On May 15, the Idaho Conservation League completed our It’s My ID campaign! This  ambitious $4 million campaign was intended to double endowment and create a climate fund  to advance an Idaho-based responses to climate change, above and beyond raising our annual budget.

Endowment Built the  ICL of Today

In 1989, businessman Walt Minnick (who’d later serve as an ICL board member and member of Congress), started the ICL endowment with a check and a challenge to raise $1 million in the coming decade.  

In 1997, approaching ICL’s 25th anniversary, the Harder Foundation’s Del Langbauer met with the ICL board to explain a $150,000 challenge grant for the endowment campaign. Del said, “If you do this well, things will happen tomorrow you have no way of predicting today.”

In 1999, I  was able to call Minnick and say, “We’ve done it.” Minnick said, “You’ll all do many things at ICL you’ll be proud of, but you may never do something as important as this.”

The endowment campaign of the 1990s, more than anything we’d done, built the ICL of today. Asking for money never to be spent, creating a fund for generations ahead, transformed ICL. Lifting our eyes from short-term battles and making next week’s payroll, we began crafting strategies for years-long campaigns, for building enduring power and credibility, for truly representing the diversity of Idaho, and for building an organization capable of creating Idaho’s conservation future.

This turned a group of scrappy activists into an enduring institution that owns two of its three offices, retains a highly regarded staff of 20, meets a $2.2 million annual budget, and demonstrates bankable credibility and trust across the Idaho political landscape. It also transformed ICL’s leaders, which in turn helped inspire and empower ICL’s supporters. This is how ICL broke a 29-year drought and passed the Owyhee wilderness bill and then the Boulder-White Clouds, for a total of nine new wilderness areas. With Scotchman Peaks now on deck, Idaho’s four-person congressional delegation has three different Republican wilderness champions.

This was the foundation for how ICL stopped the nation’s largest source of airborne mercury, resulting in a nationwide Environmental Protection Agency  rule. This is the foundation for how ICL will successfully move Idaho to coal-free electrical generation.

It’s My ID  Enhances Our Capacity

In a strategic planning retreat four years ago, the ICL board heard staff interest in creating a new campaign to double the ICL endowment. We then saw how the earlier endowment effort had also transformed the ICL board, attracting and developing leaders who challenged us to expand our vision, to not only double the endowment but to look to the greatest challenge facing Idaho-climate change-and to raise the funds for our soon-to-be cash-starved energy and water programs.

Two years ago, we began our $4 million It’s My ID campaign in earnest, under the leadership of former board chair Elaine French (pictured at top). Because many of the contributions coming in were dedicated to doubling the endowment, ICL expanded the goal to $4.43 million so that we could meet the climate fund goal of $2 million as well.  You-our members-accepted the challenge and showed your support for our work. As we closed the campaign on May 15, ICL  had raised nearly $5 million.  

On May 20 at Wild Idaho, we were able to honor  Elaine for her leadership on this campaign.  Where our original  campaign to create a $1 million endowment had taken a decade, It’s My ID raised almost 5 times that in less than half the time. Truly, this is a significant accomplishment. And  it is because of Elaine, because of the steering committee, because of staff who dedicated untold numbers of hours to meeting with and calling people.

We also honored  Walt Minnick for making the endowment a reality in the first place. And to bring it full circle, at Wild Idaho, Minnick  presented me with  the matching contribution that  completed our  It’s My ID campaign. He wrote the first check for the endowment-and the last check for It’s My ID!

As Langbauer said 20  years ago, “If you do this well, things will happen tomorrow you have no way of predicting today.”

It’s My ID Campaign Steering Committee

A very special thank you to our It’s My ID campaign steering committee!
Mary Bachman
Jerry Brady
Paul Cunningham
Mark Daly
Dennis Fitzpatrick
Elaine French, chair
Wendy Jaquet
Steve Lockwood
Walt Minnick
Steve Mitchell
Tom Pomeroy
Julie Richardson

Honorary Members:
Gov. Cecil D. Andrus
Mary Lou Reed

Honor Roll (Gifts & Pledges)

Gifts & Pledges (as of 11/27/17)

  • John & Elaine French


  • Anonymous
  • Judy Baker
  • David Bonderman
  • Tom Goodrich & Rebecca Patton
  • Walter Minnick & A. K. Lienhart Minnick
  • Gloria Osberg
  • John Osberg


  • Mary Donovan & Steve Seward
  • Patrick Haas & Alison Beck Haas
  • Rick Johnson & Roberta Crockett
  • Trish Klahr & Lee Melly
  • Steve Lockwood & Molly O’Reilly
  • Robert Swandby


  • Anonymous
  • Lori & Tom Banducci
  • Russ & Janet Buschert
  • The Butler Conservation Fund
  • Paul & Heidi Cunningham
  • Lauren & Alan Dachs
  • Christopher Davidson
  • Mary Bachman & William Downing
  • Don & Kay McCarter
  • Suki & Bill Molina
  • Molly & Tom Page
  • Julia & Alan Richardson
  • Lewis & Connie Ulrey


