Clay Brewer has been chasing bighorn sheep since he was 11 years old.
“My dad spent a lot of time with me and my brothers outdoors,” said Brewer. “I can remember spotting a sheep for the first time and asking my dad if I could chase him. I spent that entire day following in its path. I’ve been chasing bighorn sheep ever since.”
In his current position as Conservation Director and Bighorn Sheep Program Lead for the Wild Sheep Foundation, Brewer is now chasing wild sheep in the western U.S., Mexico and Canada as he oversees wild sheep conservation, management and research activities across the entirety of bighorn sheep range in North America. His career path to his dream job included close to 25 years at the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, along with a bighorn sheep assignment with the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. Brewer credits a mid-life decision to earn a master’s degree at Sul Ross State University as one of the best career decisions he ever made.
“I learned so much while earning my master’s,” he said. “I didn't know what I didn't understand about research, and getting that degree was one of the best things I ever did.”
He is grateful for his grad school experience at the Borderlands Research Institute and pays it forward at every opportunity. Most recently, Brewer received the inaugural Trailblazer Award from the Dallas Safari Club, which came with a $10,000 cash prize to benefit a wildlife conservation project of his choosing. Brewer immediately chose the Borderlands Research Institute, and amplified the gift by partnering with the Wild Sheep Foundation and Dallas Safari Club Foundation to increase the donation to $35,000. From his perspective, it is an investment in the future.
“The Borderlands Research Institute is incredible program that is nurturing the next generation of conservation professionals. Dr. Harveson is an incredible leader who strives for excellence. I can't tell you how proud I am to watch how his program has grown through the years, and it is truly an honor to support him and his students.”