The Wilderness Society

Uniting people to protect America's wild places

aka TWS   |   Washington, DC   |  http://www.wilderness.org

Mission

The Wilderness Society's mission is uniting people to protect America’s wild places. We focus on making America's vast and unique system of public lands part of the solution to the most pressing challenges of our day: climate change, unprecedented species extinction and inequitable access to nature's benefits. We work with partners and support our staff to find common ground around enduring conservation solutions. To these solutions we bring long-term investment in community-led conservation, deep expertise in public lands policy and management, and the ability to catalyze inclusive local-national advocacy networks that share voice, power and impact.

Ruling year info

1942

President & CEO

Mr. Jamie Williams

Main address

1801 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Suite 200

Washington, DC 20006 USA

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EIN

53-0167933

NTEE code info

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (C01)

Land Resources Conservation (C34)

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (C05)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Climate Solutions on U.S. Public Lands

Our Climate Solutions program leverages the potential of U.S. public lands to help solve the climate crisis, and doing so in a way that equitably benefits all people. Fossil fuel extraction on U.S. public lands contributes 24% of U.S. annual greenhouse gas emissions (more than all but five countries!) To reduce these climate emissions to net zero by 2030, we work with communities and public officials to shift the priority of U.S. public land managers from resource extraction to protecting the climate and biodiversity. The U.S. can and must reduce carbon emissions by phasing out coal, oil and gas on federal public lands; 2) increase renewable energy development responsibly; 3) expand carbon capture by protecting old growth forests; 4) mitigate negative impacts on communities dependent on fossil fuel industry.

Population(s) Served
Age groups
Work status and occupations
Ethnic and racial groups
Economically disadvantaged people
Sexual identity

We are catalyzing the creation of a network of resilient landscapes that will sustain human well-being and ecological integrity in the face of the climate and extinction crises--and provide more equitable access to nature and its benefits for all people. Using science, traditional knowledge and long-term partnerships, we assist communities in our priority landscapes to create landscape conservation plans that leverage their strengths and meet their needs to protect their health, clean water, clean air and expand access to nature for all; while conserving habitat for wildlife and bolstering the communities' resilience in the face of a changing climate. Working with many other groups, private landowners, and government at all level we aim to conserve and connect large landscapes (e.g., one-10 million acres) that will allow species to migrate in order to adapt to climate change.

Population(s) Served
Age groups
Work status and occupations
Ethnic and racial groups
Economically disadvantaged people
Sexual identity

Historically, the conservation movement in the U.S. has been dominated by people of European-American descent. We recognize the moral (and practical) imperative of supporting the participation of people of all identities in decision-making and advocacy around addressing the climate and extinction crises, the use and management of public lands and connection to nature. To that end, in all of our work, we aim to advocate for solutions that value and protect the lands, cultures, traditional knowledge, interests and concerns of Black peoples, Indigenous peoples, and people of color to support the health and well-being of these communities and promote the healing of historic relationships to nature and place.

Population(s) Served
Ethnic and racial groups
Age groups
Women and girls
LGBTQ people
Men and boys

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Wildlands Designations
- Maximize use of Executive authority under Antiquities Act to protect 3 million acres of landscape scale National Monuments
- Secure enduring conservation management of 6 million acres of public lands via land use plans
- Secure 1 million acres of wilderness and other legislative protections in priority landscapes.
Guided Energy
- Create new paradigm for energy development on public lands that includes new policy directives and place-based approaches that require agencies to manage for enduring conservation in conjunction with development
- Protect 20 million acres of public land by guiding energy development away from high value wildlands
- Facilitate renewable energy siting and development on appropriate federal lands to move toward outcome of 20,000 MW of renewable energy developed on public lands by 2020
National Constituency Building
- Connect 13 million Americans to the land through developing strategic national partnerships with experiential providers, corporations, diverse and youth organizations, and other strategic political partners, and through digital outreach, membership recruitment and marketing. Convert these people into active supporters of wild places through advocacy, philanthropy, online and marketing efforts, and TWS membership

