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November 09, 2009

Quail Unlimited Implodes

By Phil Bourjaily

Apparently the culture of greed and reckless mismanagement that brought us the Enron scandal and the Wall Street mess exists in the conservation community as well. Accusations and counter-accusations are still flying and the full truth has yet to come out, but it would seem that the recent implosion of Quail Unlimited is another version of the same sad, familiar story of people at the top wrecking an organization for personal gain. In this case, it was an organization built largely by the passion and hard work of grassroots volunteers who thought they were working for wildlife, which makes this story from Covey Rise especially galling:

Quail Unlimited in turmoil - faces rocky road
The nation's oldest and largest quail organization has found itself in turmoil, facing at least one federal investigation, and no on-site senior management left to run Quail Unlimited.

The last two chief executives are gone, including the organization's co-founder, Rocky Evans. Evans resigned last March amid growing pressure on the organization's finances.

Comments (29)

Top Rated
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from Mr. Creosote wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

QU was the very first conservation group I ever joined and became an active member of, but any current or former QU member knew this was coming.

In my region QU stopped being a viable organization years ago when it became apparent that the only thing national was really interested in was seeing how much money it could squeeze out of the state and local chapters.

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from Big O wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

+1 for you Mr Creosote. sad to say but this is why my memberships have "thinned out" over the years including QU.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from matouse3 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Very sad

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Garrick Otero wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Sad. Damned sad. I hope the members of local chapters can find a way to keep up their good work.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

our chapter is still going but for how long we don't know. we just hope to ride out the storm because we feel our goals are too important.
pray for ft. hood!

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from 86Ram wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

This sucks .. It pains me to see organizations that start with the best of intentions and actually accomplish alot for the well being of wildlife and those who enjoy wildlife in many ways.

To fall to piss poor management, greed and to misappropriate donated funds and membership dues in that manor.

Mr. Alderman was just in his actions and should have been hailed a hero or saving grace rather than fired because of his actions. He did the right thing.

What next? Are other organizations gonna come to Jesus with their own scandals? Are we going to lose more grassroots organizations in this manner?

This a sad way for them (QU) to go out in a wimper not a bang!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

What can I say, it's like trying to find the last Boy Scout provided there is still one exists among us?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from salmonquest wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Grassroots movements ruined by greed. This gives a black eye to many conservation movements and hopefully this isn't the model they will follow. Those that profited should be forced to plant 100's of acres with native shrubs and grasses....by hand until they worked off their ill begotten gains.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from deadeye wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It saddens me greatly to think of all the disillusioned quail out there right now. How could this happen?
Seriously, if it is true that they got greedy, those defrauded should be allowed to determine their punishment.
As with the Enron croud. Planting shrubbery? Me doth think not! Stake them out for the ants!!! How dare they get greedy with volunteer labor. And don't let their families keep the ill-gotten gains either!!! Someone should be held accountable.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from TakeAKidHunting wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Sad story. We need all the conservationists we can get. Groups like the NWTF and DU deserve our support because they do so much hands-on conservaton work.

There's a different version of the story in the Augusta paper.

http://chronicle.augusta.com/stories/2009/11/08/pav_554902.shtml

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from birdman69 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Someone already said it -- don't throw the good out with the bad on a deal like this. Most conservation organizations deliver exactly what they say they will. Committed folks that want to do good things for upland birds should find another place to roost, and keep on doing good things. Look at the Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever models, where local chapters control the funds and put them to work for habitat and youth projects. Check out the websites, get some information, ask hard questions and get on with doing something good for wildlife.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from quailhunter wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Quail and upland birds need all the help they can get, from reputable organizations. I concur with the birdman - geez, don't ride out the storm with a sinking ship. Go to a good organization like QF. I've been a member for 4 years, before that, a QU member and chapter officer. This is a no-brainer folks! QF chapters keep all their dollars - and we get to spend them on projects we decide on - and kids programs. QU folks are still spitting out lies about what Quail Forever is and does... it's a crying shame. If you're with a chapter, do your homework - invite someone from a QF chapter to come and talk to you, as I understand, their staff are not allowed to approach QU chapters until the QU folks call them in.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from QUWF wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

The driving force behind a great organization is to never forget the passion and principles we all support in habitat work for the wild quail and all upland game. As the Phoenix rose from the ashes, so does the Quail and Upland Wildlife Federation, Inc (Tm). Solely dedicated to the chapters and members who have worked so very hard to put habitat work on the ground, and are doing it well.

