2018 Recognitions, Moving Forward in 2019
By Bruce Ross, Executive Director
In his book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People , Stephen Covey encourages us to “first, seek to understand, and only then, seek to be understood.” One must fully understand a situation before one can effectively influence it… Good advice for a new WWA Executive Director.

As I write this, I’m enjoying my first week in the job, talking to a lot of people committed to the WWA cause: volunteers, staff, members and partners. People like:

  • Dennis Nelson, Lacrosse Chapter Chair and new Board Director, whose enthusiasm and energy could barely be contained by the phone;
  • Kelcy Boettcher, Director of Administration, whose 19 years behind-the-scenes commitment has been the “grease” to WWA’s gears;
  • Rob Keickhefer, WWA Hall of Famer and its very first member, whose early “cowboy” days helped build a remarkable 35-year WWA legacy. 

Wow! What a big responsibility I feel to live up to the expectations of these people and the others with whom I’m speaking.

In the course of my nearly three decades with the US Coast Guard, and then in the private sector and non-profits, I’ve developed a fair amount of experience in joining an organization and “seeking to understand it.” That experience tells me to talk to as many people as I can, to have them shape my view of the organization, its missions, how it functions, its good and its bad… These discussions will shape the way I’ll be working to bring greater WWA impact to its missions.

So I need your help: Tell me what you think needs attention, the path you think we should be on, and the things that, as a member or volunteer, excite you.

Here’s my number: 262-224-4949. Here’s my email: bruceross@wi.rr.com . Reach out to me and help me understand your WWA.

Next Month: “FIRST, SEEK TO UNDERSTAND….” (Part 2)  
By Bruce Urben, President
Our annual State Meeting was held last weekend at City Inn Bar and Grill in Berlin and offered us time to honor and celebrate our high performing teams in 2018! What a great fundraising year, 16 Chapter/Staff events met their established goals last year; a near record. On top of that, 13 of the 16 events met or exceeded their “super goal”! In a word, awesome!

Congratulations to those teams that performed above and beyond expectations. This is a testament to our volunteers and Chapter Committees. Thank You for your support of WWA’s mission!

Congratulation is also in order to our three new members inducted into the 3rd Annual WWA Hall of Fame on Saturday: Marty Young/Nutro, Jim Rogers and Wayne Folske. They join an elite group of Hall of Fame inductees. Check out the full article, below, for more information about this year’s inductees and visit our online Hall of Fame to learn about our other two classes to date.

Webster defines “volunteer” as a person who freely offers to take part in an enterprise or service without receiving anything in return! While volunteers are not paid, they reap the benefits of feeling a sense of accomplishment while building social networks that actually support themselves. Most of us volunteer to “make a difference”, and I can say you are making a difference for Wisconsin Waterfowl Association’s mission.

Our habitat, wildfowl and regulators are the recipients of our hard work and it continues to make a difference. Improved wetland resources, healthy, and more local, waterfowl from nesting structures and marsh cleanups, clear and relevant regulations and an informed Community. What a difference you make!

Thank you for what you do, we can’t do it without You !
Adopt A Wildlife Area: 2018 Year in Review
At the Annual Meeting in Berlin on January 26th, a presentation was given summarizing the projects our AWA teams completed in 2018. It is amazing as to the variety of tasks these teams accomplished: 

The Wausau Team over at George Mead Wildlife Area (WA) surpassed their 100 hour goal with an additional 25% completed! They tackled chain saw training, clearing projects and wood duck box maintenance with UWSP students. This was a great accomplishment for their first year!

Rome Pond WA received over 100 hours of work through a clearing project, blind removal, wood duck box maintenance, new Wood Duck boxes, nesting tubes, Invasive work, black tern nesting platforms and parking lot clean-ups. 

Lake Mills WA marked a first with a multiple-year grant to improve nesting islands. 

Paradise Valley WA saw clearing projects, wood duck box maintenance, gate painting and parking lot clean-ups.

Jackson Marsh WA had new wood duck boxes and nesting tubes added and a lake clean-up. Chain saw training is next on the list.

Big Muskego was added as a new AWA and projects are being worked through, as well as chain saw training.

Wrapping up the great successes noted above, the Mud Lake WA team in Columbia County has completed their 100 hrs early as a first year team! This amp'ed-up team added new wood duck boxes and nesting tubes, planted apple trees, posted closed area signs, went through chain saw training, completed some clearing work, and most recently helped clear snow at the adjacent public shooting range!

