Award Criteria
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FFI Awards Program

FFI Award Criteria

Each year awards are given to various individuals and groups who exemplify the mission and values of FFI. Below is the criteria for each award given, both current and past awards that have been retired.


 

FFI Board Awards of Achievement

 

FFI Award of Distinction (formerly Lapis Lazuli Award)

The ultimate award of Fly Fishers International.  Thus, the consideration for individual achievement is extremely strict.  Services and contribution to FFI must be prominent and extraordinary, and above all, they must be long term (at least 8 years).  They must be significantly above the criteria that would merit consideration for any other award.highest level of recognition bestowed on an individual who has demonstrated. 

The criteria are as follows: 

  • Eight years of service to FFI is required.
  • Service should be voluntary. Time as a paid employee of the Federation, although not totally discounted, would merit minor consideration.
  • Individual should not have previously won the award.
  • To preserve the integrity of this award, it is recommended that it be awarded judiciously and infrequently, but it is not intended that the frequency stipulation deprive a truly deserving individual.
  • This award is the ultimate award of the Federation. Thus, the consideration for individual achievement must be extremely strict. Services and contributions to the Federation must be prominent and extraordinary, and, above all, they must be long term. They must be significantly above the criteria that would merit consideration for any other award.

 

Election shall be by the Executive Committee. The vote shall require a 2/3 majority.  The Chair of the Awards Committee shall be notified prior to the meeting of the Committee to avoid conflict or duplication. Nominations for this award should be made directly to any member of the executive Board.


FFI McKenzie Cup

An award, given annually to that FFI Club which has made the most outstanding contribution on behalf of the FFI.  The criteria are as follows:

  • Must be an FFI member Club with a minimum of three years of continuous affiliation.
  • Awards should be based on cumulative service, but significant activity in the past year is important. A ratio of 70% (past years) to 30% (present year) would serve as a guideline but not be restrictive.
  • Activities and services performed should be primarily on behalf of the FFI. Those functions may have as their primary outlet another organization but ultimately benefiting the FFI should be of secondary consideration.
  • Outstanding contributions are those that are conspicuous in relation to others - consistent contributions over a period of time. Contributions should be defined as those acts that fall within the scope of Article II, Section I of the Constitution (objectives of the FFI).


FFI Fly Fisher of the Year (formally known as Federator of the Year)

An award presented annually to that individual or director who has demonstrated unusual devotion to the FFI and through outstanding contributions has benefited FFI as a national organization or international organization.  The criteria are as follows:

  • A minimum of five years membership and service to the FFI is required. 
  • Service should be voluntary. Time as a paid employee of the FFI should be given little consideration.
  • The individual should not have previously won this award. 
  • This award should be for achievements that are FFI- wide in scope - as opposed to regional or local.
  • Continuing service is of prime importance. Therefore, considerations generally should be weighed 70% for cumulative service and 30% for achievements in the past year.
  • Devotion and contributions to FFI should be consistent with FFI objectives, and be superior to those of other candidates.


FFI Fly Fishing Skills Education Award

The Fly Fishing Skills Education Award is intended to recognize outstanding educational and instructional programs in the full array of fly fishing skills. The award (or awards) is given to an individual, group, or organization that has made extraordinary contributions to the area of fly fishing skills education.

All nominees will be routed by the Awards Chair to the VP Education.  Evaluation of each nomination will be conducted by the Education Committee.  Recommendations from the Education Committee will be forwarded by the VP Education to the Awards Committee. 

The Fly Fishing Skills Education Award criteria are as follows:

  • This award should be based upon a single extraordinary contribution or on a continuous prominent effort promoting comprehensive fly fishing education.
  • Extraordinary contributions are those that are superior and conspicuous in relation to others and consistent with the philosophies of the FFI.

The eligibility criteria are as follows: 

  • Eligibility for this award would be for individuals, national or local Clubs, groups or organizations and national or state departments or agencies.
  • The individual, group, or organization should be affiliated with the FFI, but not required.
  • The individual, group, or organization should not have previously won the award.
  • This award need not be an annual award, but would be given on an "as merited" basis.
  • Up to two awards may be given in a single year – one to an individual, and another to a group or organization.  