An idea whose strength will be represented by a new organization but this time, built with transparancy, controls and ethics stronger than any before. The chapter and membership system was not broken, it worked, now we leave the issues of self behind and get back to what we all love best, habitat restoration and the wildlife that reward us all. The covey call has begun.

More to come! You heard it here first.

Yours in Conservation, QUWF

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from bobwhite wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Don't condemn the chapters and volunteers of QU. The problems were at the administrative level. Had it not been for the dedication of the volunteers and the incredible projects they implemented at a local level there wouldn't be any QU. QU's reputation is built on the backs of the local volunteers and they are to be commended for their efforts. And no, none of it has gone to waste. The habitat on the ground is still there. My hat is off to all the hard working local volunteers of QU. May they find another vehicle and continue their selfless work for quail and upland wildlife! Kudos to the QU volunteers.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from sgaredneck wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

+1 Mr. Cresote. We agreed to disagree a while back on AR's, but IMHO you are 100% on the money on your analysis of QU. I have to also take issue with other hitherto unnamed 'conservation organizations' that I no longer am on the rolls of, since they too seemed to be much too interested in the money they could squeeze out of my wallet.

All that said, a QU done right would be a real good thing.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Proverbs wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

My circle of hunting buddies left a national elk foundation for similar reasons. When membership swelled in the late 1990s, this foundation's directors and president found themselves awash in membership dues and estate gifts. And the temptations that followed. Too soon it became very political and all about the money and influence. No one from Arizona was in the administrative end of the organization, and it became clear the group wanted our money and support, but had no interest in Arizona habitat or doing anything positive for AZ hunters.

So we left and helped form the Arizona Elk Society, which has stayed on the mission on increasing and improving opportunities for hunters through improving habitat.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Robert Ewing wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

What is supposed to help promote and preserve the land ,the bird , and our right to hunt on them; was presumably raped by greed and politics.
How many of those guns and dollars where lost to political fundraisers?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from eyeswideopen wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

When I first joined (mid-80's)80% of the money raised stayed local. By the late 80's QU National decided it needed an extra 20% cut. Then they needed a new National headquarters paid for by the chapters. I met Rocky Evans at a national convention in the early nineties. I had my suspicions that something wasn't right with the organization and subsequently dropped my membership. I've never joined another wildlife organization since. It's more about money than the quail, ducks, deer, etc.
The local member works his a$$ off, and then the national officers and board get to play for a living.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from birdchaser wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

QUWF is ran by the same bunch of crooks that ran QU before it's demise. They too are all ready begging for money and trying to STEAL 40% off the top from their new chapters. Like mentioned before by Birdman69 and QuailHunter, Check out organizations like Quail Forever that actually let you keep all of your dollars to spend within the local you raised them in. Cash grabbing scams like QUWF give good conservation a black eye.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from coho310 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

We'll miss ya',Quail Unlimited,and us (and the birds) will struggle without you.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from sparrow101 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

birdchaser, You seem to be uninformed, let's see if I can help you a little. QUWF is comprised of chapters that felt QF was not the nest they wanted or needed. Much thought and consideration was given to joining that group but they are not a good fit for our habitat family. With the mess at QU, they were looking to build a new nest in order to keep the covey together doing what we do best - habitat! It is being "run" by a group chapter effort, that means VOLUNTEERS, not one person. As far as the money split, it is like no other. Your slamming comments do no one any good especialy made by one so unimformed as yourself. Our volunteer are amoung the best out there and my hat is off to them...for not giving up on their passion for the bobs.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from eyeswideopen wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Someone has to lobby for the resurrection of the CRP program. 3 million acres came out of CRP this past year. If there is a group paying lobbyists to revive CRP then my hats off to them. CRP did more for all wildlife, not just upland game in the last 30 yrs, than planting 1/4-1/2 acre food plot strips, warm season grass plantings, etc. That was another big game of smoke and mirrors at QU National...money for lobbyists. Without total financial transparency, these types of organizations are just cash cows for the officers and board members.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

