Omar Bo Gade
Danish born, but raised in Italy, Omar is an eclectic flyfishing industry insider. For the last 15 years, he has combined his studies and professional background as a visual communication freelancer, with his passion for fishing and travel. He collaborated with tackle manufacturers, shops, and several insiders of the sport fishing industry, and over the years, he has visited many distant flyfishing destinations. Omar has written numerous articles for European fishing publications and books, and in 2013, he founded the Denmark Fishing and Outdoor Lodge in Fyn, Denmark. As a flyfishing guide, he has become an avid ambassador for sea-run brown trout. Besides being engaged every year for some months at the lodge, Omar also spearheads several other fishing tourism projects.
Adham E. Lebshetain
Captain Lebshetain was born in Alexandria, Egypt, in 1960. Following his graduation, he began a career that would take him sailing around the world and visiting over 50 different marine ports. Through his travels, he became increasingly conscious of the importance of marine life preservation and conservation. Today, Captain Lebshetain is retired, which allows him to dedicate much of his time to the promotion of sport fishing and educating future generations on the importance of conservation. As an active member of Alexandria's Fishing Club and Yacht Club, he was elected as a member of the board of the Egyptian Fishing Federation under the presidency of IGFA Trustee Mohamed Kaddah.
Khaled El Bahtimy
Born in Alexandria, Egypt, Khaled has always been captivated by the sport of fishing and has participated in numerous angling events at an early age through his membership in both The Alexandria Yacht Club and The Alexandria Fishing Club. Today, he works closely with the Egyptian Angling Federation as a sponsor of the 7th Mediterranean Sea Fishing Competition, which will include a Junior Category with the goal of attracting and educating a new generation of anglers. As an IGFA Representative, Khaled's goals are to further angler education efforts in the region to help create conservation-minded, ethical anglers that will help ensure a future for the sport in years to come.
Ahmed Mitkees started fishing with his father on the Nile River when he was only four years old. Since then, he has grown to have a successful fishing career, ranking as one of Egypt's top anglers and representing the country in various international angling events. His passion for angling led him to establish Red Sea Anglers, a sportfishing charter and tackle company that was one of the first fishing operations to practice catch and release practices in the region. Through Red Sea Anglers, Ahmed has helped organize more than 30 tournaments in the past ten years in collaboration with the Egyptian Angling Federation. In addition, he organized the first international popping, jigging, and trolling tournament in Egypt in 2022. Ahmed looks forward to expanding the sport through additional international angling competitions in the region.
Omar Khalifa is an IGFA World Record Holder and fishing enthusiast who has competed on a local and international tournaments for several years. Growing up, Omar used to fish the Nile and occasionally the Mediterranean but his love for the sport blossomed when he moved to El Gouna. There he began to learn from the best fishermen around and took his hobby to a new level. Omar has now competed in several national competitions and represented Egypt in two Big Game World Championships (France 2018 & South Africa 2019). As an IGFA Representative, Omar's goal is to help promote the sport through theoretical and practical courses.
Mohamed S. El-SehrawyGieza, Egypt
Mohamed El-Sehrawy began fishing in Egypt's Suez Gulf when he was five years old. He progressed to a small boat and soon began fishing offshore of Port Said. In 1969, he joined the biggest fishing club in Egypt at the time, The Egyptian Shooting & Fishing Club, where he served as a board member. He joined the IGFA in 1978 and founded the Egyptian Angling Federation in 1983 to better promote IGFA principles of ethical angling. He continues to promote fishing in his country, working with local governments and agencies to educate anglers about sustainable fishing.
Karim Sherif was first introduced to the sport by his father when he was only 4 years old. His passion for the sport grew with the years and today he is recognized as one of the top anglers in Egypt having won several fishing national titles and competitions. In 2010, Karim founded 'Bluefin- Sport Fishing', one of the first Fishing Clubs in the region to join as an IGFA Fellow Club. He has organized several fishing trips and camps for adults and youth alike to help promote sportfishing in the country. In 2019, Karim founded 'Bluefin: Fishing Academy', the first IGFA Strategic Partner in Education in the middle- east. Karim continues to work with the IGFA in the promotion of the sport and ethical angling practices with the aim of creating new generations of conservation-minded anglers in Egypt and beyond.
Hany Sadek is a well-known name in the sport fishing community in Egypt. He is the co-founder of Red Sea Anglers, which was one of the first companies to organize sport fishing events in Egypt. Hany's passion for fishing began at a very young age and over the years. Apart from being a successful fisherman and entrepreneur, Hany is also a marine conservation activist. He has been actively involved in various initiatives to protect marine life and promote sustainable fishing practices. Hany's reach extends beyond social media platforms and mainstream media, where he has been featured in numerous articles and interviews. Hany's dedication to marine conservation has earned him a great deal of respect and admiration from the community, which he has used to raise awareness about the need to protect the fragile marine ecosystem.
Endrik TõnsbergTallinn, Estonia
Since 2003, Endrik Tonsberg has served as the chairman of the Estonian Sport Fishing Federation-- a not-for-profit organization representing the interests of the Estonian sport fishing community in Estonia and Europe. Tonsberg is a passionate angler and committed to the promotion of ethical and conservation-oriented fishing practices.
Pekka SaloHelsinki, Finland
Journalist/photographer Pekka Salo started fishing at a young age, later traveling to top fishing spots in Europe, Asia, and North, Central and South America. Salo's work has been published in some of the world's most renowned fishing magazines. He currently writes for Metsästys ja Kalastus (Hunting and Fishing) magazine in his home country of Finland.
