FFI Awards Ceremony
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FFI 2023 Awards Ceremony

FFI 2023 Awards Ceremony

Recording Now Available

Fly Fishers International (FFI) is proud to announce the recipients of the 2023 FFI Awards of Achievement. These awards acknowledge individuals and organizations who demonstrate the highest levels of accomplishment, dedication, and contribution to preserving the legacy and future of fly fishing for all fish in all waters. Awards reflect FFI’s three focus areas of conservation, education, and community, and include additional recognition for leadership, literature, and contribution to various fly fishing skills

If you missed the awards ceremony that was held online October 18, 2023 you can view the recording by clicking the link below.

Watch the Recorded Ceremony

FFI congratulates this year’s award recipients

FFI Award of Distinction for Leadership and Service
Tilda Evans, Colorado
This award is the ultimate award of Fly Fishers International.  Thus, the consideration for individual achievement is extremely strict.  Services and contribution to FFI must be prominent, extraordinary, and significantly above the criteria that would merit consideration for any other award.

FFI McKenzie Cup
Georgia Women Fly Fishers, Georgia
This award given annually to that FFI Club which has made the most outstanding contribution on behalf of the FFI.

FFI Fly Fisher of the Year
Tom Logan, Florida
This award presented annually to an 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.

FFI Lifetime Achievement in Fly Casting Instruction Award
Dave Barron, Wisconsin
Mac Brown, North Carolina

Molly Semenik, Washington
This award 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 Buz Buszek Memorial Fly Tying Award
Dutch Baughman, Texas
This award is named in honor of Wayne “Buz” Buszek who developed a retail business during the mid-1900s where he established a standard of excellence for fly tying materials and more importantly, the many excellent fly patterns he developed that include the Western Coachman and Old Gray Mare that continue to inspire the highest skills in fly tying today.  This award, likewise, is presented to individuals who have demonstrated highest skills in fly tying and made significant contributions to the preservation of the artform of fly tying.

FFI Council Leadership Award
Leigh Ann Swanson, California
This award presented to a Fly Fishers International Council President who has demonstrated unusual devotion to FFI and through outstanding contributions has benefited FFI as an International organization.

FFI Conservation Award
Mark Rockwell, California
This award presented to a person, group, or organization that has made extraordinary contributions to the conservation of our fisheries resources in the past year.

FFI Fly Fishing Skills Education Award
Chris Williams, Louisiana
This award is 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.

FFI Women’s Community Development Award
Marlene Huston, Minnesota
This award is presented to an individual, group, or organization who has demonstrated unusual devotion to increasing the diversity of the FFI community by expanding the involvement of women. This award is to recognize leadership and service on the regional, national, and/or international level.

FFI Roderick Haig-Brown Award
Steven Hawley, Oregon
Roderick Haig-Brown was an avid fly fisher, pioneer conservationist, and acclaimed author of many books on, rivers, fishes, and fly fishing.  This award is presented to a fly fishing author whose work embodies the philosophy and spirit of Roderick Haig-Brown, particularly a respect for the ethics, traditions of fly fishing and an understanding of rivers and their inhabitants.

FFI Leopold Conservation Award
Dr. Robin Wall Kimmerer, New York
Aldo Leopold, known as the “Father of Modern Wildlife Management”, was a conservationist, forester, philosopher, educator and writer, best known for his concept the “land ethic”, which calls for an ethical, caring relationship with nature.  This award is presented to an individual honoring them for a lifetime of fisheries conservation work.

FFI Mel Krieger Fly Casting Instructor Award
Jeff Ferguson, Louisiana
John Van Derhoof, California

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.