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  • IGFA | Bernard "Lefty" Kreh
    responsible for introducing Lefty to fly fishing together they fished Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries pioneering many of the techniques and patterns now used almost universally by saltwater fly fishers including Lefty s Deceiver Initially designed to catch striped bass the effective pattern is actually an innovative tying style that can be modified to almost any game fish The Deceiver is perhaps the best known saltwater fly pattern in the world and in 1991 the U S Postal Service honored Kreh s creation with a postage stamp It was Brooks and Tom McNally outdoor editor of The Chicago Tribune who encouraged Lefty to start writing and his career officially began in 1951 with a column in The Frederick News Post Expert with all types of tackle and a skillful hunter as well Lefty filled his column with simple but solid information Local sportsmen began to rely on his advice and as his readership grew so did national and international interest in his work By 1954 he was writing for 11 different newspapers From 1964 to 1972 Lefty made his home in South Florida where he ran The MET The Miami Metropolitan Fishing Tournament wrote for The Miami Herald and together with Karl Wickstrom and Vic Dunaway started Florida Sportsman magazine in 1969 While in Florida Lefty did much to promote the catch and release ethic Catch and release was not a very popular concept in 1964 especially among guides But Lefty showed them how the sizes of popular sport fish were declining and how release fishing would help their business and over a period of time he won them over Lefty Kreh is the consummate fisherman Always looking for new and better ways to do things he believes that tradition is good for fly fishing so long as it doesn t stand in the way of progress He has traveled the world extensively all 50 states every Canadian province Iceland and much of Europe South America and the South Pacific learning something from the top guides and fishermen in each location Lefty loves to share his skill and knowledge with anyone interested in learning He was one of the first to make personal appearances around the country demonstrating his fly casting technique A gifted and witty speaker with a seemingly endless supply of stories and jokes he is known for his infectious enthusiasm incredible energy and charismatic personality He is the best teacher of fly casting I have ever seen Frank Woolner said A 10 minute session with Lefty is better than 10 years of trial and error experimentation He is a master of trivia and knows more shortcuts than anyone in the business a superb showman who can produce the goods In the early 1970s Kreh returned to Maryland to become outdoor editor of The Baltimore Sunpapers retiring from the newspaper in 1993 But the concept of retirement is a difficult one for Lefty When he s not fishing and traveling he is giving casting demonstrations instruction or seminars

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-Kreh.aspx (2016-02-11)
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  • IGFA | Francesca LaMonte
    FISHERIES RESEARCH MANAGEMENT IGFA Great Marlin Race Billfish Conservation Act Conservation News Resources Socioeconomic Resources Regional Fisheries Bodies Information Exchange Position Statements Educate IGFA School of Sportfishing Observer Training IGFA Junior Anglers Fishing Summer Camp Education and Outreach Programs Release Recommendations Education Staff Volunteer Opportunities Resources Videos PHOTO GALLERY IGFA Publications E Newsletters Species Database Captains and Guides IGFA Mobile Weigh Stations Support Join or Renew Make a Gift Shop Upcoming Events Advertising Opportunities Contact Donor Opportunities Donor Societies Member Discounts Membership Benefits Francesca LaMonte Click here for more IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame videos 1895 1982 1998 Inductee Francesca LaMonte spent her career performing extraordinary services for fishing as a scientist author and editor and founding member of the International Game Fish Association Without LaMonte s cutting edge marine research and literary contributions modern efforts to salvage habitat and preserve saltwater species would be set back untold years perhaps years too late During her career as Associate Curator of Fishes at the American Museum of Natural History AMNH LaMonte helped produce a stream of definitive books on the world s fresh and saltwater species co editor of Field Book of Fresh Water Fishes of North America in 1938 author of North American Game Fishes in 1945 co editor of Game Fishes of the World in 1949 co editor of the Fisherman s Encyclopedia in 1950 author of Marine Game Fishes of the World in 1952 and Giant Fishes of the Ocean in 1966 At the same time LaMonte planned and supervised installation of many of AMNH s massive exhibits She also kept up an amazing number of professional affiliations with organizations such as the New York Academy of Sciences the American Association for the Advancement of Science the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists and the Society of Systematic

