PETA Rep May Join Trump Wildlife Committee as ‘Balancing Voice’

Legal Counsel Delcianna Winders Nominated to Trophy Hunter–Controlled International Wildlife Conservation Council

For Immediate Release:
January 29, 2019

Audrey Shircliff 202-483-7382


The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) has put out a call for nominations to the International Wildlife Conservation Council (IWCC), an advisory board created under President Donald Trump to facilitate and expand trophy hunting under the guise of conservation—and PETA Foundation Vice President and Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders is a nominee. Her nominations, which are available upon request, come from a coalition of more than three dozen environmental and animal-protection leaders.

Federal law requires that the membership of such committees be fairly balanced, but the IWCC is currently stacked with individuals with pro-hunting interests, including leadership from the National Rifle Association, pro–trophy hunting group Safari Club International, and Conservation Force, a law firm that secures trophy-import permits for hunters. Winders’ nominators point out that the overwhelmingly high representation of big-game trophy hunters on the IWCC is contrary to most Americans’ interests and sentiment: The majority of Americans oppose sport hunting generally, and 86 percent oppose trophy hunting of big-game species.

“Animals, animal advocates, and the American public deserve a voice on the committee that will have an impact on the number of majestic wild animals who will be gunned down by trophy hunters—although total control of the committee by non-hunters would be far fairer,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “Delcianna Winders is not only the PETA Foundation’s deputy general counsel but also a prominent animal-law scholar, and she’d bring a tiny bit of the balance required by law to this committee.”

Among other accomplishments, Winders has taught courses on animal law at Vermont Law School and Pace University’s Elisabeth Haub School of Law, and she served for two years as the first-ever academic fellow in Harvard Law School’s Animal Law & Policy Program. Her years of work with PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—includes stopping the FWS from secretly issuing permits allowing holders to harm and harass endangered animals.

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