Marbut: Will UM and Enviro Groups Return Tainted Wyss Cash?

The University of Montana Foundation is investigating the extent of the relationship between the university and the Wyss Foundation. Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for the controversial American Prairie Reserve says the organization will not return any donations.

This, after the breaking news this week concerning the sex abuse claims against the Swiss billionaire who funds several environmental groups here in Montana.  

As head of the Montana Shooting Sports Association, Gary Marbut has sparred over policy with several of the enviro groups funded by Wyss.     

Marbut says any group (like the Montana Wildlife Federation, Hellgate Hunters and Anglers, Trout Unlimited) that received money from Hansjorg Wyss should return the funds:

MARBUT: They should be challenged to either return the money or share the taint attached to the money.

It’s like Hillary (Clinton) accepting money from people who throw gays to their death from rooftops, and stone women to death for having been raped.

Questions are also being thrown towards The University of Montana, and the American Prairie Reserve (which has been buying out ranches in Eastern Montana).

Regarding any ties between The University of Montana and the Wyss Foundation, here’s what Cary Shimek with university relations sent me via e-mail Wednesday:

SHIMEK: Melissa Wilson, the communication person for the UM Foundation, said they are looking into this. She is having someone investigate UM’s involvement with the Wyss Foundation. When we have more info, we will let you know.

As for the American Prairie Reserve, they will be holding on to the cash.  That’s according to Hilary Parker, the communications director for the American Prairie Reserve: 

PARKER: The foundation is a donor to the project, but not one we think is fair to classify as “one of the main backers” of our project. In fact, I did the math this morning and the foundation’s contribution amounts to just 3.5 percent of our overall fundraising totals.

Should APR return the money from Wyss?

PARKER:  Because we wish to honor the Wyss Foundation’s wishes that this project become a reality, we are not prepared to return the donation.

Neither Ben Lamb nor Clayton Elliott, who both have ties to enviro groups funded by Wyss, have responded to questions concerning ties with the Swiss billionaire.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *