February 6, 2023

SAM Cuts Name Association With Maine Wildlife Conservation Council

SAM Statement:

Confusion related to the Maine Wildlife Conservation Council, (MWCC) and the United States Sportsmen’s Alliance, (USSA).

Dear SAM members and other interested parties:

Last year we won a major victory when we defeated the bear referendum. In response to the grave threat from the Humane Society of the United States, SAM worked with several of our outdoor partners, including the Maine Professional Guides and the Maine Trapper’s Association, the United States Sportsmen’s Alliance and others to create the Ballot Question Committee titled, The Maine Wildlife Conservation Council. Together, we defeated the bear referendum and showed we could all come together to defeat a common adversary.

Since the referendum, the Maine Wildlife Conservation Council and SAM have parted ways on friendly terms. Many people viewed SAM as one of the key leaders of the MWCC and since very few people are aware of the fact that the MWCC is no longer a function of SAM, we want to clear up any confusion surrounding SAM and the MWCC.

The reorganized MWCC is in no way associated with SAM. Because the MWCC is aggressively fundraising with our mutual partners and friends, we feel it is time to educate the public and our partners to this fact to help clear up any existing or future confusion.

Just after the referendum, we were asked to support the continuation of the MWCC and to contribute $10,000.00 to the MWCC each year. Our Board decided that creating a new organization would be an expensive duplication of SAM’s very limited resources and that much of the money would be consumed by overhead and staff.

Shortly after the referendum vote, the MWCC was reconstituted by the Maine Professional Guides Association, Maine Trappers and the United States Sportsmen’s Alliance. They have since hired staffers from the bear referendum campaign, including James Cote and Rob Sexton. Unfortunately, it was not made clear to the sporting community that the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine is not a member of MWCC.

Because of the subsequent confusion, combined with the fact that the United States Sportsmen’s Alliance is now calling themselves the “Sportsmen’s Alliance” in press releases and other communications, we feel a need to clear up the confusion. The United States Sportsmen’s Alliance is a good friend and we owe them our thanks for all they do, but we do want the sportsmen and women of the state to realize we are two separate organizations.

The Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine is ready to face any future referendum battles and we are committed to working with all of our partner organizations. We appreciate all of the support we continue to receive from clubs members and the public. We hope this explanation helps and any questions should be sent to:

David Trahan


Sportsmen’s Alliance Reveals New Logo, Name

Press Release from Sportsmen’s Alliance:


Every now and then an organization needs a jolt to revitalize its mission and energy. Today’s Sportsmen’s Alliance is more energized and aggressive – both about what we’re doing and how we’re doing it – than at any time since its inception nearly 40 years ago.

“Everyone throughout the organization, from the board of directors down, felt we needed a new look to coincide with the new energy taking place around here, and I think we’ve done just that,” said Brian Lynn, vice president of marketing and communications. “We’ve created an icon that symbolically represents the mission of the Sportsmen’s Alliance, and which gives us an updated and professional look upon which to continue to brand the organizations.”

Working with Gray Loon Marketing Group, the newly designed icon is a tribute to the arrowhead and conveys its power and strength, as well as the role of the Sportsmen’s Alliance as the tip of the industry’s spear in the battle to protect our heritage. “We feel the logo successfully ties together our history, mission and importance to the outdoor lifestyle while maintaining a clean and modern feel,” said Lynn.

The three points of the logo represent hunting, fishing and trapping, where the Sportsmen’s Alliance devotes all of our energy and resources, and the three sides symbolize the realms in which we protect our heritage: in all 50 state legislatures and at the federal level, in the court system and at state ballot boxes. The colors convey a sense of strength, unity and sportsman activities.

As part of the update, the “U.S.” will be dropped from the name of both the Sportsmen’s Alliance and the Foundation. Confusion between the use of the abbreviated U.S. and United States created issues with consistent branding, while the acronym USSA contributed to that conflict and resulted in poor search-engine results online due to several large mainstream organizations using the same abbreviation.

Likewise, the website’s domain name suffered similarly as it didn’t match the name of the organization completely. As part of the rebranding, the domain/URL for the Sportsmen’s Alliance website will change to sportsmensalliance.org.

