Paddle Canada and teaches for several paddling schools in Ontario, Canada. Full Bio.