Wildlands Designations
Develop new, transformative legislative and administrative strategies at national level that will serve as a catalyst for scaling up permanent protection efforts; Complete ongoing congressional designation and executive designations such as use of the Antiquities Act to permanently protect 6 -11 million acres; Pursue administrative protections such as recommended wilderness on Forest Service lands, WSAs on BLM or additions to wildlife refuges for 5-6 million acres, which will serve as areas for potential future permanent designation; Defend the current system against ongoing threats that would degrade the core upon which we are building, especially the unprecedented legislative attack on our public lands; Develop and implement landscape-level approaches to wildland conservation in selected landscapes that address climate change adaptation; Increase support and leverage for wildands designations by promoting policies on recreation al use and enjoyment of wildands
Guided Energy
Guide energy development away from wildlands using Smart from the Start planning, with a focus on ensuring the successful adoption of the Solar PEIS as a precedent for the siting of all major energy sources on public lands; Develop and implement a transformative approach to leveraging conservation benefits and mitigation requirements at both the project level and the agency planning level;  Integrate our energy work into our land conservation work so that we are aligned culturally and across our priority landscape; Use our proactive energy work to broaden the public’s understanding of TWS’s relevance to solving America’s biggest problems
National Constituency Building
Mobilize emerging and influential constituencies to change the national conservation dynamic; Mobilize on-the-ground communities of landscape conservation supporters that drive political power and on the ground support to advance local protection efforts; Build the Wilderness brand, extending our reach through strategic partnerships and celebrity voices, while optimizing digital channels to activate strong revenue streams and membership; Drive a national campaign that positions wilderness and wild lands more broadly relative to the needs of the broader audiences – connecting on “their terms” versus “our terms”

Wildlands Designations - TWS has been at the forefront of major public lands issues, utilizing its strength of sound research, focused and strategic advocacy and an ability to drive strong and diverse on-the-ground partnerships to successfully drive permanent protections.
Guided Energy - TWS brings the highest level of expertise to driving energy development away from core wildlands
National Constituency Building - TWS pursues a compelling mission coupled with the ability to reach and activate
National and local audiences to protect wild places

Leveraging the Administration’s focus on large landscape protection, such as in our newest national monuments: Rio Grande del Norte National Monument, New Mexico San Juan Islands National Monument, Washington State - See more at: http://wilderness.org/article/win-wildlands-president-obama-designates-five-new-national-monuments#sthash.3VXtb7zI.dpuf
Increasing local interest and collaboration around landscape conservation, such as for Browns Canyon in Colorado. See more at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PweDUWiDU6U
Realizing heightened public awareness of energy issues and preference for finding long term renewable energy solutions as a means to further build and engage our constituency, such as in the Public Lands Renewable Energy Development Act. See more at http://wilderness.org/article/PLREDA

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
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  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

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Financials

The Wilderness Society
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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The Wilderness Society

Board of directors
as of 8/2/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ms. Crandall Bowles

Molly McUsic

The Wyss Foundation

William Cronon

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Marcia Kunstel

Hansjorg Wyss

Synthes, Inc.

David Bonderman

Texas Pacific Group

Brenda Davis

Johnson & Johnson (retired)

Thomas Barron

Crandall Bowles

Springs Close Foundation, Inc.

Christopher Elliman

Open Space Institute

David Field

Entercom Communications Corp.

Caroline Getty

Reginald Hagood

Student Conservation Association

Kevin Luzak

ArcherPoint

Michael Mantell

Resources Law Group, LLP

Jaime Pinkham

Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission

Rebecca Rom

Faegre & Benson

Theodore Roosevelt

Barclay's Capital Corporation

Cathy Stone

Environmental Services, Boston Mayor's Office

Carl Ferenbach

Berkshire Partners

David Churchill

Morrison & Foerster

Gregg Sherrill

Tenneco

Jennifer Speers

Palladium Foundation

Juan Martinez

C&NN

Martinique Grigg

Norm Christensen

Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University

Jacqueline Mars

Mars Inc. (retired)

Rue Mapp

Outdoor Afro

Dave Matthews

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 04/14/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability