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Volunteer Spotlights

This year's National Convention & Sport Show theme is "Hunters: Champions of Conservation." Tell us how you support conservation through your role as a hunter and you may be selected to be part of the 'It's My NWTF' campaign. Send your answer, your name and your picture to Make sure the subject line says "It's My NWTF".

Rhonda Lehman

Brenda Valentine

Craig White

Terry Greer

Bobby Mead

Steve Calderwood

Ken Dozer

Missy Letterman

Dan Zerr

Jim Wells

Shane Hall

Doug Noteboom

Gary Reeder

Thad Bellow

Gary Lister

Dean Schueler

Andrew McKean

Paul Waldon, Idaho

Pattie Bing, Oklahoma

Terry and Sara Robinson, Tennessee

Karen Dillon, Michigan

Randy Stafford, Louisiana

Shane Hendershot, Ohio

Kenneth Weiss and Kenneth "Kenny" Weiss Jr., Alabama

James Wattenbarger, Tennessee

Brian Sloan, North Carolina

Ashley Hartley, Florida

Butch Knapp, Wyoming

Hometown: Cody, Wyo. Home Chapter: North West Wyoming Local Chapter, Cody, Wyo. NWTF member since 1992

George Denka, South Carolina

Hometown: Beaufort, S.C. NWTF Member Since: 1973 Membership Level: Diamond Life Family Members: George and wife Martha have two kids, Ansley and Alex, and two granddaughters, Hayden and Hollis. Notable Fact: George lends his expertise as judge of the NWTF Decorative Call Competition.

Barry Arrington, Virginia

Hometown: Bedford, Va. Home Chapter: James River Chapter, Bedford, Va. NWTF Member since 1997

Jim Stauft, California

Jim Stauft, California Hometown: Rohnert Park, Calif. Home Chapter: Petaluma Poults Chapter in Petaluma, Calif. Notable Fact: Jim is the president of the Petaluma Poults Chapter and serves on the California state board. He stays active working with youth and doing conservation and habitat work through the NWTF, California Fish and Game, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, California Wild Fowl Association and California Deer Association.

Mathew Lea, Kentucky

Mathew Lea, Kentucky Hometown: Louisville, Ky. Home Chapter: Derby City Chapter, LaGrange, Ky. Special Information: Matthew is a junior at the University of Louisville, studying mechanical engineering. Family: Matthew's mother Susan is a constant source of inspiration, and his father Alex is an accomplished turkey hunter and Matthew's mentor for all things conservation.

Duwayne Miller, North Dakota

Duwayne Miller Hometown: Devils Lake, N.D. Home Chapter: Lake Region Longbeards, Devils Lake, N.D.

Pam Carter, Kansas

Pam Carter Hometown: Wichita, Kan. Home Chapter: Trail Blazers, Wichita, Kan. Family: Husband John Special information: Pam and her husband own a transportation reselling business. She enjoys riding jet skis and spending time with her 7-year-old grandson, Jordan.

Jason McAnally, Texas

Jason McAnally, Texas Hometown: Canadian, Texas Home Chapter: Canadian River Chapter, Canadian, Texas Family: Jason and his wife, Sonia, have been married for 16 years. Their sons, Talon (14) and River (12), are avid hunters who have recently turned their focus to archery. NWTF Member Since: 2002

Dale Tribby, Montana

Dale Tribby, Montana Home Chapter: Prairie Gobblers, Miles City, Mont.

Judy Kennemer, Texas

Judy Kennemer, Texas Home Chapter: East Texas Chapter, Longview, Texas Member Since: 2002

Lyndon Ruediger, Missouri

Hometown: Hermann, Mo. Home Chapter: Rhine Valley in Hermann, Mo. Wife: Janice Notable Fact: Lyndon serves on the Missouri State Board of Directors and helps host one of the nation's best JAKES events.

Jeff Cowen, Texas

Hometown: Belton, Texas Home Chapter: Tri-County Longbeards, Temple, Texas NWTF Member since: 1998 Notable Fact: Jeff has served on the Texas State Board for eight years and as vice president for the Southwest Texas region for five years.

Loyd Stafford, Louisiana

One of Loyd Stafford's great joys is sharing his 50-plus years of turkey hunting experience with a new generation of hunters.

Linda Layser, Virginia

A lifelong love of the outdoors and a passion for sharing the hunting tradition with others keeps this retired nurse and dedicated NWTF volunteer as busy as ever. If you're a lady looking for a great time outside, read as Linda describes the NWTF's Women in the Outdoors program.

Lynn Worwood, Utah

Lynn Worwood of Nephi, Utah, credits his brother for getting him involved in turkey hunting and the NWTF - both passions he's pursued as president of the Salt Creek Gobblers chapter and NWTF Utah's JAKES program chairman. Read on to learn more about why this volunteer dedicates his time to the NWTF and what he thinks makes a JAKES event so successful.