maybe instead of having so many organizations fighting for members and money we should all come to gether as 1 organization with the checks and balances to insure that these things are not allowed to happen without it being caught in about 5 minutes and those that try it are held accountable.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from birdchaser wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Sparrow101,
You better have another look at your new QUWTF bylaws, you seem to be the only one who is mis-informed here. My chapter looked at the new group real hard, but the fact that they are taking a percentage of your funds(40%just like good ol' QU) and that fact that they are all ready begging for your dollars before they even get started is a sure sign of bad things to come! Volunteers work their tales off for those dollars. They should be able to keep 100%! As for "being ran by chapters and not just one individual," well the bylaws we read only had one name on the bottom of the last page, and one name and address to send your money too. Good luck to you and your volunteers. I honestly hope you guys don't get ripped off again, but it appears to be inevitable with the route you have decided to take.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from bobwhite wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

My applogies in advance for such a long post. I had to say it.

To those complaining about QU or QUWF raising money to acomplish their mission, without fund raising how do you suppose they are to operate? DU, PF, QF, NWTF, TNC, TU, RGS, RMEF, NRA, ACS, United Way, Salvation Army and the list goes on and on, all do it.

For the most part, with very few exceptions, the people working for conservation organizaitons do so out of a passion for the resource. The positions don't pay all that well for what they are required to do. It is not uncommon for a Regional Director/Biologist, or whatever you want to call them, to work during regular business hours then attend a meeting that evening, because that's when volunteers meet - at night. When all is said and done that so called greedy employee has worked a total of 14 or 16 hours then gets up the next day and does it all over again. Then when the weekend rolls around and you and I are out hunting or fishing they are attending a chapter function. Working 80 to 100 hour weeks is not uncommon. Most salaries range from the mid-twenties to the mid-thirties. 50 weeks a year @ 80 hours/week @ $35K = $8.75/hr.

Alderman was regaining the confidence of the chapters and staff and was righting a number of wrongs within QU, all the while not receiving pay for his service as QU's President. The QU BOD fired Alderman in a split vote because he exposed unethical activity and was forced by law to report it. He was fired from his position with QU for being honest, ethical and moral. There is no possible way that makes him a crook.

QUWF is born of those who are passionate about the resource. QU acheived a lot of good work despite administrative mismanagment because of the good people that worked in the field and the volunteers that believed in the cause. QUWF was formed to continue that good work with many of the same people who made the good things about QU good. There is no possible way they are crooks. They are the good guys here.

The chapter model of QU wasn't broke so why change it. The formula had been successful for 28 years. The by-laws are similar but in one VERY important regard they are different. The organization will be governed by a Board where the majority is elected by the membership. In regards to the money split, a chapter has the opportunity through performance standards to receive as high as a 70/30 split. In addition it has been made explicitly clear that if possible, the by-laws will be changed to allow more chapter money. The new group is dedicated to chapters and providing as much funding as possible.

QUWF is the only organization that gives you a breakdown of exactly how the money will be spent. No other organizaiton provides as much transparancy by itemizing their breakdown.

Now for the QF model where chapters keep 100%. Everyone knows it takes money to operate so if QF allows their chapters to keep 100%, where do they get their money? If they give it all back how does the corporate office make money to operate? Think folks - it has to come from somewhere and the membership money by itself isn't enough after you take out expenses for servicing a membership.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not attacking QF. I'm just saying don't be naive enough to think QF doesn't get their money from somewhere.

Bottom line, all groups get their money from somewhere using their own unique formula. If you believe in their cause, join and support them. Never will everyone be satisfied with how a particular group goes about business.

BTW, that 60/20/20 split that was changed to a 60/40 split was voted on by the membership who attended the National Convention in 1991. It wasn't taken away - members present voted to change the formula.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from twra3206 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

It is sad to seen QU go away but I think it is necessary because so much money from the hard working volunteers was basically stolen. The field staff of QU (ie RDs & National Coordinators) worked their tails off for not much money and I hate to see those guys loose ther jobs. But as a former QU RD I could see the writing on the wall several years ago I just hope our beloved Bobwhite don't get forgotten in all this mess.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tnhntr wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

In response to bobwhite, I would like to say a few things.

