MEMPHIS, Tennessee – June 5, 2017 – Ducks Unlimited (DU) elected Texas native Rogers Hoyt Jr. as its 44th president during the organization's 80th national convention in San Antonio, on Saturday, June 3. Hoyt succeeds Paul Bonderson Jr., who now serves as the chairman of the board.
"I vividly remember riding in a pickup between my paternal granddad and my father as they scouted ponds to see which ones had ducks," Hoyt said. "On my first duck hunt as a kindergartner, Dad carried me piggyback through the water. I think I was destined to be involved with Ducks Unlimited because of the influences I had growing up. All the people who shaped my life enjoyed the outdoors and always believed if you take, you give back. To be chosen to lead this great organization is something I have only dreamed about. I am truly honored that the volunteers of DU have the faith and trust in me to serve as their president for the next two years."
In his acceptance speech, Hoyt said he will focus on growing and strengthening DU's volunteer-led fundraising event system, encourage more of DU's more than 700,000 members to advocate for sound public policy that benefits waterfowl and their habitats, build on DU's growing youth education and engagement programs, and see that the $2-billion Rescue Our Wetlands continental campaign reaches its ambitious goal.
"For the past six years we've seen incredible growth in our event system, and we're on track to surpass budgeted goals again this year," Hoyt said. "This wouldn't be possible without the commitment, passion and dedication of our volunteers. They are truly the force that drives DU, and my goal is to see those numbers increase even more during my presidency."
A DU volunteer and supporter for more than three decades, Hoyt served as first vice president of DU Inc., president of Ducks Unlimited de Mexico and on the board of directors for Ducks Unlimited Canada and Wetlands America Trust, DU's land trust. Hoyt and his wife, Camille, have one son and live in Uvalde, Texas.
This year's national convention was a celebration of Ducks Unlimited's 80 years of conservation and included seminars, entertainment, conservation education, demonstrations, tours and more. Next year's DU national convention will be held in Indianapolis, May 30 – June 2, 2018.
Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 14 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across the continent. Guided by science and dedicated to program efficiency, DU works toward the vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever. For more information on our work, visit www.ducks.org.