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Turtle and Tortoise Newsletter, 2000, 3:26
© 2000 by Chelonian Research Foundation

Turtle and Tortoise Newsletter

Organizational Profile: Tortoise Trust USA

Darrell Senneke
Director Tortoise Trust USA, 4N710 Sawmill Trail, Saint Charles, Illinois 60174
E-mail: rednine@earthlink.net

June 2002 Update: The Tortoise Trust USA has become the World Chelonian Trust. They are no longer connected to Tortoise Trust International and information given below is no longer correct. Look for a new organizational profile of the World Chelonian Trust in the next issue of TTN.

The Tortoise Trust USA was founded in 1998 as a spin off from Tortoise Trust International headquartered in the U.K. The reasons for this were to better serve the rapidly expanding North American membership base and to better focus on issues of regional interest. The relationship between the two organizations is an interesting one. While independent, they still share a web site, a newsletter and a close working relationship. The Tortoise Trust USA is a 501c3 non-profit organization. The Board of Trustees is composed of people with expertise from the husbandry, research, veterinary and legal arenas. As an indication of our intention to be global in scope while also being directly involved and responsive to regional issues the 13 Trustees hail from nine states and three countries.

We are actively pursuing partnerships with herpetological societies and turtle clubs across the United States, offering our expertise and support in the ongoing effort to protect and succor chelonians in both in-situ and ex-situ efforts in North America and elsewhere. We will continue to forge alliances in the area of turtle and tortoise rehabilitation; actively seeking qualified groups and individuals in the interest of joint effort. TTUSA is working with these people as a networking facilitator, knowledge resource and, in some circumstances, sponsor.

In the area of education we offer our experience and materials to further the care of chelonians in captivity and the preservation of wild populations. A small part of this is by participation at educational poster shows as well as the distribution of free care sheets at major reptile shows across the United States. Often at these shows we share tables with other organizations to promote our shared areas of interest. The shared web site has a large volume of care sheets and articles free for viewing or download by anyone regardless of membership status.

We see a bright future of cooperation ahead and wish to encourage contacts from all interested parties. A basic membership in the Tortoise Trust USA is 20$/year. Members receive the international quarterly newsletter as well as the TTUSA insert of approximately the same size. In addition to this we offer our members husbandry information, the opportunity to participate in field trips, seminars and workshops. Those wishing memberships may join on-line at http://www.tortoisetrust.org via credit card or by use of a printable form.