The IIF was formed in 2001 by a group of largely zoo-based professionals that had been actively providing funding and other resources to iguana conservation programs, primarily in the Caribbean. The group organized in response to the perennial shortage of funds needed to support critical iguana conservation projects. To ensure effective impact, the IIF works in tandem with the IUCN SSC Iguana Specialist Group (International Union for Conservation of Nature Species Survival Commission), whose responsibility it is to ensure that the threats facing endangered iguanas are both understood and abated. While the ISG is “long on expertise” it is short on financial resources, hence the need for a separate group to assume responsibility for fund-raising. The ISG is one of more than 100 Specialist Groups organized through the IUCN SSC and provides backbone scientific advice to conservation organizations, government agencies, and other IUCN members. Members of the ISG are leaders in the field of iguana conservation and provide status assessments and assign conservation priorities for all iguanine lizards. The close relationship between the IIF and the ISG ensures that funding decisions are based on the best available science and reflect the needs of the species most in need of conservation.