Ponca City, Oklahoma– The Future Fisherman Foundation has recently named industry pacesetter, Mark Gintert, the new Executive Director. Gintert is an avid outdoorsman and angler with an extensive background in the private business sector both in manufacturing and retailing as a past owner of a successful boat dealership. For the last 5 years he’s served as the National Youth Director and the National Conservation Director for The Bass Federation (TBF); Gintert will continue to hold those positions as well. TBF is the oldest and largest organized grass roots fishing organization in the country with three main principles, Fishing, Youth, and Conservation.
TBF has developed and expanded several industry leading programs to get young anglers involved in fishing. TBF’s Reel Kids Casting Program targets 7 to 15 year olds with skills based casting events. TBF’s Junior Angler Program reaches youth in an adult/junior club mentoring program. The TBF Student Angler Federation, (SAF), engages high school and middle school students nationwide with education based fishing clubs and events. All programs feed into the Association of College Anglers, (ACA), which fosters the growth of collegiate fishing at all college campuses.
“This is a great opportunity for both organizations to grow youth fishing together,” Gintert stated. “It’s going to be a lot of work providing the educational services and equipment needed to get more students involved. However, I’m excited about the future challenges and opportunities. Going forward, we intend to enhance programs such as Hooked on Fishing Not on Drugs, Phys Ed, and C.A.T.C.H in order to help transition students from the classroom to practicing anglers. In some programs, the bell rings and the student’s fishing experience ends with the day. We’ll expand beyond the classroom or one-day derbies and offer multiple ways for students to participate, like with school fishing clubs where they can fish for a variety of species in a wide range of settings. Our collective programs will not only offer encouragement, fun and camaraderie but also the tools to carry the love of fishing for the rest of their life.”
“We’re extremely excited to have Mark Gintert as our new Executive Director,” Future Fisherman Foundation board chair, Kerry Campbell, said. “The successes and growth of the TBF’s Youth Fishing programs under Mark’s leadership are testaments to his passion to teach all children the joys of fishing. Using fishing skills as the incentive, he’s been able to teach our next generation the importance of caring for our resources. As the TBF Youth Director, Mark has been expanding and building relationships with educators nationwide and he understands the importance of working hand-in-hand with educators to ensure we offer the best programs. The opportunity to combine our efforts is the perfect vehicle for reaching more youth that will become lifelong responsible anglers.”
The Foundation is also pleased to announce through the efforts of previous Executive Director, Keith Sutton, and Education Manager, Teresa Rodriquez, the foundation recently secured a grant through the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation to begin at least four regional training seminars across the country. This will once again create great opportunities for educators to get involved with the F3 Programs.
“The Future Fisherman Foundation has provided educational services to over a million young anglers over the years and we’re quickly moving to expand and continue that great tradition with the help of everyone involved in the industry,” Gintert stated.
The Future Fishing Foundation is on the move! With a new office location, new Executive Director, new training seminars and more new announcements to come! The Foundation’s new office will be located at 5998 E. Pleasant View Rd. in Ponca City, Okla., 74604, which is also home to The Bass Federation’s (TBF’s) new office complex and warehouse facility.
About the Future Fisherman Foundation
Established in 1986, F3 unites the sport-fishing industry and a nationwide network of state outdoor educators, national conservation groups and youth organizations dedicated to introducing America’s youth to angling and the outdoors. These efforts help people of all ages have safe and enjoyable fishing experiences that foster conservation ethics. Visit www.futurefisherman.org.