Social media channels will update to reflect the new-look Sportsmen’s Alliance and new name; follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

“These are changes that will take some time to adapt to, but are moves that ultimately position the Sportsmen’s Alliance and our partners for a stronger future,” said Lynn.

While the logo and name have changed, the mission to protect and advance hunting, fishing and trapping remains constant – the Sportsmen’s Alliance will continue to protect these endeavors in all 50 states, at the federal level, in the court system and at the ballot box. And with a 95-percent success rate fighting animal-rights initiatives, responsible and transparent financial accountability, which is epitomized by the coveted 4-Star Rating from Charity Navigator, sportsmen will continue to have a protector and advocate for decades to come.


Field & Stream’s Licata to Keynote Sportsmen’s Alliance Rally

Press Release from the U.S. Sportsman’s Alliance:

Anthony Licata, the Editor-in-Chief of Field & Stream and Editorial Director of Outdoor Life and SHOT Business, will be the keynote speaker at the “Save Our Heritage Rally” for the Sportsmen’s Alliance on Sept. 19 at the Aladdin Shrine Center in Columbus, Ohio.

“We’re thrilled to have Anthony as our keynote speaker for this year’s rally. Not only does he oversee the production of the country’s top outdoor magazines, he walks the walk by being a passionate and accomplished outdoorsman. He also understands the challenges that outdoorsmen face today, which makes him an ideal speaker for our biggest event of the year,” said Sportsmen’s Alliance President and CEO, Nick Pinizzotto.

In his role at Bonnier Outdoor Group, Licata oversees all content production – print, digital and video – for Field & Stream, Outdoor Life and SHOT Business. Licata started his career at Field & Stream in 1999 and has held the Editor-in-Chief position since 2007.

He has overseen record audience growth for all the brands in the Bonnier Outdoor group and led the titles to numerous awards, including two National Magazine General Excellence Awards for Field & Stream – the most prestigious in magazine journalism.

Licata grew up hunting and fishing in rural Northeast Pennsylvania, and although he has hunted and fished all over the world, bowhunting for whitetails at home with his family and friends is still his favorite outdoors activity. Helping hunters lead important conservation work and recruiting new participants to these sports are two of his most important goals.

The “Save Our Heritage Rally,” dedicates all proceeds to the protection of hunting, fishing and trapping from legislation, ballot initiatives and court battles waged by animal rights and anti-hunting groups.

The rally features raffles, live and silent auctions, games and a catered dinner. Dozens of firearms, trophy guided hunts for everything from black bears to alligators and a $10,000 grand-prize giveaway sponsored by B&N Coal are up for grabs. Doors open at 3 p.m. and dinner is served at 6 p.m.

Tickets are $50 or you can reserve a table of 10 for $500. Each ticket includes dinner and entry into the $10,000 grand-prize drawing.

Click here to purchase tickets now.


USSA Files Great Lakes Wolf Appeal

From the United States Sportsman’s Alliance:

The U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation has filed an appeal of the ruling handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Beryl A. Howell on Dec. 20 concerning management of gray wolves in the western Great Lakes area.

The Feb. 13 notice of appeal seeks to overturn the ruling that forced the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to return a population of wolves found in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan to the protections afforded by the Endangered Species Act – with ramifications that affect the entire scope of managing the apex predator. The decision stemmed from a lawsuit brought by Humane Society of the United States; Born Free, USA; Help Our Wolves Live; and Friends of Animals and Their Environment.

“It’s unfortunate that we have to continue to fight this legal battle,” said Evan Heusinkveld, USSA’s vice president of government affairs. “There is no doubt that wolves in the region have recovered, but to hold their management in those states hostage until wolves are reestablished in Central Park in New York City is ludicrous and we will continue to fight it.”

The U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation and our partners, collectively known as the “Hunter Conservation Coalition,” will fight for sportsmen’s rights, as well as for a state’s right to scientifically manage wildlife found within their borders.

The Hunter Conservation Coalition consists of the following organizations: U.S. Sportsmen Alliance Foundation, Safari Club International, National Rifle Association of America, Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association, Michigan United Conservation Clubs, Wisconsin Bowhunters Association, Upper Peninsula Bear Houndsmen Association, Michigan Hunting Dog Federation and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.


