Our Organization

Protecting wildlife, habitat, and public access in Montana for eight decades.

Photo: Janko Ferlic

Historic conservation

The Montana Wildlife Federation is Montana’s oldest, largest, and most effective wildlife conservation organization. Our roots trace back to 1936 when hunters, anglers and other conservationists joined landowners to address the loss of Montana’s natural lands, healthy waters and abundant wildlife. The decades of westward expansion prior to the 1930’s left wildlife populations decimated throughout North America, and Montana was no exception. That year the first North American Wildlife Conference was held in Washington D.C. and wildlife conservation was thrust into the limelight. The National Wildlife Federation, Montana Wildlife Federation, and many other state wildlife organizations were formed. Since then, MWF has championed scientific wildlife management and fought to conserve the great natural resources found in this state and wildlife populations have rebounded. This legacy is maintained through our dedicated staff and volunteers. 

Credit Kyle Mlynar 4 web

Wildlife Management

MWF is involved in critical collaborative efforts throughout Montana that work to protect public lands, enhance public access and protect critical wildlife habitat and populations. We work closely with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks to develop recommendations for wildlife management and we work to ensure the voice of Montana’s wildlife conservationists, hunters and anglers are heard in the state Legislature and in Washington D.C.

Conservation Victories

Over the years, MWF has secured some of the Treasure State’s most important conservation victories, including: 

  • The best stream access law in the country
  • A ban on wildlife farms
  • Protection of Montana’s public lands and waters

But we didn’t stop there. We are now engaged on critical issues including:

  • Chronic Wasting Disease
  • Grizzly Bear management
  • Energy Development and Sage Grouse
  • Elk management
  • Protection of secure wildlife habitat
  • Clean water protection and enhancement

Strength in numbers

Citizens invested in wildlife management were critical to our previous accomplishments and are critical to our continued success. Our network of affiliate organizations throughout the state in addition to our strong member base helps us stay heavily engaged in key issues affecting wildlife at the local, regional, and statewide levels.

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If you value wildlife management in this great state and want to add your voice to our legacy of conservation successes, please provide a donation and become a member today.

“A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.” – Aldo Leopold

Affiliated Organizations

Rosebud/Treasure Wildlife Association

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Our Friends and Partners

Our Work
Healthy fish and wildlife populations depend on high-quality, intact habitat. The Montana Wildlife Federation works to protect habitat on public and private lands throughout the state. We advocate for scientifically-based land management and conservation of wild lands and wild waters.
Our Work
Fish and wildlife that have disappeared from other parts of the West are still abundant in Montana. However, the pressures and threats grow greater and more numerous with each passing year. MWF works to advocate for sound science and policies aimed at protecting every species found here, whether it is a nongame, big game, or one of our amazing fish species.
Our Work
Montana is home to some of the highest quality natural resources in the nation as well as the longest hunting seasons in the West. However, wildlife managers often face pressure to manage wildlife and recreation for private profit. MWF fights to protect public access and recreational opportunities for people of every color, creed, religion, gender, and sexual orientation.
Our Work
The Montana Wildlife Federation has a grassroots network of local affiliated clubs around Montana.

Make A Difference

Your generous donation supports Montana Wildlife Federation’s work conserving our wildlife, wild places, and hunting and angling opportunities for current and future generations.

Tom Puchlerz

Tom is married with two children, two grandchildren, and two English setters. Retired after 38 years with the US Forest Service as a biologist and administrator with assignments in Montana, Wyoming, Oregon, Washington and Alaska, Tom is a member of numerous local and national wildlife and fisheries conservation organizations. He is an avid hunter, angler, and advocate for wild places and wild things.

Anna Le

Gardiner

Anna is a passionate environmental educator, conservationist, aquatic biologist, and outdoor recreationist. She has spent the past year in California, Oregon, Wyoming, Montana, and Colorado working in freshwater and saltwater ecosystems, exploring public lands, engaging with local communities, and educating K-12 students about conservation efforts and the outdoors. Anna holds a Bachelor’s degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences with an emphasis on Natural Resources and Environmental Law and Policy from Oregon State University. Like most people in the US, she was introduced to the outdoors later in life. In recent years, she has focused on opening the gates to the outdoors to all communities and increasing efforts to create more stewards of the land, water, and air.

Jamie Wolf bio photo

Jamie Wolf

Vice President for Internal Affairs - Missoula

Hunting and fishing are traditions passed down from generation to generation, and being an outdoors person has always been a major part of who Jamie is and how she relates to her family. She is eager to volunteer her skills for conservation. She cares deeply about giving a voice to wildlife and their habitats, including our public lands.

John Salazar

Treasurer - Livingston

John has been a small business owner for the past 23 years in Livingston, Montana. When he is not exploring a new part of the world with his wife and two sons, he spends most of his free time in the back-country hiking, rifle and bow hunting, fly fishing, and camping. Because of this love for his community and the outdoors, John began teaching Hunters Education and Bow Hunter’s Education with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks in 2009.

