On July 15, members of the Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus (GSC) gathered in Des Moines, Iowa for a reception hosted by the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF). Held in conjunction with the National Governors Association (NGA) Summer Meeting, this reception provided a venue for governors and stakeholders to come together in support of conservation and share achievements, as well as priorities, for their respective states.
CSF’s Midwestern States and Fisheries Program Director Chris Horton welcomed attendees, including state executives, gubernatorial staff, conservation organization representatives, and other CSF partners to the event. Additionally, he thanked them for their commitment to supporting pro-sportsmen’s issues and initiatives.
NGA Summer Meeting host governor and former GSC Co-Chair Governor Terry Branstad praised the hunting heritage of Iowa. “Like many Iowan’s, I grew up on a farm hunting and fishing. I have been blessed with the opportunity to not only share that heritage with family and friends, but also to work to protect our outdoor traditions for future generations while serving as governor of this great state. I am proud to have served as the Co-Chair of the Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus, and we were honored to host last week’s GSC reception at the National Governors Association meeting in Iowa.”
GSC Co-Chair Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (WV) commented on his tenure within the GSC and the need for organizations to continue steadfast in their commitment to conservation. “It has been an honor to serve in the Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus for the past several years. I encourage the organizations and people involved to keep up the good work that is so important to promote conservation and our country’s sporting traditions. And I invite everyone to come and explore ‘Wild and Wonderful’ West Virginia, where you will find tremendous and plentiful recreational opportunities.”
Title sponsor of the reception was Ducks Unlimited. Host sponsors were American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, Bass Pro Shops, Cabela’s Outdoor Fund, CropLife America, Dallas Safari Club, Exxon Mobil Corporation, JC Larkin Company LLC., MOB Advocacy, National Rifle Association, National Shooting Sports Foundation, Pheasants Forever, Plano Synergy, Reynolds American Inc., Richard Childress Racing, Safari Club International, Shell Oil Company, Shimano American Corporation, Vista Outdoor Inc., and Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America.
Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?