||It has been suggested that this article be merged into Charles Darwin Foundation. (Discuss) Proposed since August 2013.|
Galapagos Conservancy is the result of the merger between two institutions, the Darwin Scientific Foundation (DSF), founded in 1985, and Charles Darwin Foundation, Inc. (CDF, Inc.), founded in 1992. The DSF was an endowment created by a joint program of the Nature Conservancy and the Charles Darwin Foundation (CDF). Available revenue from that endowment was intended to provide a regular source of financial support for scientific research in the Galapagos Islands.
The CDF, Inc. was a project of the CDF, the formation of which was underwritten by a two-year grant from the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF International) and an existing support program housed at the Smithsonian Institution. The CDF, Inc. was created to build a source of unrestricted revenue for the CDF’s operations through a direct mail and individual membership program targeted to US visitors to Galapagos. Over the years, the CDF, Inc. model was transferred to Europe and other countries worldwide that have relatively higher levels of visitation in Galapagos and the Friends of Galapagos Organizations (FOGOs) were established.
In the early years of CDF, Inc., the President of both CDF and CDF, Inc. was the same individual, allowing each institution an unusual level of access and interaction with the other. The CDF, Inc.’s work was focused almost exclusively on supporting the CDF and to a lesser extent, the Galapagos National Park.
Although DSF and CDF, Inc. were two separate organizations with different Boards of Directors, they shared an Executive Director. In 2001, the institutions merged and became CDF, Inc., a Delaware public charity. In the intervening years, CDF, Inc. took on a more proactive role in targeting funding to a range of Galapagos conservation issues, some of which were outside the CDF’s immediate brief and carried out by other actors. In 2006, CDF, Inc. changed its name to Galapagos Conservancy to better reflect its work and to make clearer the difference between GC and the CDF. With this change, GC became even more self-directed in its fundraising and program support and was no longer solely affiliated with the Charles Darwin Foundation.