FFI Buz Buszek Memorial Award

An award certificate presented annually to that person who has made significant contributions to the arts of fly tying.  The critieria are as follows:

  • Must be a FFI member.
  • Can be an amateur or professional. (This is a difficult area. What an amateur does out of sheer love and enjoyment, a professional must do to make a living. Nevertheless, it is often the professional who, through their skills, offers more to the advancement of the art. Therefore, it will be necessary to make some judgment on intent. Obviously, if the primary intent is to teach and share knowledge, it should merit serious consideration.)
  • Areas for judgment are: tying skill, creativity or innovation, and sharing knowledge by teaching or publication.
  • Advancement of the arts need not be on a national scale, it can be at local or regional levels.
  • Participation in FFI is not a prerequisite, but any such activity as benefits the Federation should be highly regarded.
  • Achievements and contributions should promote the advancement of the arts and qualification should be superior to other candidates.


FFI Dick Nelson Fly Tying Teaching Award

This award is to be presented to an individual who excels in teaching the art of fly tying to all skill levels. The criteria are as follows: 

  • Must is a member of FFI in good standing for a minimum of five years.
  • Must be able to demonstrate and teach the varied skills of fly tying not necessarily an innovator. But able to teach techniques developed by others or themselves to tiers of all skill levels.
  • Must have experience teaching both in group and individual environments.
  • Service to the Federation may either be at the national, council or club level.
  • The person should embody the spirit of the Federation, imparting both only a love of fly tying, but also of fly-fishing and the conservation of the resource.
  • The person should have not previously won this award.


FFI Darwin Atkin Memorial Fly Tying Achievement Award

This is an award created to recognize an IFFF member whose long-term contribution to fly tying is widely recognized and respected. This award is for outstanding achievement and demonstrated commitment of the person in significantly advancing the craft and art of fly tying.  The criteria are as follows:

  • Candidate must be an FFI member in good standing.
  • The nomination document should identify specific reasons why the person is being nominated. As written in the award description, "long-term contribution to fly tying" should be identified. "Long term" may be interpreted differently by BOG evaluators. We are not putting a specific minimum number of years on this as the interpreted value of the contribution may also be considered in the evaluation. Contributions might be inter-connected, related in a progression, or consist of many stand-alone contributions. "Contribution to fly tying" may also take on many different aspects. Examples to consider might include:
  • Books written on fly tying patterns, techniques, related entomology of importance to fly tiers, river journals identifying information important to fly tiers, and material handling
  • Development of materials having long term usage by tiers, i.e. synthetics, genetic hackles, worthy substitutes. 
  • Development of techniques or products to produce results considered important to tiers, i.e. special tools and how to use them.
  • Providing a venue or opportunities for fly tiers to display their work. An example might be a person providing extensive long-term leadership in organizing fly tying venues, or direction on displaying the art of fly tying. It is not a requirement that the person being nominated be a fly tier. "Widely recognized and respected" adds more aspects to be considered.

These terms are open to individual BOG interpretations. Think in terms of widely recognized as opposed to a very local or regional application. The "widely respected" refers to the contributions being considered as worthwhile by, and is used by a large portion of the fly tying community. Letters of support from other persons could help in providing additional information about a nominee's impact on the total fly tying community. These supportive documents are encouraged to verify the widely recognized and respected contributions of the nominee. Essentially, you need to convince 2/3 of the BOGs these contributions by the nominee fit the widely recognized and respected requirement. A key part of the nomination document should address the "outstanding achievement and demonstrated commitment" in "significantly advancing the craft and art of fly tying." Again, what may be outstanding to one person may be mediocre to another. Your job as a nominator is to justify to 2/3 of the FTG BOGs the achievement as outstanding. When we use the term demonstrated commitment we are talking about actually producing an entity to evaluate. Some people are full of great ideas but they do nothing with them. We are looking for those individuals that "walk the talk" in advancing the craft and art of fly tying. This award will be presented at the annual meeting


FFI Lee Wulff Award

An award presented to recognize the business side of fly-fishing. The criteria are as follows: 

  • A business that has shown outstanding innovation in the fly-fishing industry through their products.
  • A business that has shown outstanding stewardship for water and fisheries resources.
  • Or a combination of both of the above criteria.
     