Your comments

"QUWF is the only organization that gives you a breakdown of exactly how the money will be spent. No other organizaiton provides as much transparancy by itemizing their breakdown.
Now for the QF model where chapters keep 100%. Everyone knows it takes money to operate so if QF allows their chapters to keep 100%, where do they get their money? If they give it all back how does the corporate office make money to operate? Think folks - it has to come from somewhere and the membership money by itself isn't enough after you take out expenses for servicing a membership.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not attacking QF. I'm just saying don't be naive enough to think QF doesn't get their money from somewhere."

are interesting since it is obvious that you have not talked with anyone in a QF chapter or who works with QF. I am a QF life member and chapter officer and I will be glad to shed some light on the subject. I've got nothing to gain, so I'll shoot you straight.

QF is not perfect, it's made up of people just like every other conservation organization. However, their model makes the most sense of any of the conservation organizations out there. Chapters keep 100% of the funds that they raise. The funds are ran through a cash management system. With this system, chapters have a local checking account that serves as a draft account, and a checking account at PF/QF's corporate bank. This account is specific to the chapter, the money is your money, each chapter has it's own checkbook. We don't have to have approval from anyone other than our chapter officers at meetings to write a check. Chapters receive interest payments quarterly (at competitive rates), and quarterly statements are automatically generated for the chapters and the IRS (the whole reason the cash management system was set up). Your checks have check boxes and a description box in them so that when you write a check, you indicate where the money was spent. This is necessary for accounting to the IRS. It is the honesty and integrity of the chapter committee that help this system work. I can honestly say that not one person from QF national has ever even asked me about a check I wrote for our chapter (I've been the treasurer for 3 years) There can't be more transparency than that to the chapter.

As for how QF still operates without taking any of your profit. There are several ways, but the biggest help is that they have a large long-standing organization to work under so that much of their expenses are shared. I can understand why a new quail group would have to have some of chapters money. QF gets the benefit of PF by sharing office space, warehouse space, magazine staff, advertisers, corporate sponsors, etc.

The way it works in a nutshell is this. QF gets the $30 membership for adults. It is suggested that this is 1 person per household. You go with your wife to a banquet, thats 1 membership. You go with your buddy, thats 2 memberships (unless you are willing to kiss him......not going there!) That's the easiest way to put it. They don't patrol this at events, that's all they ask. It's not out of line considering chapters keep all the $$$.

The chapters are encouraged to buy the banquet package, but it's not required. Sure, QF makes a profit on what it sells to chapters, but so do all the other groups (and they keep your money).

You keep all the money from your chapter sponsors, (minus the $30 membership)
You control your checkbook. IRS worries are taken care of with cash management system. They give you good support when you ask for it. They are yankees, but you can't hold that against them.

How it works is the money from memberships, the money from merchandise sales to chapters and members, magazine ad revenue, corporate sponsors, national office membership campaigns, etc..

I've rambled far too long. This should be a simple 5th grade mathematical decision. In one hand, I can use 100% of the money I raised at my lemonade stand. I the other I can only keep 60% even though I did all the work either way. Hmmmm.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ILL. QU MEMBER wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Our Chapter of qu is giving the membership its choice to pick what it chooses to do. We are having an open forum meeting, giving our membership all the info we have about National QU. We have spoke to a QF chapter rep. and also keep updated with QUWF. We will also give them that info. Our local chapter belongs to its members not to the board members. We will give our opinions but that is all they are -OPINIONS! The members have their choice, thats what they pay for. My bigest objection to QUWF is if it didn't work the first time without greed taking over, why should we put money into a new organization designed the same way? They still want 40% of our money we work so hard to get. Our local chapter will continue to do the same work we have always done no matter what we are called. We donate our time, gas, supplies, and money out of our pockets without pay -- because we believe in what we are doing. Souldn't the National Board Members do the same? The National Organization should be able to exist on our membership money and the donations they receive at the National level.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Stephen Rafe wrote 4 years 13 weeks ago

I served as the "About Dogs" column editor for Quail Unlimited following Robert Whele's retirement. I celebrated my 20th anniversary with the magazine this past summer. Yet, I never knew about the demise of the organization until I just read it here. All QU members (and all other birdhunters)who wish to continue to receive my information free of charge are invited to join the group I have hosted for several years now: Sportingbreed. It's at Yahoogroups.com

Stephen

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Setter Man wrote 4 years 13 weeks ago

There is a new group that has formed in Texas called Quail Coalition. 100% volunteer. All eleven Texas QU chapters have resigned from QU and are now part of QC. This includes the top 5 chapters from QU. This is a very different model. Money goes to research and education. you can learn about it at www.quailcoalition.org

0 Good Comment? | | Report

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from Mr. Creosote wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

QU was the very first conservation group I ever joined and became an active member of, but any current or former QU member knew this was coming.

