History of The International Game Fish Association

Established 1939

 

IGFA History Timeline

The International Game Fish Association formally launched

June 7, 1939

The International Game Fish Association formally launched

From the IGFA’s founding in 1939 to his resignation as President in 1961, Michael Lerner…

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Official IGFA yearbook and linen line recognized

January 1, 1943

Official IGFA yearbook and linen line recognized

Despite a serious war-related paper shortage and the required vetting by the wartime Office of…

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IGFA contributes to war effort

February 2, 1943

IGFA contributes to war effort

  Michael Lerner assisted in the design of a new survival kit for servicemen adrift…

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Michael Lerner becomes IGFA President

January 1, 1944

Michael Lerner becomes IGFA President

In 1944, Dr. William K. Gregory retired from the American Museum of Natural History and…

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IGFA publishes organization and rules

January 1, 1945

IGFA publishes organization and rules

Only a few months after that first meeting there were two associated scientific institutions, 10…

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IGFA recognizes nylon lines, changes record categories from thread-count to breaking strength

January 1, 1949

IGFA recognizes nylon lines, changes record categories from thread-count to breaking strength

In 1949, for the first time, the IGFA began to recognize nylon and synthetic fishing…

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IGFA relocates to Florida, William K. DuPont Carpenter becomes President

January 1, 1958

IGFA relocates to Florida, William K. DuPont Carpenter becomes President

By 1958, the organization had outgrown its American Museum of Natural History offices and relocated…

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IGFA releases first edition of World Record Marine Fishes

January 2, 1971

IGFA releases first edition of World Record Marine Fishes

One of IGFA’s President Bill Carpenter’s most significant contributions was his revamping of the IGFA’s…

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Marine Angler newsletter

January 1, 1973

Marine Angler newsletter

A bimonthly newsletter entitled International Marine Angler was begun in 1973, a publication introduced as a way of…

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Library of Fishes takes shape

February 1, 1973

Library of Fishes takes shape

Surely one of IGFA President E.K. Harry’s most personally satisfying accomplishments during his tenure was…

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IGFA becomes a nonprofit

March 3, 1973

IGFA becomes a nonprofit

Elwood K. Harry joined the IGFA in 1962 as vice President and is widely credited…

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Elwood K. Harry becomes IGFA President

January 30, 1975

Elwood K. Harry becomes IGFA President

Elwood Harry was appointed IGFA President in 1975. From the beginning, Elwood K. Harry lived…

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IGFA adopts the metric system

January 1, 1977

IGFA adopts the metric system

On January 1, 1977, IGFA established a metric line-class system in order to align with…

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World Record Marine Fishes redesign

April 2, 1978

World Record Marine Fishes redesign

In May 1978, IGFA members were stunned when they pulled their annual World Record Marine…

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IGFA becomes the keeper of freshwater and saltwater fly records

June 1, 1978

IGFA becomes the keeper of freshwater and saltwater fly records

One of E.K. Harry’s most ambitious goals was realized in 1978 when the IGFA absorbed…

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IGFA starts freshwater line-class and tippet-class records

January 1, 1980

IGFA starts freshwater line-class and tippet-class records

In absorbing freshwater and fly fishing responsibilities E.K. Harry noticed the fact that existing records for…

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The IGFA holds the World Angling Conference

January 1, 1984

The IGFA holds the World Angling Conference

One of the primary means of connecting scientists and anglers is through symposia that are…

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First IGFA International Auction & Banquet

January 26, 1984

First IGFA International Auction & Banquet

The IGFA’s first big fundraiser was held in 1984  in Palm Beach, Florida, and proved…

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All-Tackle records program expanded

October 3, 1984

All-Tackle records program expanded

In 1984, E.K Harry and the IGFA Board of Trustees expanded the All-Tackle program to…

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No Billfish on the Menu campaign

July 4, 1990

No Billfish on the Menu campaign

In an effort to inform the public about the dwindling number of billfish and the…

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IGFA relocates and Mike Leech becomes IGFA President

