The National Organization, Trout Unlimited, was founded in 1959 along the banks of Michigan's Au Sable River by a group of 16 anglers who were interested in protecting trout in that and other popular fishing rivers. By 1963, New York anglers established local chapters to carryout Trout Unlimited’s mission of protecting endangered streams and rivers. In July, 1977, the New York State Council was formally incorporated. Today, Council supports over 8,500 members in more than 25 chapters across the State.
The original board of directors were:
- David Brandt (the inventor of the Dave Brandt Tied and True Hackle Gauge) (https://www.tu.org/blog/dave-brandt-catskills-angling-legend-1944-2020/)
- Leon Chandler (Past Council Chairman) (https://www.amff.org/history-makers-leon-chandler-3/)
- Gordon Deitrick (Western NY Chapter)
- J. Wesley Drake (First President of NY TU before incorporation)
- John J. Dwyer ( First State Chairman after incorporation (Founder of the Seth Green and Canandaigua Lake Chapters)
- Lester E. Gillett (https://www2.tu.org/blog-posts/the-origins-of-the-iroquois-chapter-002)
- Donald W. Henderson
- James O'Hern (Iroquois Chapter)
- Morris Radigan (Iroquois Chapter)
- Jack W. Tilghman (Founder and a past-president of the Mid-Hudson Trout Unlimited Chapter in Poughkeepsie, NY)
- Frank Vadala (https://www2.tu.org/blog-posts/the-origins-of-the-iroquois-chapter-002)
Sally Dwyer, wife of John Dwyer, recounted that the board met at her kitchen table in Victor to draw up the plan for incorporating the Council.