Fly Rod Crosby Outdoor Lifetime Achievement Award
The Fly Rod Crosby Outdoor Lifetime Achievement Award is presented annually by Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to individual who is dedicated to the stewardship and wise use of Maine's natural resources and who has been active in the Maine outdoors for a lifetime.
The Fly Rod Crosby Outdoor Lifetime Achievement Award honors not only the annual recipient, but also recognizes Cornelia "Fly Rod" Crosby, and her work in promoting and showcasing Maine's outdoors.
Crosby is well known as Maine's first registered guide, a program that she worked hard to establish, but she was also an outdoor mentor, and an ambassador for the state. For 15 years, she wrote an outdoors column in the local newspaper, the Phillips Phonograph, in which she detailed her outdoor adventures, passing on tips and tales that helped others enjoy the outdoors. She organized Maine sporting exhibits at national sportsman's shows in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia, showcasing the wonders of Maine's rich outdoor resources, and of course, she guided, sometimes introducing people to their first taste of the Maine outdoors, and for those more experienced, helped fine tune their skills.
To be eligible, nominees must have hunted, trapped, and fished in Maine for a combined total of 40 years. For example, to meet that requirement an individual may have fished for 20 years, trapped for 10 years, and hunted for 10 years; or could have fished for 30 years and hunted for 10 years. Ideal candidates would also be active in mentoring, teaching, or instructing outdoor activities.
Nominations should include the nominees name, address, phone number, photograph and a few paragraphs about the individual, their experience in the Maine outdoors, and an explanation of why they are a deserving candidate. The nominators contact information should also be included.
Nominations must be submitted between January 1 and July 1 of the calendar year and can be sent by email to Emily MacCabe at Emily.MacCabe@maine.gov or by mail to 353 Water St, SHS 41, Augusta, Maine 04333.
2023 Fly Rod Crosby Outdoor Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient – Jack Gibson
Along with being an avid angler and hunter who has passed on his passion to family and friends, Jack has worked tirelessly in the community to protect and conserve the outdoors so that these outdoor opportunities will be available to all for generations to come.
Jack grew up on a farm in Union, where in his spare time between farm chores and school, he would always find time to go fishing and hunting. He went to veterinarian school in Pennsylvania, and when he proposed to his wife Gail, he did so under the condition that they move to Maine once they completed veterinarian school.
Jack and Gail ran a successful veterinarian practice in Skowhegan, and along with sharing his passion for the Maine outdoors with his family, he worked tirelessly to protect natural areas in the central Maine area for all to enjoy.
Jack became one of the founding members of the Lake George Regional Park, where he served as president from 1994 to 2003, and under his leadership the park grew with trails, public access, and community programs such as camps where he taught kids how to fly fish, as well as a variety of other outdoor skills.
Jack serves on the board of the Kennebec Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited, is a board member of the Natural Resources council of Maine, the native fish coalition, and the Pierce Pond Watershed Trust. He has spent countless hours working to ensure that Maine's outdoors are protected and available to all. Jack has been a member of the Somerset Woods Trustees since 1994 and is currently president. During his time there and with his leadership, the group has conserved over 5,000 acres, providing access to the public for a variety of outdoor recreation opportunities, as well as ensuring that these woods, waters, and wildlife will always be protected.
Over the years, we have honored many deserving individuals whose impact on friends and family could fill books.
- 2015 Harland Hitchings and Joseph Boudreau
- 2016 Gary Cobb, Jim Martin, and Oscar Cronk
- 2017 Carole Dyer and Gabriel Giguere
- 2018 Dana Johnson and Roger Milligan
- 2019 Charlie Mann and George Smith
- 2020 (awarded in 2021) Dan and Sally McAllister
- 2022 Galen Ruhlin
- 2023 Jack Gibson