In my region QU stopped being a viable organization years ago when it became apparent that the only thing national was really interested in was seeing how much money it could squeeze out of the state and local chapters.

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

our chapter is still going but for how long we don't know. we just hope to ride out the storm because we feel our goals are too important.
pray for ft. hood!

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from salmonquest wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Grassroots movements ruined by greed. This gives a black eye to many conservation movements and hopefully this isn't the model they will follow. Those that profited should be forced to plant 100's of acres with native shrubs and grasses....by hand until they worked off their ill begotten gains.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Big O wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

+1 for you Mr Creosote. sad to say but this is why my memberships have "thinned out" over the years including QU.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from 86Ram wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

This sucks .. It pains me to see organizations that start with the best of intentions and actually accomplish alot for the well being of wildlife and those who enjoy wildlife in many ways.

To fall to piss poor management, greed and to misappropriate donated funds and membership dues in that manor.

Mr. Alderman was just in his actions and should have been hailed a hero or saving grace rather than fired because of his actions. He did the right thing.

What next? Are other organizations gonna come to Jesus with their own scandals? Are we going to lose more grassroots organizations in this manner?

This a sad way for them (QU) to go out in a wimper not a bang!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

What can I say, it's like trying to find the last Boy Scout provided there is still one exists among us?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from quailhunter wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Quail and upland birds need all the help they can get, from reputable organizations. I concur with the birdman - geez, don't ride out the storm with a sinking ship. Go to a good organization like QF. I've been a member for 4 years, before that, a QU member and chapter officer. This is a no-brainer folks! QF chapters keep all their dollars - and we get to spend them on projects we decide on - and kids programs. QU folks are still spitting out lies about what Quail Forever is and does... it's a crying shame. If you're with a chapter, do your homework - invite someone from a QF chapter to come and talk to you, as I understand, their staff are not allowed to approach QU chapters until the QU folks call them in.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from matouse3 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Very sad

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Garrick Otero wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Sad. Damned sad. I hope the members of local chapters can find a way to keep up their good work.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from deadeye wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It saddens me greatly to think of all the disillusioned quail out there right now. How could this happen?
Seriously, if it is true that they got greedy, those defrauded should be allowed to determine their punishment.
As with the Enron croud. Planting shrubbery? Me doth think not! Stake them out for the ants!!! How dare they get greedy with volunteer labor. And don't let their families keep the ill-gotten gains either!!! Someone should be held accountable.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from TakeAKidHunting wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Sad story. We need all the conservationists we can get. Groups like the NWTF and DU deserve our support because they do so much hands-on conservaton work.

There's a different version of the story in the Augusta paper.

http://chronicle.augusta.com/stories/2009/11/08/pav_554902.shtml

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from birdman69 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Someone already said it -- don't throw the good out with the bad on a deal like this. Most conservation organizations deliver exactly what they say they will. Committed folks that want to do good things for upland birds should find another place to roost, and keep on doing good things. Look at the Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever models, where local chapters control the funds and put them to work for habitat and youth projects. Check out the websites, get some information, ask hard questions and get on with doing something good for wildlife.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from bobwhite wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Don't condemn the chapters and volunteers of QU. The problems were at the administrative level. Had it not been for the dedication of the volunteers and the incredible projects they implemented at a local level there wouldn't be any QU. QU's reputation is built on the backs of the local volunteers and they are to be commended for their efforts. And no, none of it has gone to waste. The habitat on the ground is still there. My hat is off to all the hard working local volunteers of QU. May they find another vehicle and continue their selfless work for quail and upland wildlife! Kudos to the QU volunteers.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Proverbs wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

My circle of hunting buddies left a national elk foundation for similar reasons. When membership swelled in the late 1990s, this foundation's directors and president found themselves awash in membership dues and estate gifts. And the temptations that followed. Too soon it became very political and all about the money and influence. No one from Arizona was in the administrative end of the organization, and it became clear the group wanted our money and support, but had no interest in Arizona habitat or doing anything positive for AZ hunters.

