Honorees include Tim “Mountain Man” Guraedy from the television series Duck Dynasty, MidwayUSA owners Larry and Brenda Potterfield, Missouri Lieutenant Governor Mike Kehoe, National Wild Turkey Federation and the vital partnership between our state’s conservation agents and law enforcement officers.
Jefferson City, Mo. – September 10, 2018 – With its third annual National Lewis & Clark Conservation Awards ceremony September 22, 2018, the Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation (MCHF) will recognize individuals and organizations that lead the charge for the appreciation and conservation of our natural resources in Missouri and beyond. Appropriately, the banquet will take place by the Missouri River, along Lewis and Clark’s route, at Missouri National Guard’s Ike Skelton Training Center in Jefferson City, Mo. at 6 p.m.
“We are proud to host this event as a way to recognize national and state conservation leaders and organizations that go above and beyond to support our conservation legacy,” says Ken Babcock, chairman of the MCHF board. “It is our mission to support the goals and objectives of the Missouri Department of Conservation and this fundraising event enables us to back a wide variety of conservation projects. Plus, we think it’s fitting to hold this event on National Hunting and Fishing Day.”
Tim “Mountain Man” Guraedy, who starred on the television series Duck Dynasty and wrote the book Keepin’ a Slow Profile, will be honored with the Corps of Discovery National Conservation Award. This award honors individuals dedicated to conservation at a national level. An avid outdoorsman, he’s been sharing his love of the land for years. Even when he was a young boy, he took kids fishing, hunting and camping when their own parents wouldn’t take them. He is actively involved in charity events, specifically C.A.S.T. (Catch A Special Thrill) for Kids, a foundation that helps children with special needs and disadvantages enjoy a day of fishing.
“I wasn’t expecting this award and it’s an honor to receive it,” says Guraedy. “I can pass it down through the generations, just like my dad passed along to me a love of hunting and fishing and I passed that along to my son, who will also pass the love of the outdoors to his children. It will look good on my wall!”
Larry and Brenda Potterfield, owners of MidwayUSA, an internet retailer of shooting, hunting and outdoor products, will receive the Governor’s State of Missouri Conservation Award. Missouri Governor Mike Parson hand selected this dynamic couple because they reflect the spirit of conservation, show outstanding leadership in conservation and have positively contributed to conservation principles and programs in Missouri.
The MidwayUSA Foundation, founded by the couple in 2007, is involved in helping communities and organizations raise money for education and youth shooting activities. Additionally, they developed the Youth Wildlife Conservation Experience (YWCE), a program designed to provide an opportunity for high school students across the U.S. learn about conservation, ethical hunting practices and wildlife management.
In 2015, Larry and Brenda were presented with the Beretta Conservation Leadership Award at the inaugural Beretta and SCI Foundation Conservation Leadership Award Gala. That same year they were also presented with the John L. Morris Award, by the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies, for their extensive contributions to wildlife conservation. In 2017, NRA Publications honored Larry and Brenda Potterfield with the 2017 Golden Bullseye Pioneer Award. Also in 2017, Larry and Brenda were awarded the Peter Hathaway Capstick Hunting Heritage Award at the Dallas Safari Club. Larry and Brenda received the prestigious C.J. McElroy Award from Safari Club International in 2018.
Lieutenant Governor Mike Kehoe, who was recently appointed lieutenant governor after a prestigious career as senator in the 6th Senatorial District and serving as majority floor leader, will receive the Pat Jones/York Spirit of the Wilderness Award. First given to Pat Jones in 2016, this award embodies the exploratory spirit of entrepreneurs and honors individuals who have dedicated their lives to supporting conservation and natural resources throughout Missouri. Pat and her late husband Edward “Ted” Jones Jr., who laid much of the groundwork for the Katy Trail, created a lasting legacy of conservation and investment in Missouri to protect the state’s natural resources for the enjoyment of future generations.
As senator and businessman, Kehoe has been honored by many organizations, including the Missouri Cattleman’s Association and the Missouri Association of Electrical Cooperatives. He earned Missouri Community College Association’s Distinguished Legislator Award and is in the Automotive Hall of Fame.
“Like Mountain Man, this award is a wonderful surprise and an honor for which I feel unworthy,” says Kehoe. “The outdoors – hunting, fishing and camping – have always been important to me. Whether it is the camaraderie of the opening day of deer season, catching crappie on the banks at the Lake of the Ozarks, or camping in one of Missouri’s awesome state parks, conservation and the outdoor sports are part of the fabric of Missouri. I understand our Missouri values are directly related to our outdoor heritage, and I will continue efforts to uphold and defend this heritage personally, on our family farm, as well as representing all Missourians in Jefferson City. I am grateful to the Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation for their important work across Missouri, as well as for this prestigious award.”
The National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) – Missouri Chapter will be presented with the Sacagawea Community and Partnership Conservation Award. This award goes to an organization focused on exceptional community and partnership building resulting in progressive changes in conservation programs. The Missouri Chapter of NWTF strives to conserve over 300,000 acres of wildlife habitat, recruit 20,300 hunters and improve hunting access for all Missourians.
“Our work centers around partnerships and it is such an honor to be presented with this award in front of this crowd – the who’s who in conservation,” says John Burk, district biologist for Missouri and Illinois for the National Wild Turkey Federation.
A special partnership reception and program will be held at 4 p.m. to honor the important partnership between Missouri Department of Conservation’s conservation agents and the state’s law enforcement officers. Agents and officers work closely together to enforce state laws and keep our citizens safe. Police and sheriff departments will receive these partnership awards for their contribution and support of conservation.
The National Lewis & Clark Conservation reception at the Missouri National Guard’s Ike Skelton Training Center (2302 Militia Drive, Jefferson City, Mo.) will begin at 6 p.m., with the awards banquet starting at 7 p.m. Tickets are $125 per person or $1,000 for a table of eight, and may be purchased by September 14 at mochf.org or by calling 800.227.1488.
This celebration is made possible by the generosity of the following supporters:
Wilkerson & Reynolds Wealth Management
Piney River Brewing Company
Pinckney Bend Distillery
St. James Winery
Jim Lewis Tire Pros