News about the Natural Resources Foundation

In the links below, we’re excited to share articles, interviews, and news about the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin.

If you are a member of the media, please reach out to our communications director (contact information below). 

Press Releases

Whooping crane walks through tall grass

Breaking records, saving birds: Bird Protection Fund announces 2022 grants

[October 10th, 2022] The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin is directing the record-breaking $117,000 raised during the 2022 Great Wisconsin Birdathon to the state’s biggest bird conservation needs


Giving back to birds: Bird Protection Fund announces 2021 funding projects

[September 28, 2021] As bird populations decline across North America, the Bird Protection Fund takes action, supporting on-the-ground conservation and education initiatives


Birding for a cause: Wisconsinites come together for bird conservation

[April 13, 2021] Wisconsin’s largest fundraiser for bird conservation returns, connecting bird enthusiasts across the state.


Natural Resources Foundation Elects Mark LaBarbera Chair

[January 12, 2021] The Board chose Mark LaBarbera of Hazel Green as its new Chairman effective January 1. The NRF Board approved a new slate of officers with Treasurer Tom Dott of Madison moving to Vice Chair, Finance Committee Chair David Adams of Franklin moving to Treasurer and continuing to run the Finance Committee, and Rebecca Haefner of Wauwatosa continuing as Board Secretary.


Cherish Wisconsin Outdoors Fund Reaches $1 Million

[December 02, 2020] The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reached a major milestone of a $1 million endowment fund that provides permanent funding for habitat management projects on land owned or managed by the agency.


Birders across the state step up in response to Wisconsin’s bird loss

[April 14, 2020] Wisconsin’s largest fundraiser for bird conservation puts a new twist on a cherished tradition in light of COVID-19.


2019 C.D. Besadny Conservation Fund Awarded to 19 Organizations Across Wisconsin

[December 2, 2019] Established in 1990, the C.D. Besadny Conservation Fund supports conservation and education projects that benefit every part of Wisconsin—lands, waters, and wildlife—and connects Wisconsinites to natural resources through education and outreach.


Bird Protection Fund announces plans to support Wisconsin birds in 2020

[October 21, 2019] With declining bird populations across the U.S. and Canada, the Bird Protection Fund takes action on Wisconsin bird conservation.


Cherish Wisconsin Delivers a Win-Win for Hunters, Anglers, and Wildlife Watchers in Central Wisconsin

[September 25, 2019] he Cherish Wisconsin Outdoors Fund, a permanent endowment that supports Wisconsin’s public lands, will make its second disbursement, awarding funds to care for public lands at Lawrence Creek Fish and Wildlife Area in Adams County.


Anonymous half-million dollar donation creates hope for Wisconsin pollinators

[August 26, 2019] The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin recently received a $500,000 donation that will support statewide native pollinator conservation efforts through the creation of the Wisconsin Pollinator Protection Fund. 


Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin welcomes new Executive Director

[August 5, 2019] The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin’s Board of Directors is pleased to announce David Clutter as the next Executive Director of the organization. He will begin his work with the Foundation on August 22nd. Clutter’s appointment is the culmination of a three-month nationwide executive search that drew more than 70 candidates. 


Hunters buying their licenses can make a small donation to boost wildlife habitat work

[November 6, 2018] Hunters buying their gun-deer licenses in coming weeks have the opportunity to make a small donation to help improve wildlife habitat on state lands. Before check out on the Go Wild licensing system, on-screen prompts ask license buyers if they want to make a small donation to the Cherish Wisconsin Outdoor Fund.


Nearly a third of 2018 CD Besadny Conservation Fund grants will benefit northern Wisconsin

[October 25, 2018]  Thirty organizations across the state have been selected as recipients of the 2018 C.D. Besadny Conservation Fund, a fund managed by the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin to support grassroots conservation and education projects which benefit Wisconsin’s lands, waters, and wildlife, and which connect people to Wisconsin’s natural resources. C.D. Besadny grants range from $500 to $1000 each; the total amount awarded to this year’s recipients equaled $28,043. 


Bird Protection Fund passes the $1 million mark for Wisconsin bird conservation

[September 6, 2018] The Bird Protection Fund—a collaboration of the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources—has raised and distributed $1,014,566 for bird conservation since it was created in 2009.



