Reston, VA – This week, the National Wildlife Federation recognized the Tennessee Wildlife Federation for its vast accomplishments in the field of conservation, as well as its longstanding commitment to protecting the state’s wildlife and water resources.
“Tennessee Wildlife Federation is one of the most effective conservation organizations in our nation. Period. Tennessee is blessed with the greatest diversity of wildlife of any inland state in our great nation—and fortunately, Tennessee Wildlife Federation is leading the charge on restoring wildlife habitat, keeping wildlife and public lands public, and connecting all Tennesseans with wildlife,” said Collin O’Mara, National Wildlife Federation CEO. “We love working with the whole team to put points on the board for conservation and we could not be more proud of our 72-year partnership. We are honored to recognize Tennessee Wildlife Federation as our Federation’s 2018 Affiliate of the Year.”
The ceremony took place at the National Wildlife Federation’s annual meeting and 82nd anniversary celebration, held in Chantilly, Virginia. The National Conservation Affiliate of the Year Award honors an affiliate organization for its conservation accomplishments and contributions to collaborative efforts across the Federation.
“Being named Affiliate of the Year really speaks to the work of our Tennessee Wildlife Federation family. While the Federation and its supporters have been characterized by strength and passion since its founding in 1946, we have made significant strides in recent years to better affect change in Tennessee and nationally,” said Kendall McCarter, chief development officer of Tennessee Wildlife Federation. “We’re thrilled to see those efforts bear fruit and be acknowledged.”
Tennessee Wildlife Federation: National Conservation Affiliate of the Year Award
Tennessee Wildlife Federation was founded in the 1940s to support natural resource conservation in the state, spearheaded the formation of the Tennessee Game and Fish Commission. With this early victory, the Federation began its unwavering advocacy for the state’s wildlife and natural places. The organization has since impacted public policy affecting Tennessee’s great outdoors in both sweeping and nuanced ways—from science-based resource management to the 2012 adoption of an amendment to the Constitution of Tennessee enshrining citizens’ right to hunt and fish.
During the last 20 years, Tennessee Wildlife Federation has broadened its efforts to include stewardship and youth engagement programs, ensuring that the organization’s legacy can be enjoyed and sustained by future generations. These include its Tennessee Scholastic Clay Target Program and Youth Hunting & Fishing Program that introduce outdoor sports to kids and engage young conservationists. Tennessee Wildlife Federation created a Hunters for the Hungry program that provides donated venison to local food banks and soup kitchens and created a Habitat Conservation program that actively conserves and restores forests, fields, wetlands, rivers, and streams for generations to come.
As a leader at the state and federal level, Tennessee Wildlife Federation’s accomplishments are many and include helping return signature species such as the bald eagle, river otter, and elk to the Tennessee ecosystem; stopping the channelization of streams and rivers by the Army Corps of Engineers through a landmark legal case; engaging thousands of youth each year in the outdoors; conserving and restoring more than 13,000 acres of land; and working for the passage of state conservation bills on everything from wildlife funding to the protection of the state’s waterways and wildlife.
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More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. We're on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 53 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.