Protect. Educate. Inspire.

2020 Orvis Impact Report. Because passion for the natural world is the core of our business.

Simon Perkins and guide holding a permit in the waters of Belize.
Simon Perkins cuddling with his dogs inside a vehicle.

Dear Fellow Adventurer,

As anglers and former guides, we’ve been humbled many times by things outside our control. But fishless days are still meaningful time on the water, where we learn something new about the world and ourselves. 2020 was anything but typical, producing many sobering and tragic moments. It also taught us many lessons to help us prioritize the important things in life as we look forward. 


In a year of uncertainty where plans were shelved and belts were tightened for much of it, we’re proud of what we were able to accomplish with you, our customer and fellow outdoor lover. We’ve never been more certain of the importance of our collective community of anglers, hunters, and outdoor enthusiasts to the future of wild places and their accessibility for all. 


For many, this past year marked a first time on the water with a fly rod or in the field with a dog, as more people turned to the outdoors for their health and well-being. We are excited for all their adventures to come and connections to be made in future years. We are also excited for the opportunity for stewardship this new class of 2020 represents. And as we have been for 165 years, we are committed to welcoming this class in, showing them around campus, and teaching them the importance of sharing it, protecting it, and restoring it for generations to come.


Sincerely,


Simon Perkins

President | 3rd Generation Family Ownership

The Impact We Made Together in 2020


48 non-profit organizations supported in 2020


$570,000 raised and donated along with our customers


We signed the Angling for All pledge, committing to equity, inclusivity, and breaking down barriers in fly fishing and the outdoor world. 


Our voices were heard, and the Pebble Mine permit was denied.


Nature

If we are to benefit from the use of our natural resources, we must be willing to act to preserve them.

—Perk Perkins, Orvis board of directors and former CEO

Our History of Commitment

For more than 165 years the Orvis mission has been to guide its patrons to lead more fulfilling lives through a deep personal connection to the adventure and wonders of the natural world. Orvis has been family owned, Vermont based, and committed to conservation since 1856. We have a long history of giving back to our communities and the environment. Here are some more recent highlights.

Orvis commits 5% of its pre-tax profits to protecting nature, advancing canine health and well-being, and supporting the communities in which we operate, and where our associates live.

Our largest grants are Customer Matching Grants, whereby Orvis commits a substantial matching fund for donations solicited from our customers through promotions in our catalogs, stores, websites, social media, emails, and publicity campaigns. These grants offer the additional benefit of bringing strong publicity and endorsement to the project, the value of which often far exceeds the actual dollars raised.


Customer Matching Grant recipients are selected by the Orvis Conservation Committee. Throughout the year, the Committee researches what it believes to be the most compelling issues facing our environment. A decision is made as to what issue to undertake for the coming year, and then Committee members research the organizations doing the most impactful work to address it. Orvis does not accept submissions for Customer Matching Grants without an invitation.

Canine cancer affects 1 in 4 dogs, and half of all dogs over ten years old. Fortunately, in recent years, veterinary scientists have made tremendous research strides—recent studies have led to new research tools, better diagnostics, and improved chemotherapy treatments. But there is more work to be done. That's why The Orvis Company partners with Morris Animal Foundation, a nonprofit organization that invests in animal health science, to support canine cancer research and improve the health of all dogs.


What's Being Done

Since 2009, Orvis and our customers have raised more than $1 million to help fund canine cancer research. The Morris Animal Foundation, the global leader in supporting scientific research that advances veterinary medicine, has used this funding to advance early cancer-detection tests, to implement safer and more effective chemotherapy protocols, and to develop a tumor tissue bank for common canine cancers. To date, Morris has funded 200 canine cancer studies at 28 colleges and universities. The Canine Lifetime Health Project and the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study are among their current veterinary initiatives.


Join the Action

Help create a brighter future for dogs. Show your support today by entering your dog’s photo in our Cover Dog contest, voting for your favorite entries, or donating directly to Morris Animal Foundation.

Learn to fly fish for FREE

We supply all the gear you'll need! At a Fly Fishing 101 class, you'll learn the basics of fly casting and rigging, so you can get out on the water right away. Plus, at the end of the class, you'll receive special offers to make it easier to get the fly-fishing gear you need.

The Orvis Breaking Barriers Award honors an individual who has gone above and beyond to bring new blood into the sport by breaking down barriers and introducing new audiences to fly fishing.

50/50 On the Water inspires women to get out on the water and discover the joys of fly fishing, celebrates female anglers, and provides women with the resources (and gear) they need to make their own fishing adventures a reality.

Orvis is committed to making fly fishing and the outdoors more inclusive.

Orvis’s vision is to inspire the world to love the adventure and wonder in nature. For us, an inspired world is one that is inclusive, equitable, and without barriers. One that is achieved by being vulnerable, acknowledging privilege, exploring blind spots, engaging in uncomfortable conversations, and effecting change.


In the summer of 2020, Orvis became the first company to sign the Angling for All (AFA) Pledge. Created by Brown Folks Fishing, the pledge establishes a commitment and resource for the fishing industry to identify and eliminate barriers for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, creating a more inclusive and equitable sport and lasting change.


“We are honored and grateful to have such a strong partnership with the team at Brown Folks Fishing,” says Orvis President Simon Perkins. “Their mission to build capacity, access, resources, visibility, and a solid community for anglers of color makes the sport stronger, and we are excited to sign the pledge as an acknowledgment of our commitment to this critical work. This is an opportunity for us to explore our own blind spots and unconscious biases and an important step forward in Orvis’s history of passion and commitment to access, inclusion, and stewardship in fly fishing.”

 Ariel view of two people standing in salt flats with a rod in hand.

