Outdoors notebook: Director search finally underway
The Game Commission has finally gotten around to advertising for a new executive director.
Carl Roe has held the top post at the agency since December 2005. His retirement, which is effective Jan. 17, was announced in a news release on July 9.
It took nearly three months — until Oct. 2 — for the board to advertise that it's seeking a replacement. Candidates have until Oct. 31 to submit a resume.
There's been a lot of talk in the outdoors community about why things have taken so long, especially given lawmakers are exploring the idea of merging the Game and Fish and Boat commissions.
A report on that is due before year's end.
One rumor was that one or more commissioners had asked staff in Gov. Tom Corbett's office for an opinion on a couple of hand-picked prospective candidates.
Corbett spokeswoman Kirsten Page said, however, that the office did not “review any resumes, nor offer any thoughts on any prospective candidates' qualifications.”
It's not been past practice, certainly, for the commission to ask for help in choosing a leader, said Ralph Martone of New Castle. Tradition has been for all eight commissioners to be involved in interviewing candidates and selecting an executive director.
“I would hope the board would be that independent again,” he said.
Commission president Bob Schlemmer said the goal is to have Roe's successor in place as quickly as possible. But if the search takes until after Roe is gone, the commission “has a lot of talented people” who can keep the agency running, he said.
According to research by the Archery Trade Association, 18.9 million Americans 18 or older participated in archery or bowhunting in 2012. That's about 8 percent of the total U.S. population.
Of those archers, 10.4 million participated in target archery only. About 1.9 million bowhunted only, while 6.5 million were both hunters and target shooters. Just less than one-third of all archers are women.
The Midwest has the most archers, as a percentage of the overall population, with 10.8 percent, followed in order by the Northeast, South and West.
The Fish and Boat Commission is trying to get some of the weeds at Cranberry Glade Lake in Somerset County under control.
The agency applied chemical weed killer to a small portion of the lake closest to the dam and boat launch earlier this season, said Tom Qualters, supervisor of the agency's southwest region office in Somerset.
The idea is to make is easier for shore anglers to fish, he said.
The commission has drawn down the lake several feet every other winter, but that hasn't had the desired effect.