So we left and helped form the Arizona Elk Society, which has stayed on the mission on increasing and improving opportunities for hunters through improving habitat.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from tnhntr wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

In response to bobwhite, I would like to say a few things.

Your comments

"QUWF is the only organization that gives you a breakdown of exactly how the money will be spent. No other organizaiton provides as much transparancy by itemizing their breakdown.
Now for the QF model where chapters keep 100%. Everyone knows it takes money to operate so if QF allows their chapters to keep 100%, where do they get their money? If they give it all back how does the corporate office make money to operate? Think folks - it has to come from somewhere and the membership money by itself isn't enough after you take out expenses for servicing a membership.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not attacking QF. I'm just saying don't be naive enough to think QF doesn't get their money from somewhere."

are interesting since it is obvious that you have not talked with anyone in a QF chapter or who works with QF. I am a QF life member and chapter officer and I will be glad to shed some light on the subject. I've got nothing to gain, so I'll shoot you straight.

QF is not perfect, it's made up of people just like every other conservation organization. However, their model makes the most sense of any of the conservation organizations out there. Chapters keep 100% of the funds that they raise. The funds are ran through a cash management system. With this system, chapters have a local checking account that serves as a draft account, and a checking account at PF/QF's corporate bank. This account is specific to the chapter, the money is your money, each chapter has it's own checkbook. We don't have to have approval from anyone other than our chapter officers at meetings to write a check. Chapters receive interest payments quarterly (at competitive rates), and quarterly statements are automatically generated for the chapters and the IRS (the whole reason the cash management system was set up). Your checks have check boxes and a description box in them so that when you write a check, you indicate where the money was spent. This is necessary for accounting to the IRS. It is the honesty and integrity of the chapter committee that help this system work. I can honestly say that not one person from QF national has ever even asked me about a check I wrote for our chapter (I've been the treasurer for 3 years) There can't be more transparency than that to the chapter.

As for how QF still operates without taking any of your profit. There are several ways, but the biggest help is that they have a large long-standing organization to work under so that much of their expenses are shared. I can understand why a new quail group would have to have some of chapters money. QF gets the benefit of PF by sharing office space, warehouse space, magazine staff, advertisers, corporate sponsors, etc.

The way it works in a nutshell is this. QF gets the $30 membership for adults. It is suggested that this is 1 person per household. You go with your wife to a banquet, thats 1 membership. You go with your buddy, thats 2 memberships (unless you are willing to kiss him......not going there!) That's the easiest way to put it. They don't patrol this at events, that's all they ask. It's not out of line considering chapters keep all the $$$.

The chapters are encouraged to buy the banquet package, but it's not required. Sure, QF makes a profit on what it sells to chapters, but so do all the other groups (and they keep your money).

You keep all the money from your chapter sponsors, (minus the $30 membership)
You control your checkbook. IRS worries are taken care of with cash management system. They give you good support when you ask for it. They are yankees, but you can't hold that against them.

How it works is the money from memberships, the money from merchandise sales to chapters and members, magazine ad revenue, corporate sponsors, national office membership campaigns, etc..

I've rambled far too long. This should be a simple 5th grade mathematical decision. In one hand, I can use 100% of the money I raised at my lemonade stand. I the other I can only keep 60% even though I did all the work either way. Hmmmm.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from QUWF wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

The driving force behind a great organization is to never forget the passion and principles we all support in habitat work for the wild quail and all upland game. As the Phoenix rose from the ashes, so does the Quail and Upland Wildlife Federation, Inc (Tm). Solely dedicated to the chapters and members who have worked so very hard to put habitat work on the ground, and are doing it well.

An idea whose strength will be represented by a new organization but this time, built with transparancy, controls and ethics stronger than any before. The chapter and membership system was not broken, it worked, now we leave the issues of self behind and get back to what we all love best, habitat restoration and the wildlife that reward us all. The covey call has begun.