Anita Hardin, Kentucky

Anita Hardin of Lawrenceburg, Ky., coordinated the first statewide Women in the Outdoors event in Kentucky and says seeing the smiles on peoples' faces keeps her motivated to volunteer with the Federation. Read to on learn why this dedicated NWTF volunteer joined the Federation and what NWTF programs are most important in her opinion.

Hank D'Auria, New York

Hank D'Auria of Livingston Manor, N.Y., is a member of the award-winning Sullivan County Longbeards Chapter and was voted Outstanding Member of the Year for New York in 2008. Read on to find out how Hank got started with the NWTF and what makes his local chapter so successful.

Terry Thompson, Arkansas

Terry Thompson of Rison, Ark., got hooked on turkey hunting more than two decades ago and got hooked on the NWTF after attending his first fundraising banquet. Join us as we talk to this NWTF Arkansas state board member about his favorite hunting memory, and why he keeps renewing his NWTF membership.

John Thompson, South Dakota

Don Heckman, Pennsylvania

Don Heckman has been an NWTF volunteer for 34 years. He watched the NWTF grow from a fledgling group to the gold star organization it is today. We talked to Heckman about why he attended the very first NWTF Pennsylvania state chapter meeting and why he's stayed with us for so many years.

Tim Samples, Tennessee

Mark Hill and Curt Mrotek, Minnesota

Ed Tanczos, Sr., Pennsylvania

Jeanette Limback, Missouri

Hometown: LaMonte, Mo. Now resides in Warsaw, Mo. Jeanette has been married to her husband, Rick, for 32 years. They have one daughter and two beautiful grandchildren: Carlie, 4 and Nicholas, 2.

Harold Daub, Pennsylvania

Hometown: Halifax, Pa. Harold and his wife, Marie, have been married for 28 years. They have one daughter, Megan, age 20, and two dogs: a beagle, Cooper, and a black lab, Katie. Harold also has four brothers: Barry, Brad, Dan and Rusty. Harold's father, Ron, introduced all of the boys to hunting.

Emmett Wells, Texas

Born and Raised In: Cameron County, Texas. My first turkey hunt was 14 years ago. It was with another of our chapter board members, Robert Cackley, whom I've known since we were kids. Like most beginning turkey hunters, I was instantly hooked!

Brian Smith, Maine

Hometown: Machiasport, Maine. "I live right on the ocean and can see Canada from here!" Smith says. Brian and his wife, Joyce, have been married for 23 years. Brian hunts with his Dad and brothers regularly.

Linda May, Georgia

I grew up in Roswell, Ga. With two older brothers and lots of kids in the neighborhood, we played outside constantly.

Katrina Skrapits, Pennsylvania

When Katrina Skrapits discovered the Women in the Outdoors program, it was a life-changing event. Afterward, she immersed herself into reaching out to other women by becoming an event coordinator, which earned her the NWTF's 2008 Annie Oakley Award.

Phil McCarthy, Massachusetts

Wife of 7 years, Anne. "I couldn't be more appreciative of her patience with my passion for the sport," Phil says. Phil also hunts a lot with his cousin, Justin Torelli. "I called in his first gobbler for him and he has now exploded into a regular turkey slayer!"

Jon Leonard, Utah

I started turkey hunting in 1979 while I was working in the Bridger-Teton National Forest in Jackson, Wyo. Having hunted big game, upland game and waterfowl all my life, spring turkey hunting seemed like a good way to enjoy hunting at the same time getting away from the cold and snow which lingers in Jackson Hole through April and often into May.

Sherry Hill, Missouri

My first exposure to the WITO program was in 2002, when I saw an ad in the newspaper for an education seminar for ladies on outdoor skills. I attended the event, made new friends, joined the committee and have been an avid supporter of WITO ever since.

Leann Bunn, Oklahoma

My ultimate goals in partnering with the NWTF and WITO were to foster conservation and get women involved in the outdoors. Women are the mothers of our future in conservation, literally. They are the mothers of children, and children are our future.

Greg Furlong, Florida

"I want to mention my late grandfather, Jack Revels. He was a great cowboy and hunter. No one loved and respected the outdoors that God created more than he did," Greg notes. "I also had an uncle we called 'Uncle E' that would spend all turkey season in a little pop-up camper in the woods. I thought he was crazy until I went on my first spring turkey hunt in 2005!"

Jim Williams, Kentucky

Daughter, Lisa; grandson, Kyle; granddaughter, Kaci; son-in-law, Kelly, and wife of 44 years, Pat. "She's my best friend and hunting partner, and I couldn't make it without her," Jim says.

