Pheasants Forever Marks 30 Years of Wildlife Habitat Conservation Success Aug. 5th 2012

“The Habitat Organization” unique, most efficient among conservation groups.

Pheasants Forever
Pheasants Forever

Saint Paul, Minn. –-( Pheasants Forever, which incorporated on August 5, 1982, will mark 30 years of wildlife habitat conservation this weekend.

The national conservation organization’s 700 chapters, 130,000 members and supporters will officially celebrate this milestone at National Pheasant Fest & Quail Classic, coming to the Minneapolis Convention Center next February 15, 16 and 17.

The nation’s largest devotee to upland conservation, Pheasants Forever still stands out – like it did 30 years ago – as the only national conservation organization empowering its local chapters to keep the funds they raise. The decision to utilize this unique local model not only set Pheasants Forever apart from other conservation groups, but helped fuel Pheasants Forever’s grassroots growth.

“From 0 to 8.5 million acres of wildlife habitat conservation in 30 years is a testament to the passion people have for Pheasants Forever’s mission,” said Howard Vincent, who started as a Pheasants Forever volunteer, has been with the organization fulltime for the last 25 years and has served as its national president and chief executive officer for the last 12 years, “The challenges working against habitat protection have never been greater, but with more chapters than ever, more members than ever, a program efficiency of 91.7 percent and 225 fulltime employees – more than half of them biologists working with landowners at a local level – Pheasants Forever is poised to do even more for wildlife in our next 30 years.”

30 Years of Pheasants Forever – Historical Timeline

Mission Statement: Pheasants Forever is dedicated to the conservation of pheasants, quail and other wildlife through habitat improvements, public awareness, education and land management policies and programs.

  • March 1982 – Dennis Anderson, Outdoor Editor at Saint Paul Pioneer Press and Dispatch, voices concern over state of upland habitat, urges pheasant hunters and conservationists to rally
  • August 5, 1982 – Pheasants Forever incorporates
  • February 1983 – “Rooster Tails” mails, Pheasants Forever’s first publication
  • April 15, 1983 – Pheasants Forever’s first banquet draws more than 800 supporters
  • April 1983 – Pheasants Forever’s first goal, Minnesota Pheasant Habitat Stamp, passes
  • 1983 – First Pheasants Forever chapter forms in Kandiyohi County, Minnesota
  • 1984 – Iowa Pioneer Pheasants Forever chapter becomes first chapter outside Minnesota
  • 1985 – Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is established; Pheasants Forever has played an important role in promoting, improving and continuing CRP for more than 25 years
  • 1985 – All Pheasants Forever members receive the Pheasants Forever Journal of Upland Conservation
  • 1986 – Pheasants Forever headquarters move from Executive Director Jeff Finden’s basement to small building in White Bear Lake, Minnesota
  • 1986 – Pheasants Forever model continues to spread as first Nebraska chapter, Elkhorn Valley, forms
  • 1990 – Pheasants Forever membership tops 50,000
  • 1996 – Dave Nomsen, Pheasants Forever Vice President of Government Affairs, leads PF’s growing Farm Bill conservation advocacy efforts
  • 1999 – Pheasants Forever chapters top 25,000 habitat projects in year for first time
  • 2000 – Most Pheasants Forever chapters also holding mentored youth hunts
  • 2000 – Howard Vincent becomes Pheasants Forever’s second CEO, succeeding Jeff Finden
  • 2003 – Pheasants Forever Farm Bill Biologists are new positions to meet one-on-one with landowners
  • 2003 – Pheasants Forever launches Build a Wildlife Area program to protect habitat, create public hunting lands
  • 2003 – Pheasants Forever’s first National Pheasant Fest draws 12,500, becomes annual event
  • August 10, 2005 – Pheasants Forever launches quail conservation division called Quail Forever in response to continued loss of suitable bobwhite quail habitat and bobwhite population declines of more than 80 percent
  • 2008 – Kansan Wallace Weber donates 1,700 acres, largest donation to Pheasants Forever in its history
  • 2008 – Pheasants Forever helps establish CRP practice, SAFE, designed specifically for wildlife
  • 2008 – 29,802 help Pheasants Forever celebrate 25th anniversary at National Pheasant Fest in Saint Paul, Minnesota
  • 2009 – Teens from Oskaloosa, Iowa, form nation’s first high school Pheasants Forever chapter
  • 2010 – Pheasants Forever’s “Bird Dogs for Habitat” campaign celebrates love of hunting dogs, conservation
  • 2011 – Pheasants Forever purchases 2,700 acre Idaho ranch; largest acquisition in PF history is open to public hunting
  • 2011 – Pheasants Forever spends more than $50 million on conservation mission
  • 2012 – Pheasants Forever has more than 700 local chapters, 130,000 members and has improved more than 8.5 million acres of wildlife habitat
  • August 5, 2012 – Pheasants Forever marks milestone of 30 years of wildlife habitat conservation success

Pheasants Forever, including its quail conservation division, Quail Forever, is the nation’s largest nonprofit organization dedicated to upland habitat conservation. Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have more than 130,000 members and 700 local chapters across the United States and Canada. Chapters are empowered to determine how 100 percent of their locally raised conservation funds are spent, the only national conservation organization that operates through this truly grassroots structure.

Pheasants Forever is dedicated to the conservation of pheasants, quail and other wildlife through habitat improvements, public awareness, education and land management policies and programs.