NDA Awarded $200,000 Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund Grant for Public Land Initiative

June 13, 2024 By: NDA Staff

The National Deer Association (NDA) is pleased to announce a $200,000 grant from the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund to continue NDA’s Public Lands Initiative, which achieved habitat and access improvements on over 430,000 acres of public hunting land in 17 states last year alone.

The landmark grant, enabled by noted conservationist and Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris and generous Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s customers who contribute to the Outdoor Fund, will expand NDA’s nationwide initiative “Improving Access, Habitat and Deer Hunting on Public Lands.” This unique NDA project is continuing to improve habitat, wildlife populations and hunting opportunities on public lands through the expertise of NDA and its partners, including the U.S.D.A. Forest Service (USFS), state wildlife agencies and NDA members and volunteers.

This forest management work on Daniel Boone National Forest in Kentucky is part of NDA’s Public Land Initiative and is restoring sunlight to overcrowded, shaded forests. This retains desirable trees while creating early successional plant growth critical to deer and a diversity of non-game wildlife species.

“Simply put, we wouldn’t be as close to our one-million-acre public land habitat improvement goal if it wasn’t for the support of Johnny Morris and the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund,” said Nick Pinizzotto, President and CEO of NDA. “NDA is proud to be one of the many great conservation organizations and projects the Outdoor Fund supports.”

Like the NDA, the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. The Outdoor Fund encourages more than 200 million Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s customers to round up purchases at the register and online, to support conservation partners and projects that advocate for sportsmen’s rights, connect new audiences to the outdoors, and protect and conserve wildlife habitat across North America, a mission that closely aligns with the NDA’s. 

“We are honored to stand alongside our customers and in support of these quality projects that will improve the quality of habitat and help ensure access for sportsmen and women across North America,” said Johnny Morris, noted conservationist and founder of Bass Pro Shops. “It makes us all very proud to support the National Deer Association’s efforts to improve habitat, wildlife populations and hunting opportunities on public lands and help with access for future generations.”

These white oak seedlings are growing in a state nursery in Kentucky. They came from acorns collected on Daniel Boone National Forest at NDA’s 2023 Working for Wildilfe workday. They’ll be used to reforest hardwood stands on public land.

Support from the Outdoor Fund allows the NDA to accelerate important work to address access and forest health issues across North America. To-date and along with valuable conservation partners like the Outdoor Fund, NDA has invested $4.9 million since the initiative launched in 2021. The total impact is approaching 750,000 acres, putting the organization above pace to reach its target goal of 1 million acres by 2026. 

About the National Deer Association

Formally launched on November 10, 2020, the National Deer Association is a non-profit deer conservation group that leads efforts to ensure the future of wild deer, wildlife habitat and hunting. Formed by combining the strengths of two long-serving, successful organizations, the National Deer Association has a combined 38 years of action that has changed deer management for the betterment of hunting and protected North America’s most vital and admired game species for future generations. Visit DeerAssociation.com or follow @deerassociation on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook and YouTube.

About Bass Pro Shops

Bass Pro Shops is North America’s premier outdoor and conservation company. Founded in 1972 when avid young angler Johnny Morris began selling tackle out of his father’s liquor store in Springfield, Missouri, today the company provides customers with unmatched offerings spanning premier destination retail, outdoor equipment manufacturing, world-class resort destinations and more. In 2017, Bass Pro Shops united with Cabela’s to create a “best-of-the-best” experience with superior products, dynamic locations and outstanding customer service. Bass Pro Shops also operates White River Marine Group, offering an unsurpassed collection of industry-leading boat brands, and Big Cedar Lodge, America’s Premier Wilderness Resort. Under the visionary conservation leadership of Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops is a national leader in conservation and introducing families to the outdoors and has been named by Forbes as “one of America’s Best Employers.”