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New Hall of Fame Inductees

The greatest accomplishments of sport fishing are far more extraordinary than a great catch alone. Although skill is certainly the core of the sport, the most outstanding individuals in recreational angling have also been captains, scientists, conservationists, writers, and fishing industry leaders. This year, the IGFA will induct five individuals and families into its Fishing Hall of Fame on October 28, 2014 at the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum in Dania Beach, Florida, USA.
The first class, honoring 29 of sport fishing’s luminaries, was inducted in 1998. With the induction this year of Eugenie and  Lou Marron; Jerry McKinnis; Hank Parker; Al Pflueger Jr.; and Louis Sr. “Pop,” John, Louis Jr. and Theodore Schmidt,  the total number of IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame members will grow to 105.
To learn more about the 100 current members of the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame, please visit http://www.igfa.org/Museum/HALL-OF-FAME.aspx for photos, videos, and biographies. Tickets to the 16th Annual IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony are $225 and table sponsorships are available.
To reserve your seat today, please contact Marissa Mackel at mmackel@igfa.org or 954-924-4236.
 

On October 28, 2014, these accomplished anglers will join the Hall and be honored alongside more than 100 current members.  This year’s honorees are:

Eugenie and  Lou Marron

The Marrons were members of the Brielle Marlin and Tuna Club and the Miami Beach Rod and Reel Club.  They traveled the world in search of new locations and big fish and set many world records, including two long-standing ones:  Lou’s 1,182 lb all-tackle swordfish caught in 1953 and Eugenie’s 772 lb swordfish, an 80 lb record since 1954 and the heaviest swordfish ever caught by a woman.  Generous contributors to scientific research, they funded billfish and Humboldt Current studies through the University of Miami, and collected giant squid for an MIT study of their central nervous systems. Eugenie’s book about their fishing experiences, Albacora: The Search for the Giant Broadbill, appeared in 1952.
 


Jerry McKinnis

 Jerry McKinnis, the outdoor sports pioneer for ESPN, is recognized as one of the most influential figures in the industry.   As a young man with a fishing guide service in Arkansas, he began doing a local TV show called The Fishin’ Hole to give his business a boost.  The show went regional, then national, becoming the longest-running fishing show in TV history.  He brought the show to cable TV when ESPN launched in 1979, and JM Associates went on to develop the popular “ESPN Outdoors” block of programming on Saturday mornings.  In 2011 he teamed up with two others to purchase B.A.S.S. from ESPN, putting his touch on everything from the Elite Series to the Federation Nation.


Hank Parker

Hank Parker was the first angler to achieve bass fishing’s “Grand Slam” after he won the 1985 Super B.A.S.S. Tournament, the 1983 Angler-of-the-Year title and the 1979 Bassmaster Classic.  In 1978, at the age of 27, Parker joined the B.A.S.S. tour, and that first year he fished a total of 27 national tournaments and banked $60,000 in prize money.  For the next 13 years, Parker collected winnings in 76% of the 120 events he fished, and during his 14 years as a pro he qualified for 14 Bassmaster Classics and won two of them.  In 1985 he launched a TV series, Hank Parker’s Outdoor Magazine, which became an instant success.
 


Al Pflueger Jr.

Al Pflueger is considered by many to be one of the greatest anglers in history, and the man to beat in any tournament.  Al set endless records, appeared on several of Curt Gowdy’s American Sportsman TV shows, and started an artificial reef program with the city of Miami.  The family’s business, Pflueger Taxidermy, which was founded in 1925, was responsible for mounting more than one million fish and was known worldwide.  Al took over the company from his father in 1962, grew it to more than 200 employees, and played an influential role in the release-mount trend that began in the 1970s - in part due to Pflueger Taxidermy’s advances in fiberglass technology.
 


The Schmidt Family

The Schmidts were big-game fishing pioneers.  Beginning in 1924, “Pop,” fished Panama and the Canal Zone.  Sons John, Louis Jr., and Theodore were equally skilled and passionate about the sport and became top guides, and the family worked as a team on Caiman II.  All were founding members of the Pacific Sailfish Club and Panama Marlin Club.  Louis Jr. caught the second marlin in Panama waters and the very first black marlin grander. The family’s additional contributions include:  developing the bridled baiting of live tuna for marlin with Webster Robinson, credited with developing the first recreational downrigger in the 1950s, and discovering the “Piñas Reef” area in Piñas Bay, Panama.


Please visit our IGFA Hall of Fame page for biographies of previous IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame honorees. To reserve your seats for the 2014 IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame induction ceremony, please contact Marissa Mackel via 954-924-4236 or mmackel@igfa.org.