Wednesday, August 10, 2022

WSF Conservation Grants Focusing on Chapter Projects

Bozeman, Montana- The Wild Sheep Foundation recently revamped its Conservation Grant-in-Aid process to direct more of the funds its raises to projects identified and prioritized by its network of chapters and affiliate chapters.

“As the trusted facilitator that raises and directs funds for wild sheep conservation projects across North America and internationally, we receive a lot of grant requests on an annual basis,” explained Gray N. Thornton, President, and CEO of the Wild Sheep Foundation. “That’s good news. A lot of agencies, universities, individuals, and other partners are focusing on wild sheep. We wanted to match this focus by evolving our allocation processes to better align with what our chapters and affiliates see as top priorities in their jurisdictions.”

WSF annually funds more than $6 million in conservation programs and has invested nearly $50 Million in Mission programs during the past ten years alone. WSF Conservation Staff and its Professional Resource Advisory Board will be reviewing $1.8 Million in just grant requests this month for its fiscal year 2022-23.

“When we announced to our chapters and affiliate chapters that we wanted to hear from them directly as to their areas of greatest need we saw a 231% increase in grant requests over our prior fiscal year,” said Kevin Hurley, WSF’s Vice President of Conservation. “This still includes grant applications from our state, provincial, and tribal partners, who work closely with our chapters and affiliates.”

By early September, the WSF board will decide and fund a suite of important wild sheep projects to kick off its FY2022-2023 conservation funding.

“We’re excited about this new approach,” Thornton added. “The generosity of the wild sheep community to provide critical funding that is not coming from anywhere else should be matched with everyone’s best effort to put these moneys to work across all suitable habitats that have wild sheep or should.”


The Wild Sheep Foundation (WSF), based in Bozeman, Mont., was founded in 1977 by wild sheep conservationists and enthusiasts. With a membership of more than 10,500 worldwide, WSF is the premier advocate for wild sheep and other mountain wildlife and their habitats. WSF has raised and expended more than $140 million on wild sheep habitat and population enhancements, education, and conservation advocacy programs in North America, Europe, and Asia to “Put and Keep Wild Sheep On the Mountain”®. These and other efforts have increased bighorn sheep populations in North America from historic lows in the 1950-60s of 25,000 to more than 85,000 today.