Smart investments for smart conservation

Simply put—TU is an organization worth growing.

We all recognize the streams and fish we treasure are being threatened by climate change, population growth, development pressures, and a growing lack of connection to the outdoors, altering how our society cares for these irreplaceable natural resources. If we are going to be ultimately successful in achieving our shared conservation goals, we must rise to the challenge and scale our response to meet the needs of this moment.

As part of our 5-year Strategic Plan, we are committed to harnessing the collective power of TU with a goal to invest in systems and people—staff, volunteers, and partners. In fiscal year 2023, we invested in better tools, technology, training, and resources necessary to achieve unprecedented restoration outcomes. Bolstered by stronger operations and relationships, TU is positioned to meet the scale of the need and opportunity for our work more ably than at any point in our 65-year history.

Some of the key investments we are making include:

REORGANIZING OUR EASTERN AND WESTERN CONSERVATION PROGRAM STRUCTURE to reflect the growth in the scope of our work, manage the increased number of staff and projects, and to meet the needs of that growing team into the future. This restructuring, along with investments in new regional and state leadership roles will fuel additional on-the-ground impact and strengthen our connections with local communities through our powerful network of 400+ state councils and chapters.

IMPLEMENTING SCALABLE SYSTEMS to support future growth, including a new financial management system designed for the size and complexity of the organization, major changes to our customer relationship management database to enhance communications and engagement, and targeted upgrades to human resources capacity and systems.

PROVIDING EXPANDED SUPPORT FOR OUR PROGRAM TEAMS including accounting and finance staff to help manage the complex accounting and compliance requirements for government grants, which have more than doubled from FY23 to FY24. This added support enables program staff to focus on what they do best because they can lean on specialized skill sets to support financial management and reporting requirements.

ENHANCING OUR STORYTELLING AND ADVOCACY CAPACITY to expand our presence with, and better engage communities, decision-makers, and members to advance our mission. We are investing in this capacity to ensure that the public and policymakers understand the threats to the recreational and economic values of the landscapes and species we hold dear, as well as the communities that depend on them, and take action to support their recovery, protection, and resilience.

INVESTING THE STAFF TIME AND RESOURCES needed to complete the project planning, engineering, analysis, and research and development work to make the case for and secure hundreds of millions in federally funded restoration projects. The time spent developing proposals, persuading, negotiating, and working out detailed implementation plans are an up-front organizational investment that propels the impact we can harness over the coming decade.

Making these smart investments for smart conservation is strengthening and transforming our ability to get even more done for our watersheds. It is your passion and generosity that makes these investments possible as we build a better future together. Thank you.

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