  • Anonymous
  • Dave & Lyn Anderson
  • Greg Carr
  • Elsie & Gene Cheston
  • Mark & Vickie Daly
  • Dennis B. & Tracy L. Fitzpatrick
  • Harder Foundation
  • Michael Mars
  • Peter & Kathy Metcalf
  • Steve Mitchell & Louisa Moats
  • Jim Norton
  • Mary Lou Reed
  • Margrit von Braun & Ian von Lindern


  • Anonymous
  • Tony & Amie Bell
  • The Benjamin Family
  • Jerry Brady
  • Claire Casey
  • Carolyn & Chuck Coiner
  • Paul Collins, M.D.
  • Jane & Ken Dunbar
  • David & Carrie Eichberg
  • Equinox Foundation
  • Wayne & Gerry Faude
  • Susan Gilliland
  • Margaret & Willy Gorrissen
  • Mike & Irene Healy
  • Hull Family Foundation
  • Josephine & William Lowe
  • Don & Maureen Martin
  • Patricia Millington
  • Clay Napper
  • E. W. Pauley Foundation, Steve & Marylyn Pauley
  • Tom Pomeroy
  • Char Roth
  • Jerry & Carrie Scheid
  • Jennifer P. Speers
  • Robert & Joyce Sulanke
  • Jim Thompson & Priscilla Pounds
  • Bill & Marisa Weppner
  • Julie Weston & Gerry Morrison


  • Anonymous
  • Perry Brown & Desiree Brunette
  • Charles Herrington & Ilene Shell
  • Chuck & Jo Hower
  • Wendy & Jim Jaquet
  • Larry & LaDawn Kidd
  • Mark Kieckbusch & Kathryn Earhart
  • Dr. Peter Kozisek & Julia Robinson
  • Diane & Jack Leaverton
  • Larry Levy & Diana Brambrink
  • Elise Lufkin & Amos Galpin
  • Ronald Mamajek & Denise Zembryki
  • Manning Family
  • May Hardware
  • John & Virginia Moody
  • Aimee & Greg Moran
  • Carl H. & E. Jane Nellis
  • Ben Otto
  • Michael & Charlotte Page
  • Buddy Paul & Beverly Lingle
  • Jen Pierce & Dave Wood
  • Rich & Georgiann Raimondi
  • Elisabeth Ratcliff & Charles Tate
  • Lucy & John Schott
  • Elizabeth B. Simon
  • Jeff Snyder-Reinke & Nicole Snyder
  • The Vanderbilt Family Foundation
  • Robert Vestal & Jyl Hoyt
  • Chris & Carol Yoder


  • Margie & Clif Amundsen
  • Tanya Anderson
  • Kahle & Kathy Becker
  • Chuck Blair & Signe Sather-Blair
  • Brooke Bonner & Kyle Baysinger
  • Chas & Torene Bonner
  • Boswell Family Foundation
  • Tim Breuer & Rachel Winer
  • Buffington Mohr McNeal
  • Stoney Burke
  • Carol Casler
  • Pam Cardinale, in memory of Larry Cardinale
  • Natalie & Todd Chavez
  • Confluence Fund
  • Charlotte Cook
  • Jim & Bobi Dekleinhans
  • Eileen Doten
  • Dr. Buck Drew & Becky Klassen
  • Susan Drumheller & Mike Murray
  • Mary H. DuPree & Mark Hume
  • Maryellen & Sparky Easom
  • James & Barbara Fillmore
  • Amy Haak
  • Sally & Tom Halbach
  • Anne Herndon & Russ McKinley
  • Jim & Lorna Irwin
  • Patricia Kennedy
  • Mark Kiehlbauch
  • Paul Martin
  • Dani Mazzotta & Steve Southard
  • Joe & Lynn Morris
  • John O’Connor & Jennifer Durbin
  • Skip & Esther Oppenheimer
  • Page Foundation
  • Marshall F. Priest
  • Mike & Michelle Purcell
  • Meg Roberts & Mark & Mira Torf
  • Tracy & Carl Rowe
  • Todd & Amy Rustad
  • Greg & Lori Sims
  • Stanley Family Fund
  • Penny and Ted Thomas Fund of the Princeton Area Community Foundation
  • Marjorie & Barry Traub
  • Dr. Charles H. Trost
  • Kim & Frank Trotter
  • Carolyn Valiquette
  • Don & Sheri Weber
  • Charles Wemple & Julie Britton-Wemple
  • Genie Sue Weppner
  • Sarah Whitaker
  • Michael Wise & Linda Erdmann
  • Mark & Erin Zaleski
  • Fred & Melly Zeillemaker