September 13, 2022: Wisconsin’s first grassland climate adaptation site is a ‘best case scenario’ for mitigating climate change (WPR)

June 6, 2022: Birders Gather to Raise Funds for Birds and their Habitat (WORT)

May 14, 2022: Wisconsin coalition urges Congress to pass bill that would save habitat and keep species from becoming endangered (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

May 13, 2022: Wisconsin’s natural world is at risk. A bill pending in Congress would help protect it (Green Bay Gazette)

May 2, 2022: Field Trips from the Natural Resources Foundation Show Off Wisconsin from All Angles (Up North News)

April 24, 2022: Go Birding for a Cause with ’22 Great Wisconsin Birdathon (Madison Audubon Badger Birder)

March 2022: Field Trips Foster Love of the Outdoors (Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Magazine)

March 17, 2022: These field trips explore Wisconsin’s special natural places — including some closed to the public (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

October 11, 2021: Lake Wingra is classroom for Edgewood Campus School students (Newskudo)

September 28, 2021: Great Wisconsin Birdathon funds to help birds throughout the Americas (Birdwatching Daily)

June 23, 2021: DNR and Partners Team up to Improve 2,000 Acres of Pollinator Habitat in Southwestern Wisconsin (Lake Superior News)

April 30, 2021: Enjoy “Migration Miracle” And Help Birds in Wisconsin (Antigo Times)

April 11, 2021: North Iowa Nitty Gritty: Goats on the Go isn’t kidding around when it comes to landscaping (Globe Gazette)

March 1, 2021: Outdoor classrooms shouldn’t end with the pandemic (Bloomberg Report)

February 25, 2021: David Clutter talks about the programs of the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin and the Cherish Wisconsin Outdoors Fund (Dan Small Outdoors Radio 28:50)

September 18,2020: Wild Things: The Hunt is on for an Escape from COVID-19 Madness (Door County Pulse)

September 12,2020: Mark LaBarbera: A Big Win for Outdoor Recreation in Wisconsin (Wisconsin State Journal)

September 9, 2020: Focus on Nature:Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin (Price County Review)

July 9,2020: Band Owls, Climb Trees and More on the Popular NRF Field Trips Which are Still on for 2020        (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

May 25, 2020: Birdwatching Blossoms In time of Coronavirus (New York Daily News)

May 9, 2020: Don’t Share the Binoculars: Even Birdwatching has Changed in the Era of COVID-19        (Wisconsin State Journal)

May 4, 2020: Birding is a Socially Distancing Friendly Sport you can do During the Great Wisconsin Birdathon (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

April 27, 2020: Birders Across the State Step up in Response to Bird Loss (The Country Today)

April 22, 2020: Megan Severson and Abe Lenoch: Wisconsin Birding for Beginners (The Cap Times – Madison)

April 20, 2020: Birders Across the State Step up in Response to Wisconsin’s Bird Loss (Lake Milles Leader)

April 22, 2019: Tours offer glimpse of Driftless history (The Country Today)

March 27, 2019: Natural Resources Foundation (Larry Meiller Show)

March 20, 2019: Maple trees signal spring arrival (Portage Daily Register)

March 14, 2019: See secret natural spots and rare species on a field trip with the Natural Resources Foundation (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

December 10, 2018: Winter is prime time to seed milkweed for monarchs (WXPR Radio)

November 13, 2018: Hunters can help improve habitat with donation (WXPR Radio)

October 31, 2018: License buyers can add to Wisconsin’s outdoor legacy (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

October 19, 2018: Connecting, exploring, and engaging at Crestwood Elementary (Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction)

October 11, 2018: To tag a butterfly (Isthmus)

September 17, 2018: Two Rivers’ Woodland Dunes braces forested swales as emerald ash borer nears (Herald Times Reporter)

September 1, 2018: Conference in Pewaukee to address decline in swifts, nighthawks and other winged bug-eaters (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

May 30, 2018: Nature and Wildife Writers Roundtable (Larry Meiller Show, min. 0:18:00)

April 6, 2018: Great Wisconsin Birdathon takes flight during Year of the Bird (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

April 5, 2018: The call of the wild: The Wisconsin Master Naturalist program trains volunteers to study and celebrate our state resources (Isthmus)

March 29, 2018: 8 scenic and historical train rides in Wisconsin (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

February 17, 2018: Record number of snowy owls sighted in Wisconsin this winter (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

January 8, 2018: Badger and Arlington take the stage (Project SNOWstorm)

Our Impact

Our Impact

Learn more about our impact on our blog!

Current Projects

Through our grantmaking programs, we support hundreds of organizations across Wisconsin, funding projects from statewide wildlife monitoring programs to creating butterfly gardens at local schools.

A Visual Timeline

See a visual timeline of our history as the Foundation and the learn about the impact we have had at a state-wide and national level.
Shelly Torkelson

Shelly Torkelson

Director of Communications

(608) 409-3113

Shelly oversees the Foundation's strategic communications and marketing. She tells our stories of positive impact on the land, broadens awareness of our programs, and creates connections with key audiences.