Minnesota –-(Ammoland.com)- The Minnesota chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers (BHA) has been accumulating an impressive record of awards and recognition for its rapid-fire efforts on behalf of wildlands and wildlife recently. In October 2014, chapter co-chair Erik Jensen was recognized as BHA’s Volunteer of the Month. Then, in November 2015, the chapter received recognition as Chapter of the Month.
Not to be outdone, during April 2016, chapter board member Mark Norquist received BHA’s Sigurd F. Olson Award, which recognizes outstanding efforts in conserving rivers, lakes or wetland habitat. In addition, during April, the chapter was again recognized as BHA’s Chapter of the Month. And most recently, during July 2016, the Minnesota chapter was once again BHA’s Chapter of the Month. As stated in BHA’s newsletter (The Backcountry Beat):
“The Minnesota chapter had a lot going on this month! The chapter turned out members to both U.S. Forest Service listening sessions on the proposed sulfide-ore mining proposals in the Boundary Waters watershed, hosted a Full Draw Film Tour date and are hosting the final BHA-hosted Train to Hunt event outside the Twin Cities on July 30-31.”
“Chapter members, led by all-star volunteer Will Jenkins, brought in more than $4,500 in cash and donations for the Train to Hunt event. Chapter leaders Mark Norquist and Erik Packard both delivered impassioned addresses at the first USFS listening session on the Boundary Waters in Ely on July 13th, eliciting rousing applause. Mark hand-delivered 1,200-plus signatures, collected by BHA, opposing the proposed mines. With the chapter's help, we’ve now compiled nearly 3,000 signatures! … Great work, MN crew!”
Will, Mark and Erik are all Minnesota BHA board members, and they’ve devoted much of their lives to protecting and perpetuating the unparalleled public lands hunting and angling heritage we enjoy in this country. Will Jenkins, in addition to his volunteer duties with Minnesota BHA, started “The Will to Hunt” Blog (www.thewilltohunt.com/) in 2011 to share his passion for the outdoors and working to help conserve wild places.
Mark Norquist is publisher/editor of the Modern Carnivore Blog (www.modcarn.com), founder/owner of GreenHead Strategies, LLC, a filmmaker and executive producer of the “Fish Out of Water” film series, which won the Spirit of Film award at the Frozen Film Festival in St. Paul on February 7, 2016 (watch all three episodes of “Fish Out of Water” at: http://www.sportsmenfortheboundarywaters.org/fish-out-water). Erik Packard, a U.S. Army veteran, served two tours in Iraq and is founder of Veterans for the Boundary Waters (www.savetheboundarywaters.org/veterans).
Chapter co-chairman, David Lien (a U.S. Air Force veteran), said: “Will, Mark and Erik embody the very essence of BHA’s backcountry values and can-do attitude. They’re textbook examples of the breadth and depth of boots-on-the-ground knowledge and passion that all BHA members bring to the wildlands and wildlife conservation arena. We need many more like them.”
The chapter is also hosting its fourth annual Minnesota BHA Rendezvous August 19–21. They’ll be setting up camp in Wild River State Park on the St. Croix River north of Minneapolis-St. Paul near Center City. For additional information, see: http://www.backcountryhunters.org/minnesota_chapter_annual_rendezvous
Formed around an Oregon campfire in 2004, BHA is the sportsmen’s voice for our nation’s wild public lands, waters and wildlife. With members in all 50 states and Canada, including 18 state-based chapters and a chapter in British Columbia, BHA brings an authentic, informed, boots-on-the-ground voice to the conservation of public lands.