The Conservation Alliance to Grow Advocacy Program

February 6, 2017

Support from Patagonia and The North Face will enable new hire, more grants

Bend, Ore., February 6, 2017 – In response to new threats to our public lands, The Conservation Alliance will add staff to focus on educating member companies and their employees on public lands issues, and engaging those companies to be strong advocates for conservation and recreation on lands managed by the federal government. The organization will also make grants to nonprofit organizations for efforts to preserve the integrity of our public lands system.

Patagonia and The North Face, two founding members of The Conservation Alliance, have each committed to contribute an additional $100,000 annually over the next four years to support the new staff position, and to seed the Public Lands Defense Fund. Some members of Congress have proposed changes to our public lands system that would threaten to rescind conservation protections secured during the Obama Administration, privatize public lands, and diminish the conservation laws that manage our public lands.

“The Conservation Alliance board held a strategic planning retreat the week after the November elections, and unanimously decided that we need to do more to engage our member companies in advocacy that supports our public lands,” said John Sterling, Executive Director of The Conservation Alliance. “Patagonia and The North Face responded quickly to provide the support we need to make that happen.”

“We care deeply about our public lands and naturally wanted to support The Conservation Alliance in effectively growing its advocacy program,” said Ann Krcik, Senior Director, Outdoor Exploration and Communications at The North Face, and a Conservation Alliance board member. “We co-founded the organization 28 years ago, and have seen the tremendous impacts since that time, we felt it imperative to help The Conservation Alliance make this important new step.”

In addition to the added staff, The Conservation Alliance will establish its Public Lands Defense Fund to make grants to organizations working to defend public lands from specific threats.  Between them, Patagonia and The North Face will contribute $100,000 annually to the fund, and urge other members to add to it.

“It’s time for the outdoor industry to raise its voice to preserve the lands that are so important to us,” said Lisa Pike Sheehy, VP of Environmental Activism at Patagonia. “The Conservation Alliance has a great track record of funding the most effective conservation organizations in North America, and supplementing those grants with focused advocacy. We’re committed to help the Alliance expand on both fronts.”

Today, The Conservation Alliance launched a search for the new Advocacy Program Manager. That person will develop and implement a plan to engage member companies and their employees to participate in advocacy efforts that celebrate and defend of our public lands. Applications are due Friday, February 24. (For more information about the position, go to http://www.conservationalliance.com/who-we-are/job-opportunities/.)

“For nearly three decades, our members have funded efforts to protect specific public lands,” said Sterling. “Now it is time to protect our investment.”

About the Conservation Alliance:

The 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. 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 whose livelihood depends on protecting our natural environment. 

Since 1989, The Conservation Alliance has contributed more than $17 million in grants that have helped protect 50 million acres, 2,991 river miles, remove or halt 29 dams, acquire 12 climbing areas & designate five marine reserves. 

For complete information on the Conservation Alliance, see www.conservationalliance.com.