Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation

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Logo for the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF) is a conservation organization, founded in the United States in 1984 by four hunters from Troy, Montana (Bob Munson, Bill Munson, Dan Bull and Charlie Decker). Its mission is to ensure the future of elk, other wildlife, their habitat and our hunting heritage. In support of this mission the RMEF is committed to: (1) Conserving, restoring, and enhancing natural habitats; (2) Promoting the sound management of wild, free-ranging elk, which may be hunted or otherwise enjoyed; (3) Fostering cooperation among federal, state, tribal, and private organizations and individuals in wildlife management and habitat conservation; and (4) Educating members and the public about habitat conservation, the value of hunting, hunting ethics, and wildlife management.

Since 1984, the RMEF helped to conserve more than 6.3 million acres (19,000 km²) of habitat--an area larger than Yellowstone, Great Smoky Mountains, Grand Canyon, Glacier, Yosemite, and Rocky Mountain national parks combined. RMEF also helped to restore long-absent elk populations, with herds being reestablished in Kentucky, North Carolina, Ontario, Tennessee, Missouri, Virginia and Wisconsin. RMEF strives to be a strong voice for hunters in access, wildlife management, and conservation policy issues.

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation believes that Hunting Is Conservation. Early American leaders like Theodore Roosevelt shaped a set of ideals now known as the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation that declare wildlife belongs to all of us, every citizen is entitled to hunt and fish, and science-based, state-regulated hunting would drive wildlife conservation and management. Today, the U.S. has the most successful system in the world. And no one does more to financially sustain and uphold it than hunters.

Torstenson Family Endowment[edit]

In 2002, Bob Torstenson gifted the 93,403 acre (378 km²) Double H Ranch, later named the Torstenson Wildlife Center, in west-central New Mexico to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. In 2012 the RMEF, working with the Torstenson family, made a gift transition of the ranch resulting in the establishment of the Torstenson Family Endowment (TFE), one of the largest endowments ever for a wildlife conservation organization. The ranch is forever protected and conserved through a conservation easement maintained by the RMEF.

RMEF will use proceeds from the TFE exclusively to further its core mission programs: permanent land protection, habitat stewardship, elk restoration and hunting heritage. The TFE allows RMEF to increase project funding by attracting matching funds both from the private and public sectors, and allows RMEF to much more quickly meet and head off the habitat changes and challenges taking place across the United States.

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