January 1, 1992

IGFA relocates and Mike Leech becomes IGFA President

By early 1992, IGFA moved from Ft. Lauderdale to Pompano Beach and E. K. Harry’s…

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Line testing, scale certification and IGFA Slams and Trophy Fish Clubs added

January 1, 1993

Line testing, scale certification and IGFA Slams and Trophy Fish Clubs added

In his first Presidential letter to members in the 1993 World Record Game Fishes, Mike Leech…

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IGFA Trustees approve new logo created by Dr. Guy Harvey

January 26, 1996

IGFA Trustees approve new logo created by Dr. Guy Harvey

By the early 1990s, the IGFA’s original logo had been diluted by various modifications over…

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Expansion of IGFA World Records, new categories for female anglers

January 1, 1998

Expansion of IGFA World Records, new categories for female anglers

In the beginning of 1998 word record categories grew once again, this time with the…

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First Annual IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame Induction

January 18, 1999

First Annual IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame Induction

The Inaugral IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame recognized extraordinary achievements in recreational fishing around the…

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Rob Kramer becomes President of the IGFA

March 21, 2003

Rob Kramer becomes President of the IGFA

The IGFA Board of Trustees elected Rob Kramer as IGFA President in March, 2003. Kramer…

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IGFA hosts World Recreational Fishing Conference

November 10, 2008

IGFA hosts World Recreational Fishing Conference

The IGFA hosted the 5th World Recreational Fishing Conference (WRFC) at its headquarters November 10-12,…

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Take Marlin off the Menu

August 9, 2010

Take Marlin off the Menu

Concerned about the health of billfish fisheries, the IGFA and the National Coalition for Marine…

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IGFA and Stanford University partner to form the IGFA Great Marlin Race

January 11, 2011

IGFA and Stanford University partner to form the IGFA Great Marlin Race

Under the leadership of IGFA Chairman at the time Packy Offield and IGFA President Rob…

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IGFA launches All-Tackle Length Record release category

February 9, 2011

IGFA launches All-Tackle Length Record release category

After several years in the making, the IGFA was pleased to announce the All-Tackle Length…

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IGFA participates in the first IUCN global assessment of tuna and billfish species

February 15, 2011

IGFA participates in the first IUCN global assessment of tuna and billfish species

From Feb. 15-18, 2011, marine fishery biologists from four countries (U.S., Japan, Spain, and Brazil),…

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Billfish Conservation Act signed into law

October 5, 2011

Billfish Conservation Act signed into law

Signed into law by President Obama on October 5th, 2012, the Billfish Conservation Act (BCA)…

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IGFA Great Marlin Race sets records

February 9, 2012

IGFA Great Marlin Race sets records

The longest distance ever tracked by a satellite tag on a marlin was recorded for…

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Female freshwater world record categories added

April 1, 2014

Female freshwater world record categories added

At the January 2014 IGFA annual meeting, a decision was made to separate the freshwater…

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IGFA partners in the FAO Caribbean Billfish Project

January 1, 2015

IGFA partners in the FAO Caribbean Billfish Project

From 2015-2018, the IGFA participated in the Caribbean Billfish Project (CBP). The goal of the…

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First publication from the IGFA Great Marlin Race

January 11, 2016

First publication from the IGFA Great Marlin Race

The first scientific publication from the IGMR, titled “Influence of temperature and oxygen on the distribution…

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IGFA hosts the 6th International Billfish Symposium

September 14, 2016

IGFA hosts the 6th International Billfish Symposium

The 6th International Billfish Symposium (IBS) was held in September 2016 at  IGFA Headquarters and…

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Nehl Horton becomes President of the IGFA

September 1, 2017

Nehl Horton becomes President of the IGFA

Nehl Horton, IGFA’s seventh president, is a veteran business leader, communicator and public policy advocate…

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Victory for Billfish Conservation

August 6, 2018

Victory for Billfish Conservation

 The International Game Fish Association (IGFA) celebrated the signing of House Bill 4528 into law  on…

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