There are a lot of flyfishing companies out there, but few with the corduroy pant-fuelled revenue stream of Orvis. There are also few that funnel us much back into the fishing community through conservation efforts. In addition to giving 5 percent of its pre-tax profits to a long list of vital imperatives over the years, the company recently released its 2014 lineup of awarded cash grants—to match its customers’ contributions up to equal amounts.
So far, the list includes:
Trout Unlimited, to continue its multi-year collaboration on the Orvis/Trout Unlimited 1,000 Miles Campaign, which will reconnect 1,000 miles of stream passage for fish in watersheds throughout the United States over ten years. This project will open up waterways through the repair, modification and/or removal of culverts and other obstructions. With an Orvis matching grant up to $90,000, the campaign plans to raise $180,000 or more in 2014.
The Chesapeake Bay Foundation campaign will benefit the Oyster Restoration Program, the goal of which is the restoration of native oyster reefs in Maryland and Virginia, and the subsequent improvement of water quality and fishing habitat in Chesapeake Bay. Orvis’ $30,000 matching grant aims to raise a total of $60,000 for this program in 2014.
Rare, for its Fish Forever program in Belize, empowering local Belizean communities to sustainably manage their fisheries, thereby increasing food security, conserving important marine habitats and species, safeguarding local jobs and creating coastal climate resilience.
And in the UK: a non-matching grant to the Salmon & Trout Association to conduct essential water-quality research on the River Itchen, which will influence the preservation of Britain’s fabled chalk streams for generations to come.
“In all, Orvis will raise and contribute more than $1 million to conservation, community and canine initiatives in 2014. Over the past 20 years, Orvis has generated in excess of $15 million for a wide variety of conservation programs.”
Tom Bie is the founder, editor, and publisher of The Drake. He started the magazine in 1998 as an annual newsprint publication based in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. He then moved it to Steamboat, Colorado (1999), Boulder, Colorado (2001), and San Clemente, California (2004), as he took jobs as managing editor at Paddler, Senior Editor at Skiing, and Editor-in-Chief at Powder, respectively. Tom and The Drake are now both based in Denver, Colorado, where The Drake is finally all grows up(Swingers, 1996) to a quarterly magazine.