Who We Are
Welcome to our website! We’re glad you decided to stop by and learn more about the Tennessee Wildlife Federation (TWF). We encourage you get in touch with us if you have questions that aren’t answered on these pages. Just click our Contact page for several easy ways to give us a shout.
So, what is TWF? Simply put, we are one of the largest and oldest organizations in Tennessee dedicated to the conservation of the state’s wildlife and natural resources through stewardship, youth engagement, and public policy. We bring together and represent the varied interests of people who enjoy the great outdoors. We are a 501-(c)(3) non-profit with a board of directors and a full-time staff headquartered in Nashville. Click the following links to learn more about our personnel.
Here are some quick facts about TWF:
- TWF was founded as the Tennessee Conservation League by outdoor writers and community leaders in 1946. Read about our history HERE.
- TWF brings together and represents the various interests of sportsmen, outdoor enthusiasts, and affiliate organizations committed to conserving our state’s wildlife and natural resources.
- TWF’s donors, supporters, and volunteers comprise a diverse group of individuals — hunters, anglers, bird watchers, hikers, gardeners, and people who just enjoy the great outdoors. The groups are united by a common cause: concern and compassion for wildlife and Tennessee’s natural resources.
- TWF monitors and recommends wildlife, water, and land policies; aligns the interests of various groups including supporters, businesses, organizations, and legislators; and mobilizes public response and support on issues and policies affecting Tennessee’s wildlife and habitat. We serve as the voice of reason and a statewide advocate for the conservation, sound management, and sustainable use of Tennessee’s wildlife and natural resources.
Why we’re here
This 6-minute retrospective is a beautifully written and filmed look at TWF’s role in helping to restore and conserve Tennessee’s amazing natural resources over the past 68 years.
WHAT WE DO
The Tennessee Wildlife Federation fulfills its mission through a number of different methods and programs. Engaging youth in outdoors activities is very important to us, and through the Tennessee Scholastic Clay Target Program, the TWF Youth Hunts program, and other outreach, we engage kids in their natural surroundings and help them develop into adults who know and care about the world outside of the city limits.
Our Hunters for the Hungry program combines wildlife management with charitable giving in a unique and meaningful way by teaming whitetail deer hunters, local wild game processors, and area food banks and soup kitchens to feed thousands of Tennesseans in need. Since the program was launched in 1998, Hunters for the Hungry has accounted for nearly 4 million meals!
Each of these initiatives has become a gold standard for many non-profit organizations across the country. To learn more about these programs, follow the individual links above or go to our Programs page by clicking here.
TWF also has a very strong advocacy component. Since our beginnings, we have served as a voice of reason on behalf of Tennessee’s wildlife, outdoor enthusiasts, and natural resources. We closely monitor state and federal legislation and make sure the wishes of sportsmen and women, birders, hikers, boaters, campers, and other citizens who enjoy Tennessee’s great outdoors are represented fairly in government.
In addition to youth engagement and public policy, TWF addresses habitat stewardship with a variety of partner organizations — like the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, Ducks Unlimited, the National Wildlife Federation, the National Wild Turkey Federation, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and more — to conserve and improve Tennessee’s natural resources and protect our state’s rich heritage of hunting and fishing. We also administer the process of restoring wetlands damaged during commercial development through the Tennessee Mitigation Fund.
“To lead the conservation, sound management, and wise use of Tennessee’s wildlife and great outdoors.”
TWF and TWRA: What’s the difference?
Tennessee Wildlife Federation (TWF) and Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) are two entirely separate and distinct organizations. TWRA is a state fish and wildlife agency directed by a 13-member commission. TWF is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization led by a board of directors and is not a state agency. In 1974, TWF was instrumental in reorganizing the Game and Fish Commission into what we know today as TWRA. The two organizations often work together in support of Tennessee’s wildlife and natural resources.