Matthew Purcell

Ennis, Montana

Biography

I am a life long angler and outdoorsman with a passion for protecting our natural resources and public lands. I graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Bachelor's of Science in Plant Science and was involved with the University's fly fishing club. After graduating, I moved to Ennis to pursue my career in agriculture and enjoy the ample recreation opportunities the Madison Valley and surrounding areas have to offer. My goal is to play a role in protecting this Blue Ribbon fishery and ensure the sustainability of the Madison River and its ecosystem for future generations.

Why do you want to be on the Board of Directors for the Madison River Foundation?

Now, more than ever, it is important to be proactive in protecting our precious natural resources from the effects of climate change increasing human footprint. I would love to play an active role in protecting this wonderful river.

What makes our mission meaningful to you?

The key to protecting this river and its ecosystem is to preserve the assets that make it such a special place. We must be willing to take the necessary steps today to promote the river's sustainability for years to come.

What experience would you bring to the MRF board?

A youthful perspective and a recreational wade angler's point of view. I have scientific educational background and believe in research-based innovations to promote a sustainable future.

What interests you about our organization? Which aspect of our organization interests you most?

I believe the MRF is an important voice for the river and offers science-backed solutions to the issues facing the future health of the Madison River and Valley.

What is your favorite project the foundation has worked on and why?

The recent land acquisition to open up five miles of new public access, which for me, as a wade angler is very important.

Do you support Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks recommendations for the Madison River Recreation Plan? Why or why not?

Yes, I do. While many are concerned with personal gains, there are many of us who stand nothing to gain but only to lose if something is not done to regulate the influx of fishermen and the increasing pressure the Madison is facing.

Do you support walk-in wade only sections on the Madison River? Why or why not?

Yes. As a wade fisherman, I often go to Valley Garden to avoid the floating crowds that clog the upper Madison. I believe there should be a section of the river where I don't have to compete with floaters.

Do you believe that the fishery will be impacted by overuse?

Absolutely.

How important is advocacy on local, state, and federal policies to you?

Extremely important, policy is what protects our natural resources.

What experience do you have with fundraising?

I have limited experience with fundraising outside of typical school fundraisers, but I am willing to assist with these efforts in any way I can.

How would you plan to increase fundraising for the Foundation as Board of Director?

I would work to spread MRF's message at a local, state, and federal level in hopes of receiving grants/aid or seek additional grant sources the MRF isn't currently receiving.

How much time a month can you commit to meetings and serving the mission of the Foundation?

Living in Ennis I am open to meetings or project volunteer work as needed.