Individuals that publicly endorse the National Rifle Association include celebrity board members such as Tom Selleck, Ted Nugent, Oliver North, R. Lee Ermey and Grover Norquist, according to Mother Jones. The NRA has approximately four million members and began as a grassroots organization, but corporate sponsorship has become increasingly important, notes the Atlantic. Between 2005 and 2011, at least 22 gun manufacturers such as Smith & Wesson and Beretta USA endorsed the NRA by giving it financial contributions.
One of the most famous historical supporters of the NRA was actor Charlton Heston, notes the Washington Post. During the election season of 2000, the group was determined to prevent Al Gore from winning the presidency. Heston gave a dramatic speech leading up to one of the most memorable moments in the history of the NRA. The legendary actor was handed a replica of a colonial musket, mentioned that he was especially speaking to Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore, held the gun up and shouted, "From my cold, dead hands!"
As of 2015, corporate sponsors of Friends of NRA include gun companies Daniel Defense, Henry, Gaston and Mossberg, Secure It weapons storage company and Numzaan Safaris, according to the Friends of NRA's website. Gun supply retailer MidWay USA has endorsed and donated to the NRA since 1992, and Larry Pottfield, the company's owner, gives the NRA some of its largest donations.