Bradley Jones

Secretary - Helena

Brad is originally from Lexington, North Carolina with deep roots in the foothills and piedmont regions of that state. He first came West in 2003 on a student exchange program to the University of Montana, where he first became addicted to Montana’s beauty. After finishing his undergraduate degree at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Brad spent a few years after traveling and working seasonal jobs for the National Park Service. Brad came back to Missoula in 2009 where he worked to become a Montana resident and graduated from the University of Montana School of Law. After stints practicing in Great  Falls and Bozeman, Brad has worked in the public sector as an attorney since 2016. Brad’s passion for conserving our public lands and wildlife has only gotten stronger with each year that he hunts, backpacks, and floats in Montana’s wild places.

Bill Geer

Past-President - Lolo

Bill is a retired fish and wildlife biologist and former Director of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. He was the Coordinator for the North American Waterfowl Management Plan for the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation; Vice President for Field Operations and Conservation Programs for the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation; and Director of Western Lands for the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. He serves also on the boards of directors for MWF affiliate Hellgate Hunters & Anglers.

Skip Kowalski

Past President, MWF Representative - Stevensville

Skip’s love for wildlife and wild places led him to obtain degrees in wildlife biology and a four-decade career as a biologist with the U.S. Forest Service. In retirement, he tries to help ensure that there is adequate habitat for Montana’s wildlife by working on sportsmen, land use, and fish and wildlife-related issues. He still hunts and fishes, but increasingly finds himself behind a camera watching, admiring and photographing the critters.

Kathy Hadley

Deer Lodge

Kathy is a life-long hunter, angler, and conservationist. She and her family spend their summers on the water and their fall in the forest and on the prairie, chasing elk, mule deer, antelope, pheasants, and sage-grouse. Like many Montanans, she hunts and fishes for both the outdoor recreational experience and to put food on the table. Kathy and her husband live on a ranch outside of Anaconda, MT. Kathy recently retired as Executive Director of the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), after 33 years with the organization.

Lisa Ballard

Red lodge

A past-president of the Outdoor Writers Association of America, Lisa Ballard has spent most of her life outdoors. A champion ski racer, she runs women’s ski clinics and adult race camps during the winter. The rest of the year, you’ll find her hunting, fishing, hiking and paddling throughout Montana and much of the world on assignments as a freelance journalist. After two decades producing and hosting outdoor and sports television programming, for which she garnered 3 Emmys and 5 additional Emmy nominations, she segwayed to full-time writing and photography. She contributes to 25+ magazines and websites, including Montana Outdoors and other state conservation magazines, various Montana travel planners and occasionally for The Montana Quarterly. She also writes and provides imagery about outdoor recreation, conservation challenges, wildlife and nature for a number of national conservation organizations including The Nature Conservancy, the Izaak Walton League of America and the National Wild Turkey Federation. Lisa basecamps in Red Lodge, with her husband Jack and two English setters.

Liz McFarland

Broadus/Bozeman

Liz recently retired from a 33-year career with the U.S. Forest Service, where she served in multiple front-line and leadership positions in Montana and Idaho. She served for twelve years as a District Ranger and the last ten years as the Services Staff Officer for the Custer Gallatin Forest with responsibilities for the Recreation, Wilderness, Trails, Engineering, Lands, Minerals, and Heritage programs.

John Gibson

Billings

John has been fishing in both fresh and salt waters for over half a century. During 34 years with the U.S. Forest Service John’s employment allowed him to enjoy hunting and fishing over much of the Western US. He holds a B.S. Degree in Forestry from the University of Montana. John has served for over a decade as the President of the Public Land and Water Access Association Inc.

John Vore

John Vore was raised in a hunting and outdoor oriented family and has been hunting, hiking, camping and backpacking since he was a young boy. Now retired, he served 39 years with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks as a wildlife biologist in both research and management and lastly as Game Management Bureau Chief. John is also an avid shooter and hobby amateur gunsmith.  Because of his love of wildlife and wild places, it was only natural that he gravitated to the Montana Wildlife Federation and the important work it does in the public arena.

Chris Marchion

Anaconda

Chris has spent over 30 years working on wildlife issues in Montana. In 2014, Chris was recognized for his long and passionate service to Montana’s outdoors through his induction into the Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame.

Jim Vashro

Kalispell

Jim worked 39 years for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks before retiring as the regional fisheries manager in Kalispell where he lives with his wife Sandi. In the last 20 years, he focused on aquatic education and access, still active with Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW), Hooked on Fishing, Casting For Recovery and Bowhunter Education as well as crusading against illegal fish introductions. Currently, he is the president of Flathead Wildlife, Inc. when not fishing, hunting, hiking or paddling somewhere.