FFI Roderick Haig-Brown Award

The award is presented to an author of a book, books or a combination of articles and books that embody the philosophy and spirit of Roderick Haig-Brown including:

  • A respect for the ethics and traditions of fly-fishing.
  • An understanding of rivers, the inhabitants and their environments with an emphasis on things natural, concern for the whole, the philosophical side as opposed to just plain fishing.
  • The literary quality of the work must be high.
  • A review committee of three people with backgrounds in publishing, writing and literary criticism shall review nominees and make a recommendation to the Awards Committee.
  • Candidates must be living.

The award need not be given every year, but only when a truly fitting nominee comes forward.


FFI Ambassador Award

Presented annually to that fly fisher, who meets certain high standards of sportsmanship, fishing skill and streamside etiquette in taking and conserving game fish internationally.
 

FFI Silver King Award

The FFI saltwater award is named after the highly prized saltwater trophy, the Tarpon. The "Silver King Award" shall be presented to an individual who has made extraordinary contributions to the sport of saltwater angling over an extended period of time. The criteria are as follows: 

  • A nominee may or may not be a professional in the sport of saltwater fly-fishing.
  • A nominee must fulfill the following qualifications:
    • Must be a member in good standing of FFI.
    • Must have a history of unselfish promotion of saltwater fly-fishing.
    • Must have practiced the sport of saltwater fly-fishing for many years.
    • The nominee must also meet one or preferably more of the following requirements as applied to the sport of saltwater fly fishing: Be an educator, conservationist, innovator, writer, speaker or expert in the sport.

The award need not be presented annually, but should only be presented when a truly deserving individual is nominated.  Nominations for the Silver King award shall be directed to the Awards Committee Chair. Nominations received by the deadline will be forwarded to the Chair of the Saltwater Committee for that Committee's recommendation of the most qualified nominee.


FFI Conservation Award

An award or awards, to an individual, group or organization that has made extraordinary contributions to the conservation of our fishery resources. The criteria are as follows:

  • The individual, group or organization need not be affiliated with FFI.
  • Eligible for this award would be individuals, national or local Clubs, groups or organizations and national or state departments or agencies.
  • This award should be based upon a single outstanding contribution or on a continuous prominent effort promoting conservation.
  • The individual, group or organization should not have previously won the award.
  • This award need not be an annual award, but would be given on an "as merited" basis.
  • Extraordinary contributions are those that are superior and conspicuous in relation to others and consistent with the philosophies of FFI.

All nominations will be routed by the Awards Chair to the VP Conservation for evaluation of each nominee and the VP Conservation will make recommendations to the Awards Committee.
 

FFI Leopold Conservation Award

An award presented to an individual for outstanding contributions to fisheries and land ecology. The criteria are as follows: 

  • The person should have followed in his/her career work an adherence to the land ethic espoused by Aldo Leopold, and demonstrated by Aldo Leopold, Luna Leopold and A. Starker Leopold and the other Leopold family members: a recognition of the value of all ecosystem parts, not only fish and wildlife but all biotic and abiotic components that are an integral part of it.
  • Membership in FFI is not a requirement for this award.

All nominations will be routed by the Awards Chair to the VP Conservation for evaluation of each nominee and the VP Conservation will make recommendations to the Awards Committee.


FFI Council Leadership Award

An award presented to that council president who has demonstrated unusual devotion to FFI and through outstanding contributions has benefited FFI as a national or international organization. It is not expected that this will be an annual award. Criteria are as follows:

  • A minimum of ten years membership and service to FFI is required.

  • Service should be voluntary. Time as a paid employee of the FFI should be given little consideration.
  • The individual should not have previously won this award.
  • This award is to recognize leadership accomplishment at the council level.
  • It is expected the recipient will be an active or past council President.
  • Continuing service is of prime importance. Therefore, considerations generally should be weighed 70% for cumulative service and 30% for achievements in the past year.
  • Devotion and contributions to FFI should be consistent with FFI objectives, and be superior to those of other candidates.

This award is to recognize leadership accomplishment in the areas of Club and Council fly fishing activities and education, conservation, and membership growth at the council level. This award will be awarded by the Executive Committee of the Board of FFI.

