In what capacity are you currently engaged in the sport of fly fishing?
I’m the Editor-in-Chief of Dun Magazine and the Executive Editor of a Tight Loop Magazine (DunMagazine.com – aTightLoop.com)
How were you introduced to the sport?
I was introduced to the sport through a small fly shop in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I took a fly tying class there one winter when it was really cold and there was nothing else to do, and I fell in love with all things fly. That next spring I started fishing the Huron River which ran right by the University of Michigan where I was working at the time. I spent every available minute in that river fishing.
What is it about fly fishing that “keeps you coming back”?
There are so many things. I would have to say it’s the ability to be involved in a sport that is ever changing, ever growing, and always has something new to offer.
Who were your biggest influences or mentors, male or female?
Wow, that’s a hard one. I did all of my formative fishing on my own and learned by trial and error … I would have to say Kurt Kopala from a Tight Loop Magazine has been inspirational in my role as Editor and taking my fishing to the next level. He’s a behind the scenes kind of guy, but an excellent angler and is super smart. I like to learn from people who just love to teach.
What would you consider your home fishery and what do you find so alluring and special about it?
I would consider my home fishery the Huron River in Ann Arbor, MI. That’s where I learned to fly fish, so it will always hold a special place for me; kind of like going to your childhood home even after it’s no longer in your family. I would consider my home water the Milwaukee River and Lake Michigan, since these are the waters I fish on a weekly basis currently.
What environmental challenges are faced by your fishery?
Currently in the Midwest, Lake Michigan and the rivers in the area are being plagued with invasive species. I’m a diver and while the zebra mussels have been great for visibility in Lake Michigan, they are causing havoc in fish numbers and habitat. I think that’s the one that hits home the biggest for me.
When you are not fishing,what are you doing?
When I’m not fishing, I’m thinking about fishing and traveling to speak and see my kids, who are all grown or away at school.
You have the day off. What are you fishing for and where?
That depends on the time of year, but in the fall I’m headed to the Milwaukee to fish for steelhead and browns.
What charitable organizations or causes do you support? Why is this important to you?
As a magazine, the staff and I commit to volunteering over 100 hours a year to charitable causes. Most of these are conservation minded projects or projects such as Casting for Recovery and Project Healing Waters. I was brought up in a very philanthropic and others-minded household, so giving back has always been a part of my life. These two organizations combine my love of fly fishing with just really great opportunities to do something real and make an impact. Watching the weight of the world lift off of someone’s shoulders when they enter the water for the first time —and being a part of that — that’s just good karma.
Where would you go to fish if there were zero restrictions on expense, travel, etc…? Why?
Anywhere there is salt. I’ve become addicted to fishing salt recently and I would be on my way to the Seychelles. Beautiful water, Giant Trevallys, Triggers and Bones – and all the others in between. Need I say more?