Tim Roberts

Tim Roberts is a small business owner from Fort Benton, and the Maintenance Supervisor at Highwood Public School. In a past life, he has been a bowhunter education master instructor and a state chairman for the National Bowhunter Education Program. He is currently serving as President of the Traditional Bowhunters of Montana. In his free time, he looks forward to mountain biking, spending time on our public lands, and waters hunting carp, and bowhunting.

Glenn Elison

Lewistown

Glenn lives in Lewistown and continues to work part-time as the Conservation Fund’s Alaska State Director. Before joining the Conservation Fund in 2001, Glenn worked for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Refuge and as a statewide manager for the service’s wildlife and land management programs. Glenn was the lead USFWS negotiator with the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council’s habitat protection program. Glenn is an active member of the Public Land and Water Access, Inc. He has a B.S. in wildlife biology from Colorado State University and an M.S. from Washington State University.

James Wyatt

Great Falls

James grew up in Missouri hunting waterfowl and bass fishing before moving to Montana at age 12, where he adopted trout and big game hunting and has called home ever since. In 2006, James commissioned into the U.S. Air Force and served as a Civil Engineering Officer for 8 years before being medically retired at the grade of Captain. After the military, James moved back to Great Falls where he currently works as a Project Manager & Mechanical Engineer for GPD, PC Consulting Engineers. He holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Montana State University as well as an MS in Architectural Engineering from Pennsylvania State University. James has a daughter (Aspen) and son (Easton) that he strives to raise with an appreciation for wild places and connections to the natural world.  He enjoys spending his free time hiking, fly-fishing and practicing traditional archery in preparation for another September.

Frank Szollosi

Executive Director

Frank comes to MWF from the National Wildlife Federation’s Great Lakes office in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where he directed climate policy. In that role, his focus was on protecting freshwater fisheries, the outdoor economy, and sources of drinking water. He also served on NWF’s national campaigns team advocating policies that protect, restore and connect habitat such as the Land and Water Conservation Fund and defense of public lands; transforming conservation to meet new challenges; and connecting more Americans to wildlife. Szollosi earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Utah and graduate degrees from the University of Michigan. He has extensive experience in government as both a staffer and a local elected official. Szollosi said he looks forward to working with the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks and other state agencies, as well as landowners, businesses, tribal governments, federal partners, and Montana cities and counties. Szollosi has spent over 25 years chasing fish with his fly rod, and enthusiastically joining annual hunts with friends and colleagues. Alongside his wife and four children, Frank enjoys time kayaking, downhill skiing and backpacking.

Morgan Marks

North-Central/Eastern Montana Field Coordinator

Morgan grew up in Pennsylvania and thanks to Montana Conservation Corps, an AmeriCorps program, she moved to Montana to serve on a trail crew in 2008. She has been calling Montana home ever since, with the exception of a few stints living abroad in Australia when she served as a Rotary International Peace Fellow studying conflict and peace, and Zambia when she served with the United States Peace Corps promoting aquaculture in the eastern part of the country. Morgan is an avid angler and she’s a hunter. Conservation work, localized peacebuilding and conflict resolution are passions of hers. Creating safe space for connections to be fostered and strengthened, and for dialogue to be shared between people is her goal. Before joining MWF, Morgan worked in the non-profit sector, the private sector, and with the Montana state government. Morgan is the point of contact for North-Central and Eastern Montana. 

Sonya SMith

Communication Director

Sonya develops, implements, and manages MWF’s communications strategy, campaigns, media relations, and programs across the state. You can find her exploring with her family in eastern Montana, rafting, hunting, and mountain biking.

sonya@mtwf.org

Alec Underwood

Federal Conservation Campaigns Director

Alec is responsible for developing and implementing MWF’s federal conservation advocacy and policy campaigns to protect Montana’s fish and wildlife. He spends most of his free time hunting big game and fly fishing Montana’s cherished trout rivers. He also enjoys backpacking, skiing, photography, and woodworking. 

alec@mtwf.org

Marcus Strange

Marcus Strange

Programs and Partnerships Director

Marcus role as Programs and Partnerships Director is fueled by his passion for collaborating with and celebrating others. Marcus is a native Pennsylvanian and converted Montanan. Prior to joining the Montana Wildlife Federation, he worked for the City of Helena and the State of Montana in the Department of Education.  Marcus attended Brigham Young University where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science. In his free time, Marcus hosts his own podcast, enjoys volunteering in the community, hunting, CrossFit, and photography.

Eric Clewis

Western Montana Field Coordinator

Eric Clewis comes to the Montana Wildlife Federation with a degree in wildlife biology from the University of Montana as well as several years of conservation experience around the West. He has worked as a wildlife biologist for state agencies in addition to working on various conservation field crews.  In his spare time, he enjoys taking his wife and son backpacking, canoeing, and hiking in the mountains of western Montana.

eclewis@mtwf.org

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