During their meeting at the recent Western Hunting & Conservation Expo, the Mule Deer Foundation (MDF) board of directors elected to add Alexa Sandoval and Grant Foster as new board members. Additionally, longtime board members Dan Harrison and Bob Jacobs have stepped off the board.
“I know I speak for the entire board when I say we are excited to have Alexa and Grant join the Mule Deer Foundation Board of Directors. Both are passionate about mule deer and mule deer hunting and bring important skill sets to our already outstanding board of directors,” said MDF President and CEO Joel Pedersen. “I would also like to thank Dan Harrison and Bob Jacobs for their many years of service on the board. Each has played a key role as we have experienced significant growth and change in the organization and appreciate their volunteer leadership.”
Alexa Sandoval retired in 2018 as director of the New Mexico Game and Fish Department after 24 years of service. She began her career with the department as a game ranger and held various other positions, including game manager, federal grants coordinator, and chief financial officer until she was appointed director in 2014. She considers herself a lifelong conservationist and is an avid hunter, fisherman and outdoorswoman She shares her passion for wildlife conservation with her husband, Ernie, who also retired from the NMDGF after 25 years of service as a sergeant in the Law Enforcement Division. Ms. Sandoval currently She is the CFO for a rural electric utility in central New Mexico.
“I have spent my career dedicated to the conservation of all wildlife, but particularly the iconic western mule deer,” Sandoval said. “I am honored to serve as a board member of the Mule Deer Foundation and look forward to working with our dedicated staff and volunteers to promote our success.”
Grant Foster is an avid hunter and a partner at the Dorsey & Whitney law firm. He has more than 30 years of legal experience helping companies, including many of the largest companies in the hunting industry, protect and enforce his intellectual property. For decades, Foster has been active in helping conservation organizations develop, promote, and establish conservation policies, goals, and laws that promote wildlife conservation and management. Among others, Foster helped draft Utah constitutional amendment language, known as Prop 5, which now requires a two-thirds majority vote before hunting laws can be changed on ballot initiative.
“Mule deer have a special place in my heart. Each fall my mind turns to the mule deer’s brown bodies and velvety antlers that roam the mountains and valleys of the west. This passion, which began when I was a child, has been fueled by the toil and sweat of many others who have come before me,” Foster said. “As a member of the MDF board of directors, I look forward to giving back and passing this passion for mule deer to future generations.”
“Alexa and Grant will be outstanding additions to the MDF board and we welcome them to the team,” said Board Chairman Chad Schearer. “Each brings an important perspective that will help our board continue to navigate the path of growth for MDF. As an organization, we have been able to increase our visibility and become a key leader for mule deer and black-tailed deer conservation, and we appreciate individuals with a valuable set of credentials who volunteer to help define our future.”
The Mule Deer Foundation is the only conservation group in North America dedicated to restoring, enhancing, and protecting mule and black-tailed deer and their habitat, with a focus on science and program efficiency. MDF is a strong voice for hunters on issues of access policy, wildlife management, and conservation. MDF recognizes regulated hunting as a viable management component and is committed to recruiting and retaining youth in shooting and conservation sports. Get involved in your state or become a member at www.muledeer.org or call 801-973-3940.