BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — A pioneer of professional fishing, current champion angler, industry leader and two longtime outdoors writers have been selected as the eighth class to be inducted into the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame.
John Powell of Alabama, Irwin Jacobs of Minnesota, Tim Tucker of Florida, Woo Daves of Virginia and Steve Price of Texas were selected by Hall of Fame members earlier this summer from a list of nominees. Powell and Tucker will be inducted posthumously.
"We are thrilled to honor such a diverse class and highlight the outstanding accomplishments of these men," said Sammy Lee, president of the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame. "This group has established themselves over the years on the water with rods and lures, with key decisions in the board room and to readers on the pages of magazines, newspapers and the Internet to help make our sport what it is today."
Nominations for induction are accepted and added to the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame master list, and then considered by the membership. Inductees must receive enough votes to be among the top five and ratified by the Board of Directors. Additional nominees above the top five vote recipients also may be considered by the board for inclusion or special honor.
The Class of 2009 will be inducted during ceremonies Thursday evening, February 19, at the Bassmaster Classic in Shreveport, La. They will join 35 other men and women honored for their contributions to the sport.
"Numerous people have made an impact over the years to help improve and grow the sport of bass fishing we love so dearly," Lee said. "We applaud these men and women in the Class of 2009 and our previous honorees for their great innovations, strong dedication and intense passion."
The Bass Fishing Hall of Fame is a non-profit organization dedicated to all anglers, manufacturers and members of the media who further the sport of bass fishing.
Tickets for the 2009 Hall of Fame induction banquet are $75 per person and $1,000 for a corporate table. They may be purchased through www.bassfishinghof.com or by calling 1-888-690-2277.
The Class of 2009:
Powell grew up on a "rawhide" farm in Elmore County, Ala., northeast of Montgomery. He fished commercially until joining the Army Air Corps in 1947. After a 22-year service in the Air Force, Powell continued his love of fishing to a new tournament circuit organization established in his hometown, the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society.
He was a longtime friend of B.A.S.S. founder Ray Scott and borrowed a V-hull plywood boat to fish the second Bassmaster tournament on Smith Lake in Alabama in 1967. Scott loaned him a canoe-like Chrysler boat to fish additional events, which he used to win the first tournament on Lake Eufaula with a stunning catch of 132 pounds. After a tour in Vietnam, he retired from service and began fishing professionally, becoming the first to win consecutive tournaments, in 1971 on Sam Rayburn and Table Rock lakes. Powell qualified for six Bassmaster Classic championships.
He was an early innovator of shallow-water fishing with plastic worms, which were gaining popularity in the 1970s after Mann's Bait Company hit the market with the Jelly Worm. Powell regularly told anglers in the boat with him to set the hook quickly when they felt a bite instead of waiting. But he was known for his patience and adept casting skills. Powell died in 2007.
A Minneapolis-based entrepreneur, Irwin L. Jacobs owns and operates more than half a dozen businesses, including Genmar Industries, the world's largest privately-held recreational boat builder with annual sales exceeding $1 billion, and FLW Outdoors, the world's largest fishing tournament organization with annual awards of $43 million for anglers in 12 tournament circuits targeting bass, walleye, redfish, kingfish and striped bass.
Jacobs set out to fully tap into the buying power of the nation's 50 million fishing enthusiasts with the 1996 acquisition of a small fishing-tournament company he later renamed FLW Outdoors after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood.
Jacobs saw FLW Outdoors tournaments as a unique and powerful opportunity to communicate with a huge consumer group that had never been pursued. In 1997, Jacobs hooked the giant retailer, Wal-Mart, as a title sponsor, which eventually allowed Jacobs to court the world's leading consumer products companies. As a result of Jacobs' efforts, more than 50 leading consumer brands, including brands owned by global powerhouses BP, General Motors, Kellogg's, and Procter & Gamble, now sponsor FLW Outdoors tournaments.
In 2007, FLW Outdoors made history by awarding the sport's first $1 million check to Arkansas angler Scott Suggs when he won the Forrest Wood Cup championship.
Among his personal accomplishments, Jacobs underwrote and served as chairman of the 1991 International Summer Special Olympics Games, which were held in Minneapolis/St. Paul. Jacobs has personally funded the building, furnishing and overall operations of Dells Place, a group home for developmentally challenged individuals; Functional Industries, an occupational workshop for physically and mentally disabled individuals; and The Art Center of Minnesota. Additionally, Jacobs supports several other local and nonprofit organizations benefiting the arts, disabled, developmentally challenged and homeless.
Cross Creek, Fla.
One of the country's most influential and widely published outdoor writers, Tim Tucker was a longtime senior writer for Bassmaster and B.A.S.S. Times magazines, and his work also appeared in Field & Stream, Outdoor Life, In-Fisherman and a host of other publications.
In addition to his syndicated columns in 33 newspapers, Tucker authored eight books and co-hosted radio programs over the years. He won more than 100 awards for his writing and photography during his 25-year career as an outdoor journalist. His articles and photographs helped launch the careers several of today's most successful professional anglers.
Tucker died in an automobile accident in Gainesville, Fla., in July 2007. He was a member and past president of the Southeastern Outdoor Writers Association, remaining active in the organization as a board member and advisor. The father of twins, Rachel and Kyle, he was a popular Little League baseball coach at the time of his death.
Tucker was posthumously awarded the BASS Outstanding Achievement Award at the 2008 Bassmaster Classic in Greenville, S.C., which was accepted by his wife, Darlene, and their children.
Spring Grove, Va.
Near the end of his long career in professional fishing, Woo Daves won the 2000 Bassmaster Classic in Chicago. In all, he has competed in 17 Classics, finishing among the Top 5 in six of those events. He has won four Bassmaster tournaments, including the 2002 New York Open.
Daves is known as a relentless promoter of bass fishing, spending the entire year after his Classic win presenting seminars and making appearances to represent his sponsors and the sport.
One of the first to establish a close connection between NASCAR and bass fishing, Daves established an annual charity tournament involving NASCAR legends and bass anglers in 1991. The tournaments generate funds for Super Kids, a Virginia-based organization benefiting the mentally challenged.
Price has been a full-time writer and photojournalist since 1973 and a writer/photographer for Bassmaster since 1974, selling more than 3,000 magazine articles, primarily about bass fishing, to such publications as Field & Stream, Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, National Geographic, Rand McNally, Southern Living and many more.
Price served as Outdoor Editor for Southern Living magazine, which had a circulation of 3 million, from 1975-78. He was a syndicated newspaper columnist for 10 years (1986-96), a radio program producer/host (1990-1994) and is the author of five books about bass fishing.
His photography has been recognized both nationally and internationally, and Price has been a semi-finalist and finalist in the worldwide "Wildlife Photographer of the Year" competition sponsored by British Petroleum (nearly 20,000 entries annually). His photography has been used in books and promotions worldwide and by organizations such as the National Geographic Society, Reader's Digest, Associated Press, Game Conservation International, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, General Motors, Toyota, and the Brunswick Corp., among others.
Price has attended every Bassmaster Classic since 1976 as a press writer/photographer. He has appeared on numerous television bass fishing programs as a spokesman for the sport.