Sold-Out Sportsmen’s Banquet Shows Determination of Maine Sportsmen to Win in November

On Saturday, August 9th, sportsmen from across New England gathered in Augusta to raise money to defeat an anti-bear hunting initiative set for the November ballot. In all, 1,100 people packed the Augusta Civic Center to raise money to defeat Question 1, which would ban bear hunting using bait, dogs, and traps.

Nick Pinizzotto, president and CEO of U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA), knew the night was going to be special when he saw the size of the crowd waiting for the doors to open. Scheduled to be a featured speaker at the Save Maine’s Bear Hunt Super Banquet, Pinizzotto saw hundreds of men and women eager to get inside the hall to save their right to hunt.<<<Read More>>>


Trailblazer Featured at Cabela’s Stores Nationwide

Looking for a way to introduce your family to the great outdoors this weekend? Look no further as the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation is partnering with Cabela’s on Saturday, May 3 for the Cabela’s Outdoor Adventure Day presented by the Trailblazer Adventure Program.

For the third consecutive year, Trailblazer has teamed up with Cabela’s to give thousands of youth and their families an opportunity to experience outdoor activities such as target shooting, archery, fishing and much more. In all, 48 Cabela’s stores will be hosting an event.

“This is a great chance for youth and their families to experience hands-on activities that will leave a lasting impression,” said Frank Price, USSA education director. “We are happy to be teaming up with Cabela’s again this year to provide an introduction to the outdoors.”

Participants of Cabela’s Outdoor Adventure Day presented by the Trailblazer Adventure Program will be entered to win great gifts such as air rifles and fishing combos. Activities and event times vary by store. Contact your local Cabela’s store for details.


Anti-Hunting Senator Takes Another Run at Nebraska Mountain Lion Ban

Despite having already suffered multiple defeats in his quest to ban mountain lion hunting in Nebraska, Senator Ernie Chambers has again surfaced with another attempt to ban the season.

With little more than a week to go in the 2014 legislative session, Senator Chambers filed a motion yesterday to yet again vote to over-ride the governor’s veto on LB 671, the mountain lion ban, despite previous attempts failing twice last week. Because the previous attempts to overturn the veto both failed, it’s up to Senate Speaker Greg Adams whether to suspend the rules to grant Senator Chamber’s another attempt.

In addition, Senator Chambers also filed his mountain lion ban language as an amendment to a bill dealing with insurance companies. Despite intense pressure from Senator Chambers, the amendment was ruled not germane to the bill. This means that the amendment was not closely related to the topic of the bill, thereby out-of-order and could not be considered.

“It’s evident that Senator Chambers is going to try every trick in the book to pass his anti-hunting agenda,” Evan Heusinkveld, USSA’s vice president of government affairs. “Senator Chambers has now turned his focus to derailing the legislative process as much as possible in an effort to force his way.”

Senator Chambers has also filed his anti-hunting amendment on 10 additional bills that are scheduled to be considered today.

“Senator Chambers’ amendment is not germane to any of those bills, either” said Heusinkveld. “Regardless, it’s clear that Senator Chambers is content to throw a wrench into the works until he gets his way. Nebraska sportsmen must be vigilant and call their senators today in opposition to this effort. Let your senators know that Nebraska sportsmen and women expect their wildlife to be managed by the professionals at the Game and Parks Commission and not by someone with an anti-hunting agenda.”

Take Action! Nebraska sportsmen should call Senate Speaker Greg Adams TODAY at (402) 471-2756 and let him know that sportsmen expect their wildlife to be managed by professionals, not anti-hunting politics. Nebraska sportsmen should also call their state senator today and ask them to stand up for sportsmen and vote against any attempt to ban the mountain lion season. To find your senator’s phone number visit the USSA Legislative Action Center.


USSA Announces Vice President of Development and Membership

Columbus, OH – The U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA) is pleased to announce that Sean Curran, of Sunbury, Ohio has been appointed Vice President of Development and Membership. He joins the organization during a time of great opportunity as it seeks to create and advance robust development and membership programs geared toward defending our outdoor heritage.

