The Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD) and the nonprofit conservation organization Trout Unlimited (TU) have entered into an agreement for a co-shared position to focus on angler recruitment, retention and reactivation (R3).

This is the first such shared R3 arrangement in the U.S. between a state fish and wildlife agency and a non-governmental organization (NGO) for fishing. The model has been used successfully between some wildlife agencies (including AZGFD) and NGOs (such as the National Wild Turkey Federation) for hunting R3 efforts.

R3 efforts are critical to fish and wildlife conservation. Anglers, hunters, recreational shooters and boaters fund a major portion of conservation through their license purchases and a federal excise tax on firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, and motor boat fuel.

“This partnership is very exciting and will provide much needed capacity to grow fishing participation,” said AZGFD Director Ty Gray, who is also Chair of the Angler/Boating Participation Committee of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA). “Key elements to success in angler R3 are partnerships and dedicated R3 staff and resources. TU’s foresight in this venture will allow both organizations to increase our results in developing the next generation of anglers and aquatic conservationists.”

“Trout Unlimited is honored to create this shared R3 engagement position with the Arizona Game and Fish Department,” said Nate Rees, TU’s Arizona Field Coordinator. “We have a strong working relationship with AZGFD, and this newly created position only reinforces that. The R3 model is integral to accomplishing TU’s mission of restoring and preserving native and wild trout streams so future generations can experience and connect with them. This position is one of a kind and we hope to replicate it across the country.”

To learn more about AZGFD’s fishing recruitment, retention and reactivation efforts and opportunities, visit, or read the article below.

To learn more about Trout Unlimited and cold water fisheries and conservation, visit

Subscribe to our Newsletter