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Hall of Fame class of 2009

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Bill Guerrini, the late Don Hankla, Dwight Hoffard and George Rabb were selected as the four 2009 inductees to the Illinois Outdoor of Fame.

The four were selected from a final list of 13 pared from 33 original nominations.

In other news from the Hall of Fame, according to Illinois Conservation Foundation executive director Greg Legan, is the permanent home for the Hall at Starved Rock is on hold because of structure issues at the log cabin behind the visitor's center. I still think that would be the ideal location for the Hall. (Note: wording in graph added Friday afternoon to clarify.)

Legan also had a sample of the big wood plaques that they hope to use when the Hall finally gets a permanent home.


Obviously, this is Bill Cullerton Sr from the second class in 2003.

Details of the 2009 selections are below.

For the eighth class, I was part of the final selection process for the first time. Final selectors this time were two members of the press, myself and Ralph Loos, editor of the Illinois Outdoor News; two board members of the Illinois Conservation Foundation, John Kidd Jr. and Legan; and two members of the private sector, Dan Frisk, Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge manager, and Ken Polhamus, owner of Great Plains Drywall in Rockford.

Ron Allen, who chaired the final selection but did not vote, said from now on all applications would be saved for 10 years, and could be updated and amended during that time.

And having been there for the selection process, I would suggest that nominators work with ICF staff to sharpen and hone nominations.

Here are the nine other finalists: Warren Gale, Alfred Hayden, David Kenney, Allie Lymenstull, Rep. Dan Reitz, L. H. Bert Princen, Denny Sands, Bill and Arlene Sowle, and Walt Watts.

Details are below of the inductees who will be honored in late winter at the big fund-raising banquet at Pheasant Run in St. Charles.

Guerrini is the heart and soul of the Spring Valley Walleye Club and the Masters Walleye Circuit's annual appearance on the Illinois River.

Hankla was a full-time volunteer for the Cache Watershed for 20 years after his retirement in 1987.

Hoffard was the reason the Southern Illinois Celebration of National Hunting and Fishing Days is one of the nation's best, and maybe the state's greatest or most versatile all-round outdoor safety instructor.

Rabb during nearly half at century at the Brookfield Zoo fostered international conservation research and education.

For more information ICF or to nominate somebody in coming years, go to

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This page contains a single entry by Dale Bowman published on October 24, 2008 7:42 AM.

Look back in Chicago tops Midwest Fishing Report 10-22-08 (late add) was the previous entry in this blog.

Fall mushrooms on a Wild Sunday 10-26-08 is the next entry in this blog.

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