The Native American Fish & Wildlife Society Named Field Liaisons for America the Beautiful Challenge NFWF Funding Program

Top from Left to Right: Julie Thorstenson, PhD. – Executive Director of NAFWS, Robert Romero- Deputy Executive Director of NAFWS, Rachel Dawson- Program Director of NFWF, Blake Gardiner- Regional Program Coordinator of NFWF. Bottom from Left to Right: Laurel James, PhD. (c)- Director of Programs of NAFWS, Rosie Sanchez- Public Information Officer of NAFWS, Sydney Godbey- Program Manager of NFWF

Northglenn, CO (March 20, 2023) On March 1, 2023, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) released the official Request for Proposals (RFP) for the second year of the America the Beautiful Challenge (ATBC) funding program. The program is dedicated to funding landscape-scale conservation and restoration projects that implement existing conservation plans across the nation.

The Native American Fish and Wildlife Society (NAFWS) has been selected to be the 2023 grant cycle field liaisons for Tribal outreach and engagement. 


 “NAFWS is excited to build upon the technical assistance we provided Tribal nations in the first round of ATBC and hopes to see an increase in Tribal projects funded. ATBC provides a much-needed stream of funding to assist Tribes in the conservation, protection and enhancement of their fish and wildlife resources,” says Julie Thorstenson, PhD. Executive Director of the Native American Fish and Wildlife Society.  


NAFWS will conduct direct outreach, host conversations with potential applicants to develop project ideas, troubleshoot with previous applicants as they consider reapplying for funding, and be a resource hub for Tribes in the process of applying for funding. NAFWS will also host virtual and in-person peer-to-peer learning event(s) throughout the 2023 grant cycle.  


Fourteen Tribal Nations were awarded funding through the ATBC grant cycle in 2022. NFWF expects to award at least ten percent of ATBC funding to Tribal Nations. Competitive grants will conserve, restore, and connect habitats for wildlife while improving community resilience and access to nature.  


Additional information about the program as well as the RFP can be found on the NFWF America the Beautiful Challenge webpage here 


NAFWS will be hosting a webinar series to help navigate applying for the ATBC grant. Register for the first webinar of the series on March 30, 2023, at 2- 3 PM MST here 


Download NAFWS ATBC Press Release


The Native American Fish and Wildlife Society (NAFWS) is a non-profit 501(c)3 intertribal organization founded in 1983 by a group of Tribal fish and wildlife professionals to “assist Native American and Alaska Native Tribes with the conservation, protection, and enhancement of their fish and wildlife resources.” NAFWS is the only national Tribal organization with a specific focus on Tribal fish and wildlife resources. Membership includes 227 Support Member Tribes in 7 regions. NAFWS hosts conferences, trainings, webinars, youth education and provides technical assistance to the 574 federally recognized Tribes in the US and fish and wildlife professionals working in Indian Country. For more information, please visit


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The Native American Fish and Wildlife Society would like to thank those organizations that provided us with support over the years. With them we grew an effective national communications network for the exchange of information and management techniques related to self-determined tribal fish and wildlife management.

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