A big thanks goes out to all involved in AWA work for the WWA ! 2019 will be an exciting year and is already starting strong!
Peter Ziegler
Project Program Update
By Peter Ziegler, Project Director
Quick update from the field: We plan to begin a project in the southeast corner of Waushara County within the next week or so. The site was prepped by being plowed off of snow to allow the cold air we all enjoyed to penetrate to provide a solid frost base to work on. Yes, that cold air was really good for WWA being able to get projects done as we get back to normal. If anyone is interested let me know and we can schedule a view of the site during construction.

On Saturday, January 26, 2019 at our State Meeting, WWA inducted three new members into our Hall of Fame. Please join us in welcoming Marty Young/Nutro, Jim Rogers and Wayne Folske.
Marty Young/Nutro (center) accepts his Hall of Fame induction alongside HOF committee members Loren Voss (L) and Rob Monette (R)
Jim Rogers (center) accepts his Hall of Fame induction alongside Loren Voss (L) and Rob Monette (R)
Wayne Folske (center) accepts his Hall of Fame induction alongside Loren Voss (L) and Rob Monette (R)
Diane Urben Named WWA's 2018 Volunteer of the Year
Diane Urben was recognized as the 2018 Volunteer of the Year at WWA's State Meeting held January 26th. Diane has been a familiar face at WWA events for more than a decade as a steady and reliable volunteer, primarily - but not exclusively - for the Green Bay chapter. For about a decade, she’s managed registration for the largest attendance fundraising banquet in the state, as well as their sporting clays shoot.

And over the past two years, Diane doubled down on her efforts, taking the place of key staff at a number of additional events, including golf outings, decoy contests, and additional shooting events. She handled not only the thankless task of registration, but also the treasurer's function.  Diane’s talents were always plied with a smile, delivered superb results, and were offered without expectation of personal reward.

Diane’s responsibilities required significant advance preparation, meticulous attention to detail, and high energy; but they also demonstrate the epitome of volunteerism so frequently on display in WWA: One need not have extraordinary skills, nor be in extraordinary circumstances, to have an extraordinary impact on our organization. Congratulations Diane!
Grand Prize: Can Am HD 8XT Camo UTV with a Karavan Trailer!

Get your tickets securely online now!
Tom's Event Corner
By Tom Seibert, Regional Director
Thanks to everyone that attended our 2019 Annual State Meeting last weekend. Many of you came to honor our Hall of Fame inductees and others to honor the award winning Chapters and volunteers for their efforts in 2018. They certainly deserved your applause. I want to thank all of you who stayed and attended our first banquet of this year, the Fox River Chapter’s event. You saw many fantastic prizes and some new items.  Thanks to the Fox River committee for hosting the State Meeting and putting on a thrilling event. Thanks for your contributions to advancing the mission of WWA with your fundraising. Read on...
Have an idea you want the wardens to answer in the new year? Let us know!
Hunt Wild Wisconsin May Be the App For You
By WDNR Conservation Warden Michael Katzenberg

When it comes to hunting apps, I think I have tried nearly each one that hit the market. I tried the new Hunt Wild Wisconsin app, and found through experience the app changed the way I plan, scout, learn and hunt. And, maybe this will be the case for some of you in search of a useful, effective app. So far, just about 85,000 downloads of this app have been recorded! 

The app has helped me be a more prepared and educated user of our natural resources. For example, I have used it to know what lands are private or public - or the closing time for early teal season. In practical terms, the app means I no longer need to write the closing times on my hand anymore! Ever try to wash off ink from your skin? Not fun.

This is a one-stop shop that has helped me to have a more successful and enjoyable hunt, and Hunt Wild Wisconsin has no cost to the user. For me to have the ability to not carry all of the different regulation pamphlets and to know where I am on public land is a huge benefit; I now have all of the answers with just a couple quick clicks in this app. I don’t even have to have reception when I use the "plan my trip" function. This app was designed to cater to all; young, old, technologically sound or not. Being a responsible and ethical hunter means being prepared.  Hunt Wild Wisconsin will make you prepared hunter.  Want to know more about Hunt Wild Wisconsin? Read on...
By Bruce Urben, President
In starting this decoy corner article, I first want to thank several readers (WWA members) who caught my error in the recent Resop article in regard to the location of Lake Poygan. While I could claim I put the location of Lake Poygan in Green Lake County to see if anyone was really reading my articles, it was indeed an error on my part; Lake Poygan is located in Winnebago and Waushara counties. Thanks for catching my mistake!

