Outdoor Policy Leader Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation Welcomes New Members to Board of Directors

Last week, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) Board of Directors (Board) welcomed new members to the Board rounding out a full slate of individuals representing various industries who all share in the mission of working with the Foundation’s leadership and staff to protect and advance our outdoor heritage. This latest round of members include Peder von Harten, President & CEO Nicholas Air; Brandon Maddox, Founder & CEO Silencer Central; and Vishak Sankaran, President Outdoor Accessories & Golf Vista Outdoor Inc. Together, these gentlemen not only bring decades of diverse experience to the CSF Board of Directors but also a deep passion for conservation and the sportsmen’s way of life.

“Just as the outdoor way of life is a tradition that is passed from generation to generation, so too is the privilege of serving on the CSF Board of Directors,” said Board Chairman Richard Childress. “I look forward to the opportunity to work with all of our new members, who will bring fresh perspectives from each of their industries to the Board of Directors.”

“The CSF Board of Directors provides crucial oversight and linkage between the Foundation and many of our Mission Partners,” said CSF President and CEO Jeff Crane. “The addition of these new members will continue to strengthen the Board, and by extension, allow CSF to continue in its purpose as the most respected and trusted sportsmen’s organization in the political arena.”

Peder von Harten is the President of Nicholas Air, a rapidly growing, yet boutique private jet membership program based in Oxford, Mississippi. Additionally, he is also the Founder of Piper Ranch Media which helps brands manage growth strategies while also producing several publications devoted to the outdoor lifestyle, hunting, ranching, American heritage, and the rural way of life. Outside of work, Mr. von Harten is an active hunter, rancher, investor, and conservationist.

Brandon Maddox is the Founder and Owner of Silencer Central, a leader in the firearm sound suppression industry and one of America’s fastest-growing companies. Mr. Maddox is not only an accomplished business owner and investor, but he is also a passionate sportsman whose sound and recoil reduction products have helped enhance the experience for thousands of hunters and shooters.

Vishak Sankaran is the President of Outdoor Accessories and Golf at Vista Outdoor Inc. Mr. Sankaran is a hunter and recreational shooter who has spent decades leading businesses in outdoor gear and sporting goods, healthcare, and consumer products. As part of his portfolio at Vista Outdoor Inc., he helms over a dozen hunting and shooting brands with deep ties to the sporting conservation community.

Also, during the meeting, outgoing CSF Board of Directors Chairman Simon Roosevelt was appointed to the CSF Honorary Board of Directors, joining a distinguished group of sporting-conservation icons. Since 2014, Mr. Roosevelt has served on the Board of Directors, holding the positions of Member, Vice-Chair, and most recently, Chairman of the Board. CSF thanks Mr. Roosevelt for his service to the organization and his advocacy on behalf of America’s 55 million sportsmen and women. 

Earlier in 2023, the Board of Directors also welcomed New Member Mark Smith, President and CEO Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. Mr. Smith has served in leadership positions for over a decade and brings a variety of professional experience to the Board, from his time in the world of consulting to his roles in operational management. Additionally, Mr. Smith is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys hunting, fishing, recreational shooting, and snow sports.

Leading the Board in 2023 is Richard Childress Racing Chairman and CEO Richard Childress as Chairman; Pure Fishing CEO Harlan Kent as Vice-Chair; Bekun, LLC and Berverst, LLC Managing Director Francisco Bergaz as Secretary; and Rather Outdoors, LLC CEO Ken Eubanks as Treasurer. For further information regarding 2023’s Board leadership, please see this announcement.

Founded in 1989, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) is the informed authority across outdoor issues and serves as the primary conduit for influencing public policy. Working with the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus (CSC), the Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus (GSC), and the National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses (NASC), CSF gives a voice to hunters, anglers, recreational shooters, and trappers on Capitol hill and throughout state capitols advocating on vital outdoor issues that are the backbone of our nation’s conservation legacy. For more information on CSF’s policy work, visit www.congressionalsportsmen.org.

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