Foster Friess speaking at the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland. Photo: Gage Skidmore

JACKSON, Wyo. — Former Wyoming gubernatorial candidate and Jackson homeowner Foster Friess passed away today, May 27. He was 81.

“We are grateful for the wonderful life Foster lived and thankful to the many people who have shared their prayers during his illness. We know many of you mourn with us, and we will have more details soon on Foster’s funeral,” Friess’s family said in a statement.

Friess is best known for being a major Republican donor. He funded Rick Santorum’s 2012 presidential campaign. He also ran for governor of Wyoming in 2018. He received an endorsement from former President Donald Trump but ultimately finished second behind Governor Mark Gordon.

In March, Friess announced on Twitter that he was battling myelodysplastic syndrome, a type of cancer that affects bone marrow.

It is estimated that Friess has given away over $500 million towards philanthropy. The Jackson Hole Children’s Museum recently broke ground on a new outdoor classroom, funded by Foster and Lynn Friess.

Friess was an advocate for “one bill, one subject” and promoted the policy through the Foster’s Outriders program.

Friess is survived by his wife Lynnette, their four children and fifteen grandchildren.


Buckrail @ Lindsay

Lindsay Vallen is a Community News Reporter covering a little bit of everything; with an interest in politics, wildlife, and amplifying community voices. Originally from the east coast, Lindsay has called Wilson, Wyoming home since 2017. In her free time, she enjoys snowboarding, hiking, cooking, and completing the Jackson Hole Daily crosswords.