In another update, I was recently contacted by Andy Schoneich, co-author (along with Terry Smart) of the book titled “Evans Decoys , a Collector's Comprehensive Pictorial Reference Guide”. Andy and Terry are collectors and experts on Evans Decoys. After reading my article on Evans Decoys , Andy asked if we would let our members know that his book on Evans Decoys is available to further help identify and value Evans Decoys. You can contact Andy at his website.

You can obtain a copies of his book and he has also offered to do free evaluations of any Evans Decoys for our WWA members. This service may be invaluable to those thinking of collecting Evans Decoys or have an Evans Decoy and would like to discuss real values. Thanks for your offer Andy, and for reading WWA’s Decoy Corner ! Now on to this month’s carver profile.
The Decoy Corner By Bruce Urben
Warren P. Dettman - "Milwaukee School" Carver
Warren Dettman was another Wisconsin original decoy carver. He was born in 1904, lived in Milwaukee for most of his life, and was employed by the Milwaukee Public Museum from 1935 until he retired in 1968. He was employed as a taxidermist at the museum and worked with Owen Gromme (see previous Decoy Corner article on Gromme) who was the curator of the Museum’s Division of Birds and Mammals. While at the Museum, Dettman was paid under the WPA (Federal Works Projects Administration) to provide jobs that included teaching the arts.

Over the years, Dettman carved many high quality decoys that he used for collecting live specimens for the museum, and of course for his own hunting use. His decoys were hollowed wood, superbly painted with great care showing plumage perfection, as you might expect to see from a trained taxidermist. Most of Warren’s decoys had carved wings and tails and many were “chip carved” to give texture to his decoys and reduce glare on the water. It is known that Warren carved mallards, pintails, ringnecks, widgeon, bluebills and canvasbacks. Read on...

Mark your calendars for the next WWA event near you and visit our Events Calendar for everything happening in 2019:
February 7-10: Visit our booth at the La Crosse Sportshow - get your Class A & UTV raffle tickets, find out more about WWA & our new La Crosse Chapter !

2019 Wisconsin Waterfowler Hunters' Conference
Wisconsin's waterfowl hunters are encouraged to attend the 17 th annual Wisconsin Waterfowl Hunters’ Conference which will be held on March 9th at the Mead Hotel & Conference Center in Wisconsin Rapids. The Conference is designed, developed and managed by a committee of independent waterfowl hunters and is supported by individuals, conservation organizations, private businesses and government agencies

Calling All WWA Youth Members That Like To Cook:
Are you, or do you have, an 8-13 year old child that loves to cook? FOX’s hit cooking competition series,  MasterChef Junior wants to hear from you! WWA is spreading the word in the hopes one of our youth members could be chosen to compete; if so, we will provide WWA apparel for the appearance.

Thank You to Our 2018 Sponsors & Donors
Gold Level Sponsor
Cabelas Logo
Silver Level Sponsor
Bronze Level Sponsors
Vortex Optics
State Level Sponsors
State Level Donors
Thanks to all those that have cherished the memory of a loved one by donating in memoriam to the Wisconsin Waterfowl Association.
Those recently memorialized were:
  • Mr. Glenn Zachow - Donors: Greg Rausch, Tony LaMacchia, Jim Freck, Mike Depies
  • Mr. David E. Hughes - Donors: Mr. & Mrs. Jim Tavares, Mr. & Mrs. Fred Welch
  • Mr. Joseph Porten- Donors: WWA 2018 Board of Directors and Staff
  • Attorney Dan Fay - Donor: Dale W. Arenz
  • Mr. Robert J. Kuehl - Donor: Ms. Penny D. Kuehl
  • Mr. John Held - Donor: Ms. Kathy Shurts
  • Mr. John Holmes - Donors: Dale W. Arenz, Jon Bergquist
  • Mr. Jay Reed - Donor: Bob & Cookie Olson 
  • Mr. Norman J. Brady - Donor: Dale W. Arenz
  • Mr. Robert E. Strous - Donor: Bruce Urben

If you'd like to consider a lasting and meaningful memorial fund contribution for that friend, hunting partner, co-worker or relative with WWA, please contact us . Each contribution will offer:
  • A personalized letter to the family of the deceased,
  • A letter from WWA sent to the donor confirming contribution for tax purposes (address & individual donation amount must be supplied),
  • The option for the donor to designate which WWA program they wish their contributions be put towards, and a listing in this section for the duration of one year
The Wisconsin Waterfowl Association is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission focuses on wetland and upland habitat restoration, youth and adult environmental education and environmental- and hunter-based legislation.  
To contact us call (800) 524-8460 or (262) 968-1722, email wwainfo@centurytel.net or visit our website at  www.wisducks.org