FORT WORTH, TX — W.I.L.D. Class VII discussed current conservation issues this past weekend with some of today’s leaders in the conservation industry. They also gained first-hand knowledge of current conservation projects, both global and local, and learned the importance of knowing your audience when trying to communicate effectively.
Session III started off with a visit to Dallas Safari Club (DSC) headquarters, where our W.I.L.D. Class met with Executive Director, Corey Mason, as well as Assistant Editor of DSC Publications Karrie Kolesar. The group learned about DSC’s worldwide conservation efforts, both on the ground and through their membership chapters. Ms. Kolesar provided valuable insight into navigating today’s social media climate and how to combat negative impressions of wildlife conservation efforts related to hunting.
Next, the class met with Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD), where Sarah Grella (South Texas Bobwhite Brigade volunteer!) and her colleagues outlined their cutting-edge water conservation efforts and the unique challenges they face based on the region’s water resources and urban sprawl. Their office building and campus served as an excellent example for water-conscious building materials, landscaping, and design.
Friday’s meetings culminated with Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA), where the class met with the Executive Director of Communications Services, Ellen Brisendine, and Executive Director of Events and Education, Stacy Fox. They discussed the importance of effective advocacy for any cause. Mrs. Brisendine shared tips on professionalism, targeting your audience, and presenting your message as effectively as possible.
On Saturday, our W.I.L.D. Class braved the 32-degree, misty weather to volunteer at Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge (FWNC). After learning about FWNC operations and potential internship opportunities, the class helped Daniel Price, Natural Resource Manager (and previous Texas Brigades volunteer), prepare a section of the refuge for a prescribed burn.
Our last stop was Dixon Water Foundation near Decatur, TX, where the class was honored to meet with previous Board Chair Mr. Clint Josey and Secretary/Treasurer Melissa Bookhout. A lively discussion and explanation of holistic land management took place before heading out to view the quality of the transformed land and cattle.
The remainder of Session III was spent working on W.I.L.D. Class VII’s individual and group projects. W.I.L.D. Session IV will be held in Austin, TX in March, where our class will solidify plans for this fall’s CYCL event…stay tuned for updates!
Program Manager, Texas Brigades