More to come! You heard it here first.

Yours in Conservation, QUWF

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from sgaredneck wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

+1 Mr. Cresote. We agreed to disagree a while back on AR's, but IMHO you are 100% on the money on your analysis of QU. I have to also take issue with other hitherto unnamed 'conservation organizations' that I no longer am on the rolls of, since they too seemed to be much too interested in the money they could squeeze out of my wallet.

All that said, a QU done right would be a real good thing.

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from eyeswideopen wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

When I first joined (mid-80's)80% of the money raised stayed local. By the late 80's QU National decided it needed an extra 20% cut. Then they needed a new National headquarters paid for by the chapters. I met Rocky Evans at a national convention in the early nineties. I had my suspicions that something wasn't right with the organization and subsequently dropped my membership. I've never joined another wildlife organization since. It's more about money than the quail, ducks, deer, etc.
The local member works his a$$ off, and then the national officers and board get to play for a living.

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from coho310 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

We'll miss ya',Quail Unlimited,and us (and the birds) will struggle without you.

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from birdchaser wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Sparrow101,
You better have another look at your new QUWTF bylaws, you seem to be the only one who is mis-informed here. My chapter looked at the new group real hard, but the fact that they are taking a percentage of your funds(40%just like good ol' QU) and that fact that they are all ready begging for your dollars before they even get started is a sure sign of bad things to come! Volunteers work their tales off for those dollars. They should be able to keep 100%! As for "being ran by chapters and not just one individual," well the bylaws we read only had one name on the bottom of the last page, and one name and address to send your money too. Good luck to you and your volunteers. I honestly hope you guys don't get ripped off again, but it appears to be inevitable with the route you have decided to take.

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from ILL. QU MEMBER wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Our Chapter of qu is giving the membership its choice to pick what it chooses to do. We are having an open forum meeting, giving our membership all the info we have about National QU. We have spoke to a QF chapter rep. and also keep updated with QUWF. We will also give them that info. Our local chapter belongs to its members not to the board members. We will give our opinions but that is all they are -OPINIONS! The members have their choice, thats what they pay for. My bigest objection to QUWF is if it didn't work the first time without greed taking over, why should we put money into a new organization designed the same way? They still want 40% of our money we work so hard to get. Our local chapter will continue to do the same work we have always done no matter what we are called. We donate our time, gas, supplies, and money out of our pockets without pay -- because we believe in what we are doing. Souldn't the National Board Members do the same? The National Organization should be able to exist on our membership money and the donations they receive at the National level.

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from Stephen Rafe wrote 4 years 13 weeks ago

I served as the "About Dogs" column editor for Quail Unlimited following Robert Whele's retirement. I celebrated my 20th anniversary with the magazine this past summer. Yet, I never knew about the demise of the organization until I just read it here. All QU members (and all other birdhunters)who wish to continue to receive my information free of charge are invited to join the group I have hosted for several years now: Sportingbreed. It's at Yahoogroups.com

Stephen

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from Robert Ewing wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

What is supposed to help promote and preserve the land ,the bird , and our right to hunt on them; was presumably raped by greed and politics.
How many of those guns and dollars where lost to political fundraisers?

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from birdchaser wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

QUWF is ran by the same bunch of crooks that ran QU before it's demise. They too are all ready begging for money and trying to STEAL 40% off the top from their new chapters. Like mentioned before by Birdman69 and QuailHunter, Check out organizations like Quail Forever that actually let you keep all of your dollars to spend within the local you raised them in. Cash grabbing scams like QUWF give good conservation a black eye.

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from sparrow101 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

birdchaser, You seem to be uninformed, let's see if I can help you a little. QUWF is comprised of chapters that felt QF was not the nest they wanted or needed. Much thought and consideration was given to joining that group but they are not a good fit for our habitat family. With the mess at QU, they were looking to build a new nest in order to keep the covey together doing what we do best - habitat! It is being "run" by a group chapter effort, that means VOLUNTEERS, not one person. As far as the money split, it is like no other. Your slamming comments do no one any good especialy made by one so unimformed as yourself. Our volunteer are amoung the best out there and my hat is off to them...for not giving up on their passion for the bobs.

