July 2021 - 14

WORKING TOGETHER
Members of the Wyoming conservation community on a wildlife viewing tour spot animals in the distance. According to a study by the University of Wyoming in 2017, wildlife watchers were estimated
to spend $377 million, contributed $511 million annually to the Wyoming economy and provided 5,184 jobs. (Photo by Taylor Glenn)
Giving back
A new initiative gives businesses benefiting from wildlife tourism
a way to donate for conservation efforts
By WYldlife Fund staff
O
n a crisp, clear, April morning
in Jackson, people bonded over
coffee in the lobby of the hotel.
Name badges were gregariously
filled in. Masks were in place, so the names
and faces didn't always fully associate. There,
senior decision makers chatted - people
who have dedicated their lives to wildlife,
wildlands and the experience of the public
who flock to enjoy the more than 300 species
that inhabit Wyoming's rich and inspiring
landscapes. As more people arrived, they
overflowed outside into the cool, morning air.
At 8 a.m., Taylor Phillips of EcoTour
Adventures spoke to the group. There was
14 | July 2021
excitement in Phillips' voice as he welcomed
the superintendent of Grand Teton National
Park, the director of the Wyoming Game and
Fish Department, the Wyoming Game and
Fish Commission, the National Elk Refuge
manager and their key staff. The day brought
to fruition something he had looked forward
to for years: the opportunity to give back and
encourage others whose livelihoods depend
on wildlife and tourism to do the same.
The group was embarking on a wildlife
viewing tour to kick off the Wildlife Tourism
for Tomorrow initiative. During the tour,
Phillips wanted his guests to experience what
visitors to Wyoming seek, the joy they feel,
the memories they make and hopefully the
infusion of good stewardship they take with
them. The idea of senior resource managers
going on a wildlife viewing tour had been a
dream of Phillips' for many years, informally
discussed with friends like Chris Colligan of
the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, one of
the tour sponsors. It wasn't until one final
piece of the puzzle slipped into place that his
dream became a reality.
The opportunity for businesses to give
back to wildlife conservation through Wildlife
Tourism for Tomorrow was made possible
through the WYldlife Fund, which was created
as a supporting organization for Game
and Fish in 2019 to bring people together
over common initiatives that benefit wildlife.
Chris McBarnes, president of the WYldlife
Fund, realized Phillips' idea of businesses

July 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of July 2021

July 2021 - 1
July 2021 - 2
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https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/october-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/september-2021
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https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/may-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/april-2021
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https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/January2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/December2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/September2020
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