TULSA, Okla. — Would you like to hear your club's name read at the 2013 Bassmaster Classic in Tulsa? The winning clubs in the 2012 Berkley Conservation Institute Awards program will be announced there, and representatives will be awarded a prize.
The awards are for the best conservation project and the best angler recruitment/retention project conducted during 2012. The Berkley Conservation Institute awards $2,000 cash for the best conservation project and $1,500 in fishing gear for the best recruitment/retention project.
Last year’s winners were the York Bassmasters and the Salt City Bassmasters. The York Bassmasters in Canada won the Berkley Conservation Award for the club’s multi-year restoration effort on Bogart Creek. New York’s Salt City club won the Berkley Recruitment/Retention Award for restructuring its club and tournament format in an effort to recruit new anglers and to challenge current members.
To be eligible, your club must be a B.A.S.S. affiliate. E-mail your project submission to Noreen Clough at firstname.lastname@example.org by Jan. 15, 2013. Representatives from Berkley and B.A.S.S. will judge the submissions and determine winners by Feb. 1, 2013, and Jim Martin, conservation director for the Berkley Conservation Institute, will present awards for the 2012 winners at the 2013 Bassmaster Classic in Tulsa, OK.
Judging criteria for both categories (conservation and recruitment/retention) are the same as that used over the last several years. Submissions must address the following criteria:
Scope of project: How significant is this project? Will it affect many people and/or communities? Will it have long or short-term benefits? Will it set an example that will be picked up by others? Projects with the most reach and longevity will be judged more significant.
Partners: Was this project a partnership with other key organizations or was it done by a few B.A.S.S. club members? Winners involve local communities and businesses, state natural resource agencies, local schools/universities, other fishing clubs and conservation organizations such as the Friends of Reservoirs and National Reservoir Fish Habitat Partnership. More partners allow projects to have more significance than those that are done in the short term with just a few people.
Creativity: Is this a new concept? Even boat ramp and streamside cleanups can be creative. Creativity gets extra credit for setting examples that can be picked up by others, particularly when publicized in B.AS.S. Times and Bassmaster.com. An entry should inspire others to pick up more challenging and creative projects of more significance.
Timing: The project will be judged based on what was done in 2012. However, some projects are multi-year projects and have significance beyond a single year. Therefore, if you submitted a project for 2011 and it has continuing merit and benefit, or significant differences/additions, please do re-submit for 2012. Projects that demonstrate ongoing benefits rank higher than short-term, one-time efforts.
Please direct questions to Clough at email@example.com.