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  • Ken Perrotte

NWTF Recognized for 50 Years by Virginia House of Delegates - Founded in Fredericksburg in 1973

Tom Rodgers founded the NWTF in Fredericksburg, Virginia, in 1973.

Here's a March 1, 2023, release from the National Wild Turkey Federation. The resolution was a joint effort between the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources and the Virginia State Chapter NWTF.

EDGEFIELD, S.C. — Earlier this week, in the Virginia General Assembly, the House of Delegates passed House Resolution 402, commending the NWTF on its 50 years of success. “As we celebrate 50 years of conservation of the habitat and the wild turkey, our good work has not gone unnoticed,” said Jon Joyner, NWTF Virginia State Chapter president. “With our humble beginnings right here in Fredericksburg, Virginia, in 1973, our mission has continued to expand, but our core values remain unchanged. Our first 50 years have been instrumental in bringing back huntable populations of the wild turkey as well as preserving our hunting heritage through our outreach and conservation efforts. On a personal level, in my 30-plus years with the NWTF, this organization has brought me a tremendous amount of memories and friendships that will be everlasting. We are ready to rocket into our next 50 years to build upon the successes that we have already accomplished, as conservation never stops.” The resolution reads: “WHEREAS, for five decades, the National Wild Turkey Federation, Inc., has supported science-based wildlife management, research, and habitat conservation; and

WHEREAS, the National Wild Turkey Federation was incorporated on March 28, 1973, in Fredericksburg; and

WHEREAS, over the course of 50 years, the National Wild Turkey Federation and its chapters and millions of members across the nation have worked with state, federal, and nongovernmental partners to promote the conservation of the wild turkey and the preservation of the nation’s hunting heritage, contributing to one of the greatest conservation success stories in American history, the return of the wild turkey from the brink of extinction; and

WHEREAS, members of the National Wild Turkey Federation have played a critical role in reversing the decline in hunting participation through nationwide investment in hunter recruitment, retention, and reactivation efforts and by partnering with states to develop opportunities to engage people from all walks of life in outdoor activities; since 2012, the organization has recruited and reactivated more than 1.5 million hunters; and

WHEREAS, the National Wild Turkey Federation and its members have invested more than half a billion dollars to conserve or enhance more than 22 million acres of critical wildlife habitat, forests, and grasslands across public and private lands since 1985, while also providing more than $8.5 million in research throughout North America to ensure healthy wild turkey populations into the future; and

WHEREAS, the National Wild Turkey Federation is the largest and longest-serving nongovernmental stewardship partner of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service, conserving habitat on National Forest System lands for more than 40 years and heavily engaging in the development and implementation of the USDA’s wildfire crisis strategy for protecting communities and improving resilience in forests across America; and

WHEREAS, the National Wild Turkey Federation also works across land-ownership boundaries to increase clean and abundant water and promote healthy forests and wildlife habitat, resilient communities, and robust recreational opportunities across the country; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the House of Delegates, That the National Wild Turkey Federation, Inc., hereby be commended on the occasion of its 50th anniversary; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the House of Delegates prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to the National Wild Turkey Federation, Inc., as an expression of the House of Delegates’ admiration for the tireless and selfless work of the organization and its members to further science-based, state-led wildlife management and the conservation of America’s wild turkey and its habitat.” “A sincere ‘Thank You!’ goes out to Virginia DWR Director Ryan Brown, and Del. Brewer and Del. Edmunds for co-sponsoring the resolution, and for the entire House of Delegates for agreeing to adopt the resolution,” Joyner said. Learn more about the NWTF’s policy and advocacy work. About the National Wild Turkey Federation Since 1973, the National Wild Turkey Federation has invested over half a billion dollars into wildlife conservation and has conserved or enhanced over 22 million acres of critical wildlife habitat. The organization continues to drive wildlife conservation, forest resiliency and robust recreational opportunities throughout the U.S. by working across boundaries on a landscape scale.


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