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National Parks Conservation Association

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animals, Environment, Environmental Education, Land Resources Conservation, Wildlife Preservation & Protection

Mission: We're protecting and enhancing America's National Park System for present and future generations.

Results: The National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) works on the ground, in and around our national parks, conducting research, and working hand-in-hand with park staff, community leaders, park advocates, and state and federal legislators to ensure that our national parks and monuments are welcoming and well funded, well managed and well protected for generations today and tomorrow. NPCA can be found mobilizing citizens and joining with communities, businesses, landowners, and activists; promoting legislation that strengthens protections for the national parks, advocating for the funding our national parks and monuments need, establishing or enforcing legal safeguards through the courts; and doing everything we can to protect our national parks for years to come. NPCA was established in 1919 to be an independent voice for our National Park System. One of our founders, Stephen Mather, was also the first director of the National Park Service, which was established in 1916. Mather and others saw a clear need for an independent voice outside of the federal government to protect the nation’s parklands. For more than 90 years, the nonpartisan, independent, membership organization has been the leading voice of the American people in protecting and enhancing the park system’s superlative examples of America’s natural, cultural, and historic heritage. NPCA and its more than a million members and supporters are committed to preserving the most diverse park system in the world for us now and for those who will come after.

Target demographics: Protect and preserve our nation’s most iconic and inspirational places for present and future generations. We celebrate the parks — and work tirelessly to defend them — whether on the ground, in the courtroom or on Capitol Hill.

Geographic areas served: America's National Parks

Programs: Engage, educate, and empower americans: the long-term viability and vibrancy of the national parks depend on a broader, more diverse, committed, and engaged constituency that values the national park idea. To gain broader support for the parks, the association will seek through this strategic priority to create a larger national park community that is engaged, educated, and empowered to protect and enhance our national parks and monuments. This broader community will include non-traditional allies and a broader constituency that more closely represents the changing demographics of america.

protect and restore: the association protects parks from external threats that negatively effect, degrade, or destroy park resources or values, and serves to protect, restore, and maintain park, natural, and cultural resources unimpaired for future generations. The association has offices across the country to ensure that threats to resources at our parks are detected early and solutions to these threats implemented quickly. The association also identifies and cultivates park champions who can advance policies that protect parks and thwart emerging threats.

strengthen and enhance: the association will ensure that the national parks have the money they need to keep parks open, thriving, and in good repair by securing adequate funding for the national park service and identifying additional public and private funding sources. New national parks are added to the system or expanded to tell the full story of america. Through its center for park management the association works with the national park service to promote and enhance the management capacity within the national park service.

Community Stories

1 Story from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters


Board Member

Rating: 5

As an American of African ancestry, I have the relatively unique good fortune of knowing the National Park System from Alaska to Florida. Many of the parks I've visited result from my multiple-term service on the board of NPCA, and I am ALWAYS thrilled to see how the staff in the national parks receive us..they express great appreciation for NPCA and the work we do. I give a lot of my time and resources to NPCA because I believe deeply in the organization's mission. Simultaneously, I am able to connect NPCA with national park leaders at the grassroots level..for example, one of the young men we mentored back in the 90s, from one of the roughest neighborhoods in Los Angeles, is today a National Geographic Emerging Explorer..so NPCA's work spans generations and is echoing into the future...