Sportsmen For Fish and Wildlife (SFW) has taken another step forward in building out their efforts to have a major presence in wildlife conservation and hunting and fishing preservation in the Western part of North America by hiring Ryan Benson as a new senior business development and legal consultant. The opportunity to hire Ryan came from a tremendous six figure donation from one of SFW Founding Board members, whose desire to see SFW continue to grow is yet another example of SFW members stepping up when needed.
Ryan first and foremost is an avid and passionate hunter who grew up in humble circumstances and spent his days hunting on the West’s general season public land units. On a recent day off from his patent law firm duties, Ryan came to his job interview with muddy boots having just finished a coyote hunt with his young sons.
Mr. Benson graduated with a degree in Political Science from BYU, and then worked for a year as the legislative coordinator for the Utah Attorney General’s office. He then worked in Washington DC with the staff of US Senator Robert Bennett’s Natural Resource committee, and went from there to Boston, where he earned his Law Degree from Harvard University.
Since graduating from Harvard, Ryan has built a very successful law practice in Patent Law and also business mergers and acquisitions throughout the western US. His most recent deal was the patent work and closing of the sale of Barnes Bullets to the Freedom Group.
Byron Bateman, SFW President said, “Ryan’s willingness to leave a very successful business practice and give up millions in current and future earnings to work for conservation speaks volumes about his passion and commitment to protecting the future of hunting for current and future generations.” Ryan Foutz, SFW VP of Marketing said, “SFW has been understaffed and has relentlessly focused our resources on restoring habitats, and producing abundant game herds. Benson will bring the ability to polish and perfect the way SFW does business and communicate our conservation mission to decision makers, sponsors, our members and help us better connect with the new internet generation.”
Don Peay Founder of SFW said, “we have searched from Alaska to Arizona to find a person with Ryan’s passion for conservation and hunting, and a very unique skill set to take SFW to the next level.” Peay also said, “there is no question in my mind Benson will help complete SFW’s western North American Conservation infrastructure, and in future years will lead SFW into the international conservation arena. Ryan is a global thinker, and even at a young age, from his Harvard law contacts he has a rolodex full of top business leaders around the world.”
Ryan’s first duty will be to lead the SFW effort to have a legal and political solution, if Federal Judges rule the wrong way, and place wolves back on the Endangered Species List. The SFW Board has determined the wildlife herds of the west have suffered enough, if the courts can’t figure it out soon, Congress needs to step in and solve this problem by restoring the states’ rights to protect our ungulate herds and the multi-billion dollar hunting industry that is suffering tremendous long term damage by un-managed wolf populations in the west and the upper mid west regions. Benson will also be tasked to help in SFW fundraising, public relations, legislative and legal considerations and organizational structure matters.
Mr. Benson said, “the SFW members, sponsors and staff have laid a tremendous foundation for land and wildlife conservation in Utah, the Western States and Alaska. I am honored to join an outstanding SFW team which is driven by measureable results of thousands of restored habitat acres and substantial increases in animal numbers. Hunting is a passion for me and my young children. It is worth fighting for our way of life and our heritage in the West.”
Randy and Coni Brooks, owners of Barnes Bullets, who stepped up with the most generous contribution to SFW to allow SFW to hire such a high quality person said, “Ryan is the perfect fit for SFW. He is polished, passionate about hunting and conservation, and comes across in a very unassuming manner. However, we saw first-hand, when it comes to crunch time, just like SFW he is willing to step into a hornet’s nest and deliver a victory for his team.”
SFW is one of the most effective conservation sportsmen groups in the Western united states and focuses on land and wildlife conservation results for elk, mule deer, bison, moose, wild sheep, mountain goats, antelope, chukar, wild turkey and fisheries including efforts to restore abundant Halibut and Salmon fisheries in Alaska. SFW has state run chapters in AZ, NM, UT, WY, ID, NV, and Alaska, with sportsmen from Colorado, Montana, Nebraska and other states and provinces requesting help in building the wildly successful SFW model in their states soon.