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-LaMonte.aspx (2016-02-11)
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  • IGFA | Michael Leech
    Fort Lauderdale Billfish Tournament he wrote the rules for and ran the first ever nighttime swordfish tournament A keen interest in fisheries brought him to the 1982 Snook Symposium organized by IGFA President Elwood K Harry and it was here that Harry suggested Leech stop by the IGFA office In January 1983 Mike Leech was appointed IGFA Executive Director a position he held for 10 years Housed in the old beachfront Holiday Inn on Las Olas Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale the organization s paid staff numbered less than a dozen and handled all business from membership to world records on manual typewriters Ever so gently Mike began nudging his frugal mentor into the 20 th century Change was not without controversy however the addition of a fax machine generated serious discussion about the cost of a second phone line while the arrival of computers proved stressful for staff accustomed to typing everything on duplicate carbon forms In addition there were major events on the IGFA s agenda Mike played a pivotal role in the planning of the First World Angling Conference a groundbreaking international symposium held in France in September 1984 At the same time he had begun collecting items for a new fundraising endeavor called the International Auction and Banquet Working with a small committee headed by IGFA Trustee Al McClane the inaugural event was held in January 1985 at the Flagler Museum in Palm Beach McClane a well known gourmet planned the food which was served in Plano tackle boxes and included an appetizer of cherry smoked marlin But the auction was a resounding success raised 80 000 and over the next 17 years generated millions for the IGFA s programs Three weeks after Harry s death in 1992 the Board of Trustees appointed Mike Leech the IGFA s fifth President In that role over the next decade Mike focused on his mission to establish the IGFA as the world s most respected and authoritative fishing organization With membership a priority he worked on benefits adding new categories discounts line testing and scale certification services and new Clubs Thousand Pound Bass Snook Grand Slams and four catch weight to line class By 2003 All Tackle Records existed for 832 species up from 452 ten years earlier the six pound line class category discontinued in 1982 was restarted and a State Freshwater Line Class Program had been introduced Leech created the IGFA Offshore and Inshore World Championships in 1997 the Junior Angler World Record Program and Championship were launched and the Certified Captain Weigh Station Observer and No Marlin on the Menu Programs followed Keeping IGFA members Representatives and the press updated on conservation issues was imperative and he did so in monthly Hot News bulletins and quarterly reports Seven years after Elwood Harry s passing his dream of a permanent location for the organization and his beloved library was realized with the opening of the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame Museum in January 1999 The Hall of Fame

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-Leech.aspx (2016-02-11)
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  • IGFA | Al Lindner
    s most respected and influential educators and industry leaders the Lindner name became synonymous with fishing excellence Al grew up in Chicago part of a family that loved to fish and by the time he left for Vietnam he had won a few local tournaments When he returned at the age of 22 he opened a guide service in Brainerd Minnesota and that same year fished the second B A S S tournament Al didn t get a single bite the first day but Bill Dance returned to the dock with a huge stringer of bass Al had fished the same lake at the same time under the same conditions Clearly he couldn t make excuses about the fish not biting because the fish were biting They were always biting And that realization was life changing In 1968 Al and brother Ron developed the Lindy Rig which revolutionized live bait fishing Lindy Tackle was sold in 1973 but the Lindy Rig remainspopular and productive After Al made his first walleye film with Virgil Ward the Lindners decided they could create their own so they shot a pilot with a rented camera took it to the AFTMA show where they found a sponsor by the name of Rapala a sponsor to this day and soon had a show running on local TV In the early 1970s Al was spending 300 days a year on the road guiding summers on Minnesota lakes winters on Sam Rayburn in Texas and competing in and often winning bass and walleye tournaments He talked fishing everywhere to anyone who would listen His seminars were especially well received he came armed with drawings charts and graphs and folks swarmed around after the presentation asking how they could acquire these informative materials In response In Fisherman was born The first magazine shipped to 10 000 readers in June 1975 Early issues called study reports were technical and rigorous aimed at hardcore anglers Even the title In Fisherman suggested selectivity a fisherman who was in and privy to insider news The early days of the magazine were a time of development and experimentation the beginning of the how to genre of fishing literature Within a year a decision was made to adopt a multi species format and the company s motto became Teaching North America How to Catch Fish is our Business The revolutionary magazine caught on immediately It contained a new vocabulary for fishing concepts and scientific principles and terms now part of the lexicon like slop pattern post frontal conditions structure and presentation first appeared in print Al helped formulate a system for categorizing lake river and reservoir types and for patterning fish response by calendar season In Fisherman s F Fish L Location P Presentation S Success formula worked for any species anywhere and was adopted universally The magazine wasn t published on a regular schedule didn t have standard features like Letters to the Editor and didn t carry advertising for the first four years

