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Fishing and boating industry stakeholders advocate on Capitol Hill during ‘Center Focus on Washington’

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The Center for Sportfishing Policy hosted its annual “Center Focus on Washington” May 14-15, giving boating, fishing and industry advocates and stakeholders an opportunity to have discussions with policymakers.

“Center Focus on Washington” ran concurrently with the American Boating Congress, the marine industry’s premier political and legislative event, hosted by the National Marine Manufacturers Association.

Key issues for ABC and Center Focus participants included enforcement of the Modern Fish Act; ensuring robust public access to federally managed waters and improving recreation infrastructure; conserving marine resources; protecting unmanaged forage fish; among other topics.

“Fifteen years ago, we were fighting for a seat at the table; today, we are achieving major victories, such as the passage of the Modern Fish Act and state management of Gulf red snapper,” said Jeff Angers, president of the Center for Sportfishing Policy, in a statement. “Recreational anglers and boaters are finally seeing positive results from years of advocating with one loud voice.”

At its annual board meeting on May 15, CSP elected members to its board of directors. “These are exciting times for recreational anglers and boaters, and we are fortunate at CSP to have passionate volunteer leaders working to ensure a bright future for America’s 11 million saltwater anglers,” Angers said.

“We pay our respects to our dear friend Curtis Bostick, former CSP treasurer, who passed away in February,” Angers said. “As a founder of Coastal Conservation Association Florida, Curtis devoted his time, talent and treasure to marine conservation and recreational fishing. He is missed by our community.”

Elected to serve three-year terms: Dave Bulthuis, vice president of government affairs and industry relations, Costa Del Mar; Tim Choate; Thom Dammrich, president, NMMA; chairman Bob Hayes; John Paul Morris, general manager for online, Bass Pro Shops; and treasurer Mike Nussman.

Elected to one-year terms: annual member director Chris Butler, president, Butler Marine; corporate member director Tommy Hancock, president, Sportsman Boats; corporate member director Joe Neber, president, Contender Boats; and life member director Mitch Brownlee, chairman, Coastal Conservation Association National.

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