BOZEMAN, Mont. (December 2020) – Simms Fishing Products announced today a multi-year partnership with the conservation group and non-profit Trout Unlimited (TU). The partnership will focus on TU’s Home Rivers Initiative, a multi-regional program that places full-time TU staff member(s) in a watershed to live and work with, and within the local community in order to bring the full range of TU’s scientific, policy, education, and legal expertise to bear on watershed-scale restoration and protection. Over the next three years, Simms is committed to a quarter-million-dollar investment in the Home Rivers partnership with Trout Unlimited in an effort to protect Montana’s Gallatin River.
“Three cheers to SIMMS for stepping up to help Trout Unlimited protect and recover the river that defines their community. Restoration of the Gallatin and its tributaries will provide high-paying, family-wage jobs in rural communities across Montana. It will also help improve an already great fishery in a state that many consider fishing Mecca,” said Chris Wood, President, and CEO of Trout Unlimited. “We look forward to working with SIMMS and their employees to bring people together to recover the Gallatin.”
Beginning in January of 2021, SIMMS and TU will launch a dedicated restoration initiative to improve trout populations and fishing opportunities in the Gallatin River. The initial efforts aim to protect instream flows and essential water supplies, restore and reconnect critical fish habitat, and engage local communities in citizen science and angler stewardship programs. Over the next three years, a dedicated Gallatin River Project Manager and Outreach Coordinator will work in tandem with local conservation organizations to design and implement on-the-ground habitat restoration projects in critical tributaries in the Upper and Lower Gallatin River watershed. In addition, this Coordinator will work with partners to improve river access sites, engage local students and SIMMS employees in citizen science projects and volunteer efforts, and work with growing municipalities to restore and protect cold, clean water sources to ensure healthy fisheries for generations to come.
“With this support of TU’s Home Rivers Initiative we are committing to a legacy of stewardship for one of our most important Montana rivers,” stated K. C. Walsh, Executive Chair. “Suburban development, irrigation demands, and angling pressure will continue to challenge the Gallatin River, and Simms is proud to partner in this effort with TU to drive conservation and restoration efforts.”
The Trout Unlimited-Simms Gallatin River HRI will capitalize on existing powerful partnerships with the Madison-Gallatin TU Chapter, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, the Gallatin River Task Force, the Gallatin Watershed Council, and Custer-Gallatin National Forest to increase our collective capacity to do effective, watershed-scale conservation work.
“We’re thrilled to join forces with TU and support the Home Rivers Initiative here in the Gallatin Valley,” said Casey Sheahan, CEO. “The Gallatin River gives so much to our local community and is such an important fishery, it feels great to form such a meaningful and impactful long-term partnership with TU to ensure a healthy fishery for years to come.”
To learn more about the partnership and how to get involved, please visit the donation page here: https://gifts.tu.org/gallatinHRI