Each year one angler that exemplifies the ideals of sportsmanship and community service is selected from each Major League Fishing circuit. In the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit presented by Bad Boy Mowers, the award recognizes a TITLE qualifier, nominated by his peers, who displays an overall commitment to sportsmanship and community leadership, on and off the water, through ethical behavior, integrity, class, selflessness, conservation, volunteerism and kindness to others.

In short, the Forrest L Wood Sportsmanship and Community Leadership award winner is an example for us all, just like the late Forrest L Wood for whom the award is named. By honoring these qualities in others, we honor Forrest Wood’s legacy.

It is my honor to present the 2021 Forrest L Wood Sportsmanship and Community Leadership award in the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit to Evan Barnes from Hot Springs, Arkansas.   

Evan’s nomination cited his profound respect for the sport and its ability to connect people from all walks of life. As the nominator wrote, “Evan is always an image of sportsmanship and integrity. He takes every opportunity to help the community and to share the passion of his faith. He always reflects the image of a true sportsman who will go above and beyond for anyone.”

In closing, I’d like to borrow a few words that Evan posted to Facebook back in May that I think speak volumes about his outlook on life. He wrote: “Adversity is going to come… Like it or not… It’s our determination to press on and dig deep that makes a difference in the outcome of life!” That’s great advice for us all.

Evan, congratulations on winning the 2021 Forrest L Wood Sportsmanship and Community Leadership award.