Lauren Wittorp has resigned her post without explanation. She is the fourth ED to resign from MRF since its inception. No word yet if the Foundation will dissolve or re-group. We wish her well.
Her letter to members posted on MRF Facebook page:
Dear Madison River Foundation Members,
It has always been about the fishery, the most renowned fishery in the world. I know each and every member passionately cares about this fishery. Because of all of you, in the last couple years we have accomplished incredible projects to preserve, protect, and enhance the Madison River…. From creating new public land, to fish rescues and macroinvertebrates studies, to fighting for and achieving permanent reauthorization of LWCF and working towards Wild and Scenic Rivers designation, to community outreach events and youth events, we’ve accomplished so much!
We partnered to create five new miles of access that will forever allow anglers to enjoy more of the Madison River. We announced and celebrated this achievement with all of our members and public lands advocate Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia, at our annual Catch the Hatch Fundraiser.
In a few short weeks, the foundation will break ground on its first riparian restoration project at the Three Dollar Bridge Access Site, which came together because of hundreds of donations from all of you to restore this iconic place. Along with this, we have developed a Madison River Riparian Restoration Masterplan to accomplish 20 more riparian restoration projects in the years to come.
As for the Madison River Recreation Management Plan, I am confident — because of the immense love for the Madison River and dedication to the protection of this blue ribbon fishery — a solution will be found that will protect this fishery for generations to come. I hope civil discourse can be found. After meeting with diverse stakeholders I am submitting a comprehensive document of those discussions to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks and the Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission.
With that, I say goodbye. Thank you for the opportunity to work with all of you, your support of the foundation and your dedication to the Madison River.
I hope to see you on the river soon.
Lauren Wittorp, Executive Director
MRF will not dissolve, despite Randy Brown’s hopes. The Foundation has a history of successful Madison River stewardship. Ok, perhaps an occasional hiccup! Perhaps some normal growing pains. But many solid achievements! And many hours of service donated by capable and dedicated members!
Lauren Wittorp has been a PR disaster for MRF and its a positive move for her to be removed so quickly!
My wife and I are lifetime members of the Foundation. We live in Livingston and have no axe to grind about rich Madison land owners.
We have not been involved with MRF during Lauren’s tenure, but we look forward to actively participating in the Foundation’s activities going forward.