This year, FR&R honors one of its own, Conservation editor Ted Williams, as the 2004 Angler of the Year. We can think of no one more deserving of the AOY
This year, FR&R honors one of its own, Conservation editor Ted Williams, as the 2004 Angler of the Year. We can think of no one more deserving of the AOY Award; quite simply, we believe Ted to be America's finest and most courageous conservation writer, and we feel extremely lucky to have him on our masthead. Nor is FR&R the only organization that prizes Mr. Williams so highly. In just the last 18 months, Ted has received major conservation awards from the Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF), and the New York Chapter of the Coastal Conservation Association.Ted's award marks the third time since 1985, when we first began the program, that we have given the honor to a contributing editor or editor-at-large of our own magazine. Fly-Casting editor Joan Wulff was our AOY in 1994, and John Gierach received the honor in 2000. Although the late, deeply missed Gary LaFontaine was our 1996 Angler of the Year, he did not become a contributing editor until several months after receiving the award. Congratulations, Ted. And Thank you. Of course, we are also honoring a number of items of fly tackle with our 2004 FR&R Tackle Awards. These awards, for particularly fine pieces of angling gear, once again include a Reader's Choice Award whose recipient was chosen by FR&R readers and visitors to our Web site, www.flyrodreel.com. The regular Tackle Awards were selected by a panel of angling experts from around the country, some of whom are FR&R contributors, and some of whom are not. This year's panel included FR&R contributing editors Buzz Bryson, Darrel Martin and Ted Leeson, as well as Brad Jackson, Steve Kantner, Rick Kustich. Rick Ruoff and Jack Sayers, Our thanks to all of them.