More than half the intense enjoyment of fly-fishing is derived from the beautiful surroundings and the satisfaction felt from being in the open air.

—Charles F. Orvis, founder of The Orvis Company

Orvis + Brown Folks Fishing logo
Woman smiling while fly fishing in Belize

Angling For All

Orvis’s vision is to inspire the world to love the adventure and wonder in nature. For us, an inspired world is one that is inclusive, equitable, and without barriers. One that is achieved by being vulnerable, acknowledging privilege, exploring blind spots, engaging in uncomfortable conversations, and effecting change. In the summer of 2020, Orvis became the first company to sign the Angling for All Pledge. Created by Brown Folks Fishing, the pledge establishes a commitment and resource for the fishing industry to identify and eliminate barriers for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, creating a more inclusive and equitable sport and lasting change.

Everglades Foundation Logo


Drift boat blazing across the water.

The Everglades Foundation

Raised and Donated over $144K

The Everglades and the Florida coastal system are home to hundreds of plant and animal species, including more than 70 threatened and endangered species. But the historic flow of freshwater feeding South Florida has been altered, discharging billions of gallons of polluted water into two essential estuaries and away from the Everglades, suffocating one of the world's most remarkable ecosystems to the verge of extinction.


Through events and support like Giving Tuesday and matching grant donations, together with our customers, we raised over $144k for our partners at The Everglades Foundation (EF) and their efforts to restore fresh, clean water south to the Everglades and Florida Bay. We also worked with our partners at EF to create Hope for the Everglades, a short film raising awareness of this critical issue through storytelling. 

Trout Unlimited Alaska logo
Underwater photo of salmon in Alaska.

Pebble Permit Denied

After over a decade of perseverance from our customers, partners, hunters, anglers, and outdoor enthusiasts across the country, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers denied a federal permit for the proposed Pebble Mine in 2020. It was a hard fought win for all who value pristine natural resources like Bristol Bay, AK, and the outdoor adventures and economies they sustain. 


Together with our customers and partners through support like Giving Tuesday and matching grant donations, we raised over $46k for our partners at Trout Unlimited (TU) Alaska. 


And together with TU Alaska, we traveled to Washington D.C. to meet with the Army Corps of Engineers, the Environmental Protection Agency, and White House officials to advocate for a pristine Bristol Bay on behalf of our customers, partners, and hunters, anglers, and outdoor enthusiasts across the country. We led and supported awareness and advocacy campaigns, including full page ads in The Wall Street Journal, digital campaigns driving over 45,000 petition signatures in favor of an unspoiled fishery and ecosystem, and supported the film Everyone In Between, a collaboration between Orvis, TU Alaska, Captains for Clean Water, and the Bonefish & Tarpon Trust. 

Orvis Giveback Days
Top view of a person fly fishing in a rock stream.

Orvis Giveback Days

$104,000 raised for on-the-ground organizations

In September, Orvis retail stores along with our customers raised over $100,000 for local Trout Unlimited chapters, Project Healing Waters, pet adoption groups, and Casting for Recovery, supporting local stream restoration projects, creating better lives for dogs, and promoting human health and healing through fly fishing. 

Petfinder Foundation logo
Dog standing on a dock at sunset.

Petfinder Foundation

12,326 Canine Lives Made Better

Together with our customers and partners, we raised over $63,000 to help improve the lives of over 12,000 dogs. All money raised supported shelter dog enrichment programs improving the quality of life for dogs, making them happier, healthier and ensuring that no adoptable pet is euthanized for lack of a good home. 2020 marks the ninth consecutive year that Orvis has supported Petfinder Foundation.

Morris Animal Foundation logo
Dog looking down while wading in deep water with yellow surface grasses.

Morris Animal Foundation

$200,000 To Fight Canine Cancer

Through our beloved Cover Dog Contest, Orvis and our customers raised over $200,000 for the Morris Animal Foundation and their Golden Retriever Lifetime Study. The largest of its kind, the study seeks to better understand why golden retrievers develop forms of cancer and other diseases at such high rates—work that will not only help its namesake but all breeds of dog. Funding supports research at institutions including Cornell University, Cambridge University, the University of Colorado, Denver, and the Veterinary Specialty Hospital, San Diego.

Drone photography of boat navigating through narrow waterway

Since my teenage years going to Trout Unlimited meetings, I have always been concerned with the environment, especially water quality. At Orvis that philosophy is ingrained in our corporate mission. It’s who we are.

—Tom Rosenbauer, Chief Enthusiast, The Orvis Company

Fly Fishing 101 graphic

Nearly 3,500 learned to fly fish for free in 2020 through the new Virtual FF101 initiative.

On average, Orvis teaches 15,000 people to fly fish for free every year through our Fly Fishing 101 (FF101) classes hosted at Orvis retail stores across the country. In 2020, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Orvis took the FF101 program virtual, creating free online programming. Nearly 3,500 learned to fly fish for free in 2020 through the new Virtual FF101 initiative. 


Each FF101, 201, and 301 student receives a free one-year Trout Unlimited (TU) membership. Over the past 10 years, we’ve signed up 10,000 new members with TU, whose mission is to conserve, protect and restore North America’s coldwater fisheries and their watersheds. 

Learn More
Woman at a sewing machine making a COVID-19 mask.

COVID-19 Masks

Beginning in March of 2020, as cases of Covid-19 increased across the country, Orvis began collaborating with local Roanoke partners to produce non-medical grade face masks. In 2020, Orvis employees produced up to 2,000 masks each week, the majority of which were donated to the Roanoke Rescue Mission and the Southwest Vermont Hospital to protect vulnerable populations including the local homeless community and frontline healthcare workers. By year’s end we produced and donated 50,000 masks. We are continuing to produce and donate masks in 2021.

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