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-Lindner.aspx (2016-02-11)
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  • IGFA | Gary Loomis
    enthusiasm of its founder By 1995 Gary Loomis had spent a major portion of his life fishing the rivers of his home state and he knew it was time to give something back to his favorite waters That something was Fish First a nonprofit organization dedicated to restoring dwindling salmon and steelhead runs to Washington s Lewis River system Fish First s mission is To restore native Pacific Ocean salmon and steelhead runs to levels sufficient enough to support responsible harvest by commercial tribal and noncommercial fishermen With Loomis at the helm Fish First has become a working model for river basin stewardship and has earned national recognition for its efforts Insuring the future of the nation s migratory fishes remains paramount to Gary and he continues to speak out about the issues of over harvest and the importance of supporting conservation groups We will lose the fish he says and our generation will be blamed for not saving them Gary Loomis is a life long fishing advocate His contributions to recreational angling to the fishing industry and to conservation are legion and his ingenuity and visionary rod making techniques are highly regarded He is the recipient of numerous honors including the 2005 American Sportfishing Association s prestigious Future of Fishing Award which honors individuals for their novel approaches to increasing fishing participation In eighth grade Gary was given a class assignment What do you want to be when you grow up and why At that very young age Gary chose fisheries as his future career because I like working outdoors and working with fish and trying to improve fish life When asked to describe the responsibilities of his chosen vocation Gary wrote One of the duties is preserving the wild life of fish by planting fish where they are needed and will do the most good Though more than fifty years have passed since those words were written his passion for our native fish and for recreational angling has not diminished For that the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame recognizes Gary Loomis 1941 2007 Inductee Gary Loomis could not find a fishing rod he was happy with so he created a company to build the very best one possible for himself Before long the nameG Loomis had become synonymous with some of the finest fishing rods in the sport And they were available to everyone It began with Gary s love of angling Born and raised in Centralia Washington he fished the rivers of the Cascade Mountains frequently A self proclaimed steelhead bum he studied the species exhaustively and continually refined his angling techniques After high school Gary spent four years in the Navy as a machinist and the next ten years working for a machine shop that manufactured specialized equipment for lumber mills In 1974 Gary began working for Lamiglas rods in charge of their rod blank production facility It was during his early years at Lamiglas that Loomis pioneered carbon fiber technology In 1980 he started Loomis

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-Loomis.aspx (2016-02-11)
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  • IGFA | Helen Lerner
    RESEARCH MANAGEMENT IGFA Great Marlin Race Billfish Conservation Act Conservation News Resources Socioeconomic Resources Regional Fisheries Bodies Information Exchange Position Statements Educate IGFA School of Sportfishing Observer Training IGFA Junior Anglers Fishing Summer Camp Education and Outreach Programs Release Recommendations Education Staff Volunteer Opportunities Resources Videos PHOTO GALLERY IGFA Publications E Newsletters Species Database Captains and Guides IGFA Mobile Weigh Stations Support Join or Renew Make a Gift Shop Upcoming Events Advertising Opportunities Contact Donor Opportunities Donor Societies Member Discounts Membership Benefits Helen Lerner Click here for more IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame videos 1902 1979 1998 Inductee Helen Lerner was a world class angler but more important than her phenomenal angling career is the work that she did along with husband Michael Lerner to found the International Game Fish Association and to advance marine science Beginning in 1936 in association with the American Museum of Natural History the Lerners organized and financed seven major scientific expeditions which traveled the world to gather information on giant saltwater game fish During these trips Helen and Mike hauled in specimens all caught by rod and reel which the Museum s scientists dissected on the spot or at a nearby makeshift laboratory Never before had scientists been provided access to such prime specimens This ground breaking research created an unprecedented foundation of scientific information about the diet and migratory patterns of the ocean s game fish As an angler Helen Lerner was noted for her finesse with light tackle as well as heavy She took many white marlin and tarpon on 6 and 9 thread lines and scores of bonefish on 3 thread She has held a number of world records and achieved a number of impressive firsts for women she was the first to take a bluefin tuna on the European continent