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from eyeswideopen wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Someone has to lobby for the resurrection of the CRP program. 3 million acres came out of CRP this past year. If there is a group paying lobbyists to revive CRP then my hats off to them. CRP did more for all wildlife, not just upland game in the last 30 yrs, than planting 1/4-1/2 acre food plot strips, warm season grass plantings, etc. That was another big game of smoke and mirrors at QU National...money for lobbyists. Without total financial transparency, these types of organizations are just cash cows for the officers and board members.

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from jamesti wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

maybe instead of having so many organizations fighting for members and money we should all come to gether as 1 organization with the checks and balances to insure that these things are not allowed to happen without it being caught in about 5 minutes and those that try it are held accountable.

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from bobwhite wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

My applogies in advance for such a long post. I had to say it.

To those complaining about QU or QUWF raising money to acomplish their mission, without fund raising how do you suppose they are to operate? DU, PF, QF, NWTF, TNC, TU, RGS, RMEF, NRA, ACS, United Way, Salvation Army and the list goes on and on, all do it.

For the most part, with very few exceptions, the people working for conservation organizaitons do so out of a passion for the resource. The positions don't pay all that well for what they are required to do. It is not uncommon for a Regional Director/Biologist, or whatever you want to call them, to work during regular business hours then attend a meeting that evening, because that's when volunteers meet - at night. When all is said and done that so called greedy employee has worked a total of 14 or 16 hours then gets up the next day and does it all over again. Then when the weekend rolls around and you and I are out hunting or fishing they are attending a chapter function. Working 80 to 100 hour weeks is not uncommon. Most salaries range from the mid-twenties to the mid-thirties. 50 weeks a year @ 80 hours/week @ $35K = $8.75/hr.

Alderman was regaining the confidence of the chapters and staff and was righting a number of wrongs within QU, all the while not receiving pay for his service as QU's President. The QU BOD fired Alderman in a split vote because he exposed unethical activity and was forced by law to report it. He was fired from his position with QU for being honest, ethical and moral. There is no possible way that makes him a crook.

QUWF is born of those who are passionate about the resource. QU acheived a lot of good work despite administrative mismanagment because of the good people that worked in the field and the volunteers that believed in the cause. QUWF was formed to continue that good work with many of the same people who made the good things about QU good. There is no possible way they are crooks. They are the good guys here.

The chapter model of QU wasn't broke so why change it. The formula had been successful for 28 years. The by-laws are similar but in one VERY important regard they are different. The organization will be governed by a Board where the majority is elected by the membership. In regards to the money split, a chapter has the opportunity through performance standards to receive as high as a 70/30 split. In addition it has been made explicitly clear that if possible, the by-laws will be changed to allow more chapter money. The new group is dedicated to chapters and providing as much funding as possible.

QUWF is the only organization that gives you a breakdown of exactly how the money will be spent. No other organizaiton provides as much transparancy by itemizing their breakdown.

Now for the QF model where chapters keep 100%. Everyone knows it takes money to operate so if QF allows their chapters to keep 100%, where do they get their money? If they give it all back how does the corporate office make money to operate? Think folks - it has to come from somewhere and the membership money by itself isn't enough after you take out expenses for servicing a membership.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not attacking QF. I'm just saying don't be naive enough to think QF doesn't get their money from somewhere.

Bottom line, all groups get their money from somewhere using their own unique formula. If you believe in their cause, join and support them. Never will everyone be satisfied with how a particular group goes about business.

BTW, that 60/20/20 split that was changed to a 60/40 split was voted on by the membership who attended the National Convention in 1991. It wasn't taken away - members present voted to change the formula.

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from twra3206 wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

It is sad to seen QU go away but I think it is necessary because so much money from the hard working volunteers was basically stolen. The field staff of QU (ie RDs & National Coordinators) worked their tails off for not much money and I hate to see those guys loose ther jobs. But as a former QU RD I could see the writing on the wall several years ago I just hope our beloved Bobwhite don't get forgotten in all this mess.

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from Setter Man wrote 4 years 13 weeks ago

There is a new group that has formed in Texas called Quail Coalition. 100% volunteer. All eleven Texas QU chapters have resigned from QU and are now part of QC. This includes the top 5 chapters from QU. This is a very different model. Money goes to research and education. you can learn about it at www.quailcoalition.org

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