Philippe DolivetCommana, Brittany, France
Philippe Dolivet is the former Editor-in-Chief of Plaisirs de la Pêche-- the magazine of French fly-fishing. He has extensive fly fishing experience as a guide, journalist and photographer in more than 35 countries around the world. His understanding of European fly-fishing is tremendous, encompassing trout, grayling, Atlantic salmon, pike, sea bass, carp, shad, and largemouth bass. A professional guide and instructor, Dolivet lives in Brittany where he promotes IGFA's mission and vision as often as possible and is a reference for anyone wanting to know more about the IGFA's fly fishing rules and world record application process.
Enrico CapozziMilan, Italy
Enrico Capozzi has been a professional angler since the mid 1970s and his travels have taken him to every continent and every ocean on the planet. Capozzi holds world records in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and has over 10,000 billfish releases. He is an active promoter of conservation and as an IGFA Representative is committed to the promotion of the sport and IGFA rules.
Luca BonfantiMilan, Italy
Luca Bonfanti has held two IGFA world records for dentex and one for dusky grouper. He was also the first to deploy a satellite tag on a Mediterranean spearfish during the IGFA Great Marlin Race. The Billfish Foundation honored him as top tag-and-release angler in 1996 and 2004 for Mediterranean spearfish. He is the president and founder of the Maguro-San Foundation-- dedicated to encouraging a passion for fishing and proper handling of fish for consumption. Bonfanti was sponsor and organizer of the 2006 IGFA European Representatives meeting in Milano.
Paolo PacchiariniMilan, Italy
Paolo Pachiarini of Milan, Italy began fishing at age six and evolved into an enthusiastic fly fisherman. The long-time IGFA member has scored several world records. Pacchiarini regularly authors articles in Italian and foreign fly-fishing magazines and has appeared on Italian fishing television shows.
Born in 1977 in Naples, Italy, Sandro Onofaro embraced a passion for fishing at a very early age. At the tender age of four, his family would take him on holiday in Greece for two months where he first fell in love with the sport of fishing and marine life. Onofaro is passionate about sport fishing in Greece and believes it is in one of the most magical fishing locations in the entire Mediterranean Sea. ? As Onofaro matured, his passion for fishing grew deeper. At 16, he was elected the technical director of Fishing Club Petrarca in Naples, Italy. This is when he started to win competitions and in 1994, he earned the trolling regional champion title of the Italian Federation. At 19, Sandro moved to Parga, Greece, where he started his first sport fishing charter boat operation and a shipyard. In 2004, Sandro returned to Italy, where he again developed a new charter operation and began to disseminate his fishing knowledge through sport fishing magazines. As things have progressed in his career, Sandro has built many partnerships in different sport fishing niches. Today, he is the producer and host of fishing TV shows, serves as a consultant for the Italian fishing industry, and is a strong communicator and educator for sport fishing and conservation.
Gianfranco SantoliniRimini, Italy
Gianfranco Santolini is the President of Big Game Italia and Treasurer of the Rimini Yacht Club, one of the first established yacht clubs in Italy. As an active champion of the marine recreational fishing community, Santolini has been in the process of developing a recreational saltwater fishing license for Italian anglers. He hopes his affiliation and work with IGFA will help achieve this goal, primarily in order to help with management of recreational fish stocks in the Adriatic and Mediterranean Seas. Santolini has been involved in many conservation efforts, including the tagging of baby sharks in the Adriatic Sea, in cooperation with N.O.A.A. Santolini is also hoping to organize an international tournament with cooperation from Slovenia, Croatia, Germany and Italy, next year in Croatian waters.
Roberto RipamontiRome, Italy
Professional airline pilot Roberto Ripamonti is a prolific angling author with 11 books, 550 videos and over 2000 articles in some of Europe's best-known fishing magazines. The IGFA Representative's goal is to promote ethical fishing practices, help support modern and sustainable recreational fishing, and continue his efforts to prevent poaching.
Giacomo FortiSan Benedetto, Italy
For nearly 20 years Giacomo Forti has promoted ethical angling practices and game fish conservation in Italy through his fishing club Cicolo Nautico Sambenedettese. Forti's introduction to the IGFA came at the Offshore World Championship in 2000. Since then, Forti has hosted several successful tournaments in Italy that have helped to raise money supporting the IGFA Great Marlin Race in the Mediterranean.
Alvis Birkovs gained enormous experience in various fisheries around the world-- earning an IGFA world record for a 1.14-kilogram (two-pound, eight-ounce) grayling (Thymallus thymallus). A former Chairman of the Board of the Latvian Anglers Association, he serves as IGFA Representative for the Republic of Latvia, where he promotes the organization's objectives, angling rules, and conservation and education programs for young anglers. He also serves on parliament and government commissions and ministry working groups.
Lifelong angler/ fly fisherman Eric Arbogast's involvement in the angling industry includes the retail, tackle manufacturing, and educational sectors-- teaching the basics of fly casting and fly fishing. His articles on product testing and other topics are published primarily in online media. His goal as a representative of the IGFA is to improve and sustain the conservation of Luxembourg watersheds by educating fellow anglers. Considering the diminutive size of his home country, his mission will transcend borders, as most local waters are not exclusive to Luxembourg.