Agency RSS

Gov. Daugaard Challenges Board To Raise Habitat Conservation Funds, Pledges To Match Fundraising Goal



            Office of Gov. Dennis Daugaard

500 E. Capitol Ave.

Pierre, S.D. 57501

(605) 773-3212





FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Contact: Wayne Winter at Wayne.Winter@state.sd.us



Gov. Daugaard Challenges Board To Raise Habitat Conservation Funds; Pledges To Match Fundraising Goal


PIERRE, S.D. – Gov. Dennis Daugaard issued a challenge last week to the South Dakota Habitat Conservation Board to raise $1 million more in private money for habitat conservation. The Governor pledged to match the donations for the South Dakota Habitat Conservation Fund with $1 million in state funds, if the group can meet the goal.


“Habitat conservation is important in South Dakota. Through these efforts, we conserve our land, enhance our wildlife population and preserve our outdoor traditions,” Gov. Daugaard said. “With privately raised funds, the $1 million dollar challenge grant and the funding provided by the Legislature last legislative session, we can begin a new legacy of habitat conservation in South Dakota.”


The South Dakota Habitat Conservation Fund was established in November 2014 as a result of the Governor’s Pheasant Habitat Work Group. The Fund provides a permanent funding source for wildlife habitat work in South Dakota. Private donors have contributed a total of $425,000 to the Fund in the last year and state government has dedicated $350,000. The Board would need to raise an additional $1 million in private donations to meet the Governor’s challenge.

“We are grateful for Gov. Daugaard’s offer to match donations to the habitat conservation fund,” stated Jeff Scherschligt, board president. “We intend to do all we can to rise to this challenge and secure $1 million in private donations to meet the goal.”

The Governor made the announcement at the South Dakota Habitat Conservation Board’s first meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 26. Gov. Daugaard recently established the Board to raise money for habitat conservation and administer habitat conservation programs. The 15 board members met in Pierre to approve bylaws, elect officers, assign term limits and discuss communications, financial reporting and the facilitation of two grant programs.


The Board will use Fund dollars to award grants to eligible non-profit organizations that improve or create wildlife habitat in South Dakota. The Board has established two grant categories: small grants from $5,000 and $40,000 and large grants from $40,000 to $100,000.


Requests for project proposals will be announced at the end of September and applications will be accepted for consideration from Oct. 1 to Nov. 30, 2015.


The Board will hold its next meeting in late October to discuss communications and fundraising strategies. An additional meeting will be held in December to vote on project proposals for funding. Grant awards will be announced by Dec. 31, 2015.


Individuals serving on the new South Dakota Habitat and Conservation Board include:


  • Jeff Scherschligt of Sioux Falls, president
  • Bob Roe of Brookings, vice president
  • Steve Halverson of Pierre, secretary/treasurer
  • Doug Balvin of Huron
  • Tony Bour of Harrisburg
  • Dr. Barry Dunn of Brookings
  • Barry Grossenburg of Winner
  • Christine Hamilton of Kimball
  • Tim Kessler of Aberdeen
  • Scott Lawrence of Sioux Falls
  • Les Lindskov of Isabel
  • Delon Mork of Madison
  • Dick Muth of Mitchell
  • Larry Ness of Yankton
  • Jan Nicolay of Chester
  • Hunter Roberts, Governor’s Office, ex-officio member
  • John Cooper, GFP commissioner, ex-officio member