FFI Lifetime Achievement in Fly Casting Instruction Award

This award is presented to individuals who have made significant, long-term contributions to fly casting instruction.  Contributions may include teaching, innovation in fly casting techniques, writing, motivation and sharing their knowledge of teaching to advance goals of the Casting Instructor Certification Program.

FFI Mel Krieger Fly Casting Instructor Award

This award, honoring Mel Krieger a well-known figure in the instruction of fly casting and author of the original Fly Fishers International Certified Casting Instructor Program, is presented in recognition of those who have made significant contributions to the FFI Certified Casting Instructor Program, have dedicated themselves to fly casting instruction and have shared their knowledge with others.


PRESIDENT'S PIN AWARD

An award given to those individuals who have assisted the President during his term of office. Appreciation and recognition for service is made by the President. The pins are presented at the President/Awards Banquet.

 
FFI COUNCIL AWARDS OF EXCELLENCE

An annual award presented to those individuals in each Council who have made outstanding contributions to FFI at the local or regional level. Criteria are determined by each Council President and the award is given in the name of FFI by each Council President.
 

THE VIRGINIA BUSZEK PERRY FLY TIERS ASSISTANCE AWARD

This award is a cash grant of $250 to pay the expense of a fly tier to attend the Show that would otherwise not be able to attend. The Fly Tying Chair of the Show Committee administers this award.

 

ROBERT J. MARRIOTT'S SCHOLARSHIP GRANT

A cash grant in the amount of $500.00 given annually to a deserving student in undergraduate or graduate biology or similar field who is specializing in fishery management, cold or warm waters, fresh water or salt. Application is to be made to the Awards Chair detailing academic background and overview of postgraduate work. Applications will be forwarded to VP Conservation for review and recommendations to the Awards Committee for final decision.

SCOTT SANDITEN YOUTH CLUB EDUCATION FUND

This grant has been established with the FFI Foundation. The interest funds generated will be used to support youth oriented education projects sponsored by FFI clubs. Applications for money from the Sanditen Fund for club sponsored youth education projects are available from the FFI VP of Education. Nominations will be forwarded to the VP of Education and the Education Committee for recommendations to the FFI Foundation.
 

LAFONTAINE AQUATIC ENTOMOLOGY SCHOLARSHIP

This grant was created to honor Gary LaFontaine and the aquatic entomology he loved and spent his life studying. A Fund has been established in the FFI Foundation, to support graduate students (MS or PhD) doing a research project in aquatic entomology. A resume, a short synopsis of the project, and letter of recommendation from his or her faculty advisor are requested for each candidate. Nominations will be forwarded to the VP of Education and the Education Committee for recommendations to the FFI Foundation.
 

ADDITIONAL AWARDS

May be established by the Awards Committee with the approval of the Executive Committee. A memorial life membership requires a five thousand dollar endowment fund. The Committee may present other special awards. Your suggestions or recommendations should be presented to the Awards Committee in writing as soon as possible. Be mindful that the awards are only as meaningful as the degree of participation in the nominating process. To achieve a meaningful course in selecting deserving individuals, every club should seriously consider submitting nominations. Any nomination should be accompanied by supportive statements and data and sent to the Awards Chair.


CASTING BOARD OF GOVERNORS' AWARDS

The Casting Board of Governors bestows four awards each year. They are as follows:

  • Lifetime Achievement in Fly Casting Instruction Award
  • Mel Krieger Fly Casting Instructor Award
  • Governor's Pins
  • Governor's Mentoring Award
  • Floyd Franke Award for Contributions to CICP
  • Jay Gammel for Fly Casting Instruction Award


Any nominations for these awards will be forwarded to the Awards Committee of the Casting Board of Governors for consideration. To find more information about the casting awards please visit the Casting Awards page of our website.
 

NOMINATION DEADLINE & ONLINE SUBMISSIONS

All award nominations are due by April 1 of each year.  Nominations must be submitted using the online nomination form which can be found by clicking here.

 

QUESTIONS

Awards Adminstrator
awards@flyfishersinternational.org

 

 

Download and Print 

 

FFI Awards Criteria  (PDF)

FFI Awards Procedures (PDF)

FFI Awards Nomination Form

Darwin Atkin Memorial Fly Tying Achievement Award (PDF)