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-Lerner-H.aspx (2016-02-11)
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  • IGFA | Michael Lerner
    Fisheries Bodies Information Exchange Position Statements Educate IGFA School of Sportfishing Observer Training IGFA Junior Anglers Fishing Summer Camp Education and Outreach Programs Release Recommendations Education Staff Volunteer Opportunities Resources Videos PHOTO GALLERY IGFA Publications E Newsletters Species Database Captains and Guides IGFA Mobile Weigh Stations Support Join or Renew Make a Gift Shop Upcoming Events Advertising Opportunities Contact Donor Opportunities Donor Societies Member Discounts Membership Benefits Michael Lerner Click here for more IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame videos 1891 1978 1998 Inductee Michael Lerner s towering contributions to sportfishing are among the greatest of any of the early pioneers of big game angling He is the founder of the International Game Fish Association which held its first meeting at the American Museum of Natural History in New York on June 7 1939 In the 1930 s and early 40s Lerner and his wife Helen also a world class angler fished for blue marlin at Bimini striped marlin and swordfish off Chile black marlin in Australia and New Zealand swordfish off Peru and tuna off Nova Scotia Lerner s distinction among all other greats of angling can be summed up in one word science Lerner possessed the skills the enthusiasm and the vision required to create major scientific research opportunities As a founder of the national chain of Lerner s clothing stores he also had the ability to finance his ideas and he was generous Beginning in 1935 Lerner developed a relationship with the scientists of the American Museum of Natural History Over the next six years the Lerners organized financed and led expeditions under the Museum s auspices to Cape Breton Bimini Australia New Zealand Peru Chile and Ecuador The expedition parties included scientists from the Museum and provided unprecedented opportunities to study fresh whole specimens of large game

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-Lerner-M.aspx (2016-02-11)
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  • IGFA | Darrell J. Lowrance
    Lowrance shared his love of fishing with his two sons Darrell and Arlen In the 1950s catching fish remained a hit or miss proposition even with improvements in tackle Darrell one of the first inland skin divers knew that in any given body of water fish were generally found in schools and usually positioned themselves near underwater structure and or baitfish That information convinced father and son that an instrument capable of showing anglers where to concentrate their efforts was possible and made a lot of sense During the summer of 1957 using relatively new transistor technology Carl and Darrell conceptualized a portable depth sounder with the ability to clearly show individual fish By December of that year they had in hand the world s first transistor sonars built to their specifications but there were serious problems with the quality of the units produced by a West Coast company In June 1958 the Lowrances contracted with another electronics firm to build and deliver 1 000 units before the end of the year and these products also were plagued with major reliability and performance problems So Darrell and Carl decided to redesign the sonar fishfinder and manufacture it themselves and by September 1959 they were shipping out their green Fish Lo K Tor also known as the Little Green Box LGB Darrell became the President of Lowrance Electronics in 1961 and a few years later the company moved from Joplin Missouri to Tulsa Oklahoma In 1968 he made his first trip to Europe to investigate distribution opportunities Ultimately Lowrance Electronics had distributors in 68 countries worldwide employed 2 500 people and manufactured and sold over one million units per year making them the world s largest marine electronics manufacturer Darrell pioneered many significant firsts and received numerous patents as he introduced new breakthrough marine electronics technology In 1982 both Lowrance s Eagle line and the first computerized paper graph fishfinder appeared in the late 1980s devices using Loran C radio navigation receivers were introduced and in 1991 the first receivers incorporating Rockwell GPS technology were released As more and more effort went into research and development Lowrance Electronics strengthened its leadership position and set the pace for the entire industry in volume technology and quality New innovative systems were introduced every few years all made with a fanatical dedication to excellent performance long lasting reliability and exceptional value Darrell was totally involved in the company the products and the customers At Lowrance both executives and engineers worked on in water testing of current products and developing others for future release Realizing that most equipment problems resulted from installation and operation issues Darrell ran educational seminars to ensure that dealers knew Lowrance s products inside and out And he frequently met with outdoor writers so they could accurately explain and promote Lowrance s products in print A member of ICCAT s Advisory Committee and a leading advocate of the U S tackle industry Darrell championed the American Fishing Tackle Manufacturers Association s

    Original URL path: https://www.igfa.org/Museum/HOF-Lowrance.aspx (2016-02-11)
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