EDGEFIELD, S.C. – Ralph Martone of Pennsylvania received national recognition from the National Wild Turkey Federation as recipient of the Roger M. Latham Sportsman Wild Turkey Service Award for his dedication to the NWTF mission.
“Accepting this award is the culmination of a more than 40-year journey that began as a chance meeting with Roger Latham,” Martone said. “That chance meeting set me on my life’s course focusing on conservation and the study of the natural world. Looking back now, I realize how much influence that encounter with Latham had on my career and my life. With Roger Latham as my role model, I have been fortunate to earn advanced degrees in biology, physics, economics and education. Following Latham’s lead, I have worked diligently to promote the National Wild Turkey Federation’s mission. Since retiring seven years ago, the NWTF has become my full-time pursuit. Many thanks to the Federation’s wonderful and dedicated people; they are my extended family.”
Martone received one of five Roger M. Latham Sportsman Wild Turkey Service awards presented at the 45th annual NWTF Convention and Sport Show, held virtually in 2021.
Martone has been a staunch supporter of the NWTF mission for 21 years, holding numerous positions throughout his time with the organization, including president and treasurer at both the local and state level.
Martone’s dedication to conservation is also evident in the additional roles he maintains outside the NWTF, including Pennsylvania Federation of Sportsman and Conservationists, Pennsylvania Outdoor Writers Association, Pennsylvania Deer Association and the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
Contributing countless time and resources, Martone has worked tirelessly over the years to benefit the NWTF mission and NWTF programs, including JAKES, Women in the Outdoors, Wheelin’ Sportsmen, Wild Turkey Woodlands and regional habitat programs.
“Ralph’s dedication to the NWTF is unfaltering,” NWTF CEO Becky Humphries said. “His desire to eat, sleep and breathe the NWTF mission has undoubtedly made an impact, not just in Pennsylvania but on a national level, too.”
The NWTF presents Roger M. Latham Sportsman Wild Turkey Service awards to members who are not employed as professional wildlife managers but have made significant contributions to wild turkey conservation.
About the National Wild Turkey Federation
When the National Wild Turkey Federation was founded in 1973, there were about 1.3 million wild turkeys in North America. After decades of work, that number hit a historic high of almost 7 million turkeys. To succeed, the NWTF stood behind science-based conservation and hunters' rights. Today, the NWTF is focused on the future of hunting and conservation through its Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt. initiative – a charge that mobilizes science, fundraising and devoted volunteers to conserve or enhance more than 4 million acres of essential wildlife habitat, recruit at least 1.5 million hunters and open access to 500,000 acres for hunting. For more information, visit NWTF.org.