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           The annual 2019 IHEA-USA Business Conference was held in Orange Beach, Alabama. IHEA-USA praised the Department of Natural Resources of Alabama and their volunteers for being great hosts.  There were over 150 registered attendees who traveled from all over the US, Canada, Mexico and Guam to be at the conference.

           The conference consisted of engaging speakers, educational workshops, incredible local food all within the setting of Alabama’s spectacular Gulf Coast area. Attendees helped raise funds for IHEA-USA, exchanged new and developing techniques for delivering HunterEd and renewed stage agency relationships.

           HunterEd Administrators and volunteers toured the new Foley Community Archery Park and took part in an assortment of interactive activities including a park tour, pellet rifle range shoots, 3D archery, a tree stand safety course and a hunting incident investigation demo.

           The final evening featured IHEA-USA’s annual awards and closing ceremony including both silent and live auctions and an awards banquet. Following are the award recipients: 


Executive Director's Award - Awarded by Executive Director

            Presented to Paulette Lubke for outstanding assistance to the Executive Director of the IHEA-USA


Dr. Edward Kozicky Award - Awarded by President

            Presented to Mark Reiter for outstanding assistance to the President of the IHEA-USA


Host State Award - Alabama

            Presented to Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Hunter Education Program Staff for outstanding service to the IHEA-USA


IHEA-USA Service Award - Outgoing Board of Directors

            Presented to Mark Reiter for outstanding service as AFWA Representative of the IHEA-USA from 2016-2019


IHEA-USA Service Award - Outgoing Board of Directors

            Presented to Melissa Neely For outstanding service as President, Vice President, Secretary and Regional Representative of the IHEA-USA from 2012-2019


Gladney Davidson Award

            Presented to Lee Brown for highest of service to IHEA-USA


Professional of the Year

            Presented to Roy Griffith for longtime excellence & service to the IHEA-USA


Industry Partner Award

            Presented to Summit Treestands Seat of the Pants Harness for longtime excellence & service to the IHEA-USA


NGO/Agency Partner Award

            Presented to National Wild Turkey Federation for longtime excellence & service to the IHEA-USA


Special Recognition - Alabama NWTF

Presented by:  IHEA-USA & Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division

For longtime excellence and service to the Alabama Wildlife & Freshwater Fisheries Division and IHEA-USA.


Hunter Education Administrator of the Year - Melissa Neely (New York)

Presented by Mission Sponsor - Kalkomey

For performing above and beyond the "call of duty" in promoting hunter education, shooting sports and R3 efforts. 



            IHEA-USA thanks all who support HunterEd throughout each year, especially the nearly 55,000 volunteer instructors and over 650,000 HunterEd students in the US. Next year’s annual Business Conference will be hosted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission in Jupiter, Florida, May 19-21, 2020.