Sean’s main responsibilities will be to oversee fundraising and membership initiatives as well as developing relationships with sportsmen and outdoor partners nation-wide.

“This is an unbelievable opportunity for me to help protect and promote my lifelong passion for the outdoors,” Curran said. “I’m blessed to join a highly talented team that is so dedicated to our outdoor heritage.”

Curran most recently worked for Guardian Industries Inc., bringing over 10 years of experience to USSA in cultivating and advancing long-term relationships, building solid customer bases, and establishing key partnerships and alliances. He has a strong background as a results-proven strategist and manager with success in developing new business opportunities. His experience and ability to inspire and capture the imagination of individual, foundation and corporate donors will be the key to his success at USSA.

“We are very excited to welcome Sean to the USSA team,” said Nick Pinizzotto, USSA president and CEO. “He brings an excellent sales and customer service record and is passionate about our outdoor heritage and protecting it for future generations. He will help us grow during this critical and exciting time in our organization’s history.”

(Pictured below: Sean Curran, USSA Vice President of Development and Membership)



U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance Opens Office in Sacramento

Columbus, OH – The U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA), a national organization dedicated to protecting and advancing the rights of hunters, anglers, and trappers, has opened an office in Sacramento, California. This office will serve as a western U.S. headquarters for USSA and play a significant role in protecting the deep-rooted outdoor heritage found in the Golden State.

“Expanding our operations is a natural progression for our organization as we plan to more effectively protect the interests of sportsmen across the country,” said Nick Pinizzotto, USSA president and CEO. “Many of the issues caused by the anti-hunting community arise in the western U.S. and particularly California. With a mission to protect hunting, fishing and trapping, we see it as our responsibility to be there to defend America’s outdoor heritage.”

The western U.S. office will be led by Michael Flores who has a long and productive history of serving California on outdoor-related issues. Flores served as president of the California Fish and Game Commission from 2000 to 2007, was chairman of the California Wildlife Conservation Board, and was a director on the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s national board from 2000 to 2006. He currently is Vice Chairman on the USA Shooting Foundation Board of Directors and has held numerous other esteemed roles including Secretary of Foreign Affairs for California.

Flores’ experience, coupled with USSA’s proven track record of success, will be the driving force behind the goal of building a strong coalition of members and member organizations throughout the region. Benefits of this coalition would include the capacity to proactively impact policies that affect citizens’ ability to hunt, fish and trap in California and beyond.

Integrating local community leaders, policy makers and conservation organizations is key to USSA’s success throughout the western states. These groups are recognized as critical components to keeping the outdoor community informed on hunting, fishing, and trapping related issues.

USSA has taken on the responsibility to provide leadership nationally in the battle against animal rights extremists and anti-hunting organizations. Establishing a western U.S. headquarters to complement its national headquarters in Columbus, Ohio will greatly assist us in that endeavor.


USSA Leader Nominated for SHOT Business Award

Bud Pidgeon, former president and CEO of the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA) and the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation (USSAF), has been nominated by SHOT Business magazine for their Person of the Year award. SHOT Business is the official publication of the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF).

The award “recognizes the individual who has done the best job of promoting the shooting sports and presenting a positive image while making great personal sacrifices—both in time and financial resources—in an effort to preserve our hunting and shooting heritage and protect our firearms freedoms.”

“I am certainly honored and humbled to be recognized by SHOT Business and NSSF,” said Pidgeon. “This recognition is not possible without the USSA and the legion of sportsmen supporting our efforts.”

Pidgeon led the USSA and USSAF for 16 years, retiring in August of this year.

Many of the organizations most impressive victories occurred during his reign including the creation of the Trailblazer Adventure Program which to date has attracted over 1.7 million youth and their families to experience outdoor sports, many for the first time. Pidgeon also played a leadership role in creating the Families Afield campaign that has resulted in over one million apprentice licenses being sold in 35 states to date.

The SHOT Show (Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trade Show) is the largest conference for firearms, hunting and shooting accessories in the world, and recognizes leading individuals and corporations in the business through its SHOT Business Awards. Winners will be announced at the Bonnier Outdoor Group SHOT Show industry breakfast on January 14, 2014.