Lee Johnson, California

I've been doing this for 16 years, and it's rewarding to see where the money goes, especially our outreach programs

Earl Griswold, Indiana

I spent most of my waking hours as a youth either in the sawmill helping my uncle or hunting and fishing. With seven younger brothers and sisters, it was a way of life and I learned quickly that hunting and fishing kept me out of trouble.

Dorothy McCarver, Texas

At our chapter's first WITO event ten years ago, I shot a shotgun for the first time. I was 49 years old. A few months later, my husband gave me a 20-gauge Red Label Ruger Over/Under shotgun for my 50th birthday. I am now approaching my 60th birthday and enjoy competing in skeet, trap and five-stand competitions and have become a certified shotgun instructor and help coach our county's 4-H Shooting Sports Project group. Three more shotguns have been added to my gun collection. My granddaughter calls me "Shotgun Granny!"

Frank Brazynetz, Michigan

I've been an NWTF member from 1978 to 1988, then re-joined in 1990 and have been a member ever since, for a total of 29 years. My wife Sandy has been a Women in the Outdoors member for more than 10 years. She supports me 110% in everything I do for the NWTF, and also accompanies me in the woods. She'll be finishing up her Grand Slam this spring in Florida (hopefully)!

Glenn and Chris Nace, Mississippi

The calling! Just getting a bird to respond to a call is a thrill to me. It's also both fun and frustrating at the same time when you get a gobbler that hangs up on you. I've been there many times, and the turkey generally wins when that happens.

Al Hatman, Tennessee

I have a stressful job as an air traffic controller, so being outside in God's creation just recharges me. It helps me relax. Being outdoors is a wonder for me and helps me face the rest of life's challenges.

Dale Bounds, Texas

I've been turkey hunting for 25 years, and have considered myself a wild turkey freak for 15 years. The anticipation of closing the deal while hunting a gobbler is about all I can stand!

Larry Rohrbaugh, Pennsylvania

I would say that you've got to make it as fun as possible for everyone. We go all-out on getting a lot of things for our banquet, so our Sportsman's Raffle table is always full. We feel if everyone goes home with something, they will be satisfied. We do the same with our JAKES event - make it a fun day, and be sure everyone goes home with something.

Cheryl LaRosa, Ohio

It's funny...I was dating a volunteer and he got me involved. I went to an event in Lancaster, Ohio, and then I helped on a committee for the Johnstown event. Long story short: he dumped me and I got to keep the Women in the Outdoors! You want the truth? It's the best thing I ever got out of any relationship with a man!

Redding Chapter

We enjoy doing anything that helps kids to get involved with the outdoors. However, our members are most excited about the Turkey Hunters Care Program. Through the program, we have been fortunate enough to donate more than a ton of frozen domestic turkeys each year to a local food bank as well as one of the local 4-H chapters. These turkeys are then dispersed to the hungry through these great groups. We look forward to this each year. It's a great program because it is different than the conservation efforts we are known for and it lets us reach a different demographic of our community.

Souris River Basin Longbeards

This year, we donated 265 frozen domestic turkeys to community groups in our area. Most of them went to our local Community Action Group, which knew the families who needed the help. We started working in Turkey Hunters Care four years ago, and it has really grown in support. We raise the money through donations and raffles, and purchase the frozen turkeys from local grocery stores to help those who need a little bit of extra support. And, every year, we receive thank you cards from people who are so grateful.

Wilcox County Longbeards

Our chapter has put a lot of resources into the JAKES program. Keeping our youth interested in hunting is critical to the future of conservation. We partner with the Conservation Department to conduct youth dove hunts and we give turkey calls to every JAKES member that attends the banquet.

Mike Lowder, Illinois

Early in his life, Mike Lowder realized the importance of wildlife conservation. That realization has stayed with him ever since, which is one of the reasons Lowder received the 2008 Roger M. Latham Award from the NWTF.

Billy Yargus, Missouri

Last February, Billy Yargus competed against the best turkey callers in the country to become the 2008 Wild Turkey Bourbon/NWTF Grand National Calling Champion. We sat down with him to give you the scoop on last year's calling champ.

Bev Leigh III, Alabama

Bev Leigh III co-hosted the NWTF's first Diamond Life Dinner, and was an early member of the Full Strut Club. Find out why he felt the NWTF deserved to be included in his last will and testament.

Kenny Odom, Mississippi

For 15 years, Kenny Odom has promoted wild turkeys, conservation, hunting and the NWTF in the Magnolia State. Find out why Odom feels that the NWTF is worthy of his support.

Mike Brown, Albany, Ga.

Last year, Mike Brown sponsored and attended 60 Hunting Heritage Super Fund banquets. Find out why he joined the NWTF, what trends he's seeing and which are his favorites in this Volunteer Spotlight, a new feature of News From the Roost.


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