About Us

About Us

The Future Angler Foundation (FAF) is an incorporated 501(c)(3) non-profit organization formed in April of 2012 by a small group of anglers dedicated to help grow participation in angling and boating through education and outreach.The FAF works to “Create New Anglers” by collaborating with individuals and organizations throughout the United States to expose potential new anglers and boaters of all ages to the sport of fishing and to boating by educating them on how to catch fish and to boat safely. The educational component of what the FAF does is critical to the future of the sportfishing and boating because equipment alone will not catch fish or assure participants will be safe on the water, each angler/boater must have the knowledge needed to use the equipment effectively and safely.Additionally, with the introduction of Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) in the U.S, anglers and boaters must know the part they must play in slowing the spread of AIS if we are to protect our lakes and streams for future generations. As such, the FAF partners with state and federal agencies and other conservation-oriented non-profits to assist in educating anglers and boaters on how to become to become good stewards of the water by knowing the steps they should take to slow the spread of AIS.The FAF is utilizing angler/boater education and outreach to help reverse the attrition that has taken place in the sportfishing and boating over the past few decades, and to support the R3 efforts that strive to bring the next generation participants to the outdoors. FAF does so through the use of networking and its hands on grassroots approach that has proven to be extremely effective and through the digital content that we have created that now make millions of impressions annually. It is our opinion that participation in outdoor activities like fishing are at the core of the American way of life and essential to the future of our nation as we know it.Specifically, the FAF works to:

  • Support volunteers and organizations that host angling educational events that contribute to an increase in participation in angling and boating. The FAF does not host these events; rather the FAF supports the volunteers who host them by granting them no charge: rod/reel combos, angling promotional items such as T-shirts, and angling education handouts/booklets. Average attendance numbers at FAF supported events have been 20,000 youth and parents annually with an average of 4000 Rod/Reel combos and 4000 T-Shirts donated annually.
  • Create digital angling and boating safety content that creates millions of impressions annually with financial support provided through grants and partnerships with the: Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Coast Guard, National Marine Manufacturers Association, Yamaha, and Onyx. This content has been created through an exceptional partnership with Discover Mediaworks and their Emmy award winning “Into the Outdoors” (ITO) television network as the distribution partner. The partnership with Discover Mediaworks has created a video series and corresponding educational curriculum under the “Getting Families Fishing” (GFF) brand targeted at grade school and middle school age students to educate them about angling and boating. The series is distributed through the Discover Mediaworks’ “Into the Outdoors” distribution network for download and use by the general public, sportfishing /marine industry, R3 Community and State Agencies, on a free source/no charge basis. This educational digital content is explained in detail at the following link: Getting Families Fishing.
  • Create an infrastructure to support knowledgeable angler/boater volunteers to educate anglers of all experience levels at venues like: National Parks, National Forests, State Parks, State Forests, and Federal/State Wildlife areas, fishing clubs, other outdoor related organizations, and angling events.
  • Develop programs to bring angling/boating safety into the schools as part of a school curriculum. FAF supported volunteers donate their time to go into school systems to educate students about angling /boating and they also help to train the teachers in those school systems. Free source Getting Families Fishing/Boating curriculum that is certified for use in the school systems is available to the school systems at no charge.
  • Expose the work FAF supported volunteers and programs are doing to educate anglers/boaters of all ages through the FAF website.
  • Works with the fishing and boating industry, Federal and State Agencies in a manner that will garner support for the FAF’s mission to educate anglers/boaters of all ages.

The majority of the Future Angler Foundation’s management is provided by Patrick Neu, FAF President, with oversight from the FAF Board of Directors. The FAF currently has no paid employees but is working with independent contractors to that handle the: FAF grant administration, social media admin, fund raising activities, website management, accounting function, digital content creation and product distribution for FAF supported programs. Funding is provided by partner contributions, donations from the general public, donations from businesses, grants from government agencies and grants from other nonprofit organizations.The FAF has no investments or real-estate assets. The FAF activities are summarized below, with estimated percentages of resource (cost and volunteers’ time) allocation:

  • 35% Equipment/support materials gifted to supported event attendees.
  • 50% Production costs for “Getting Families Fishing” program content/curriculum
  • 12% Grant Administration, communication, accounting, record keeping, and Futureangler.org web site (grant admin, website admin, event admin, content creation, social media admin, accounting functions are completed by independent contractors)
  • 3% Travel expense to attend angling related educational conferences and trade shows

The FAF is overseen by its board of directors who have extensive experience in areas such as: AIS prevention, industry advocacy, angler education and sales/marketing. The board includes: Patrick Neu-FAF President & NPAA President; Kevin VanDam, professional bass anglings most recognized angler and accomplished tackle/marine industry businessman; Thom Dammrich, past President of the National Marine Manufacturers Assoc. and current/past board member for numerous boating/fishing industry associations; Jim Schiefelbein, passionate about angling and a successful entrepreneur and marketing expert with vast experience in numerous industries including the fishing industry; Sam Calabro, avid angler/past sales/marketing executive at Union Pacific Railroad who is acting as the FAF’s Vice President-Industry Relations; Jesse Simpkins, senior marketing director for St. Croix Rods and past board chairman for the American Sportfishing Assoc.; Chris Horton, Senior Director, Midwestern States/Fisheries Policy for the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation.

Meet the Team

Patrick Neu

President and co-founder of the Future Angler Foundation, outdoor market consultant with career long experience in the outdoor industry and the President of the National Professional Anglers Association (NPAA).

Sam Calabro

Vice President Industry Relations, Sam worked in the transportation industry nearly 30 years for Union Pacific Railroad as a Senior VP of Sales and Marketing. He qualified for early retirement in the Fall of 2017 and is now donating his time to help grow the foundation. Sam is an avid angler and has fished all across the U.S.

Kevin VanDam

Top fishing tournament money winner of all time, angler educator, successful sportfishing industry promotion specialist, and passionate outdoorsman.

Dr. Thom Dammrich

Recently retired president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association where he led the organization for the past 20 years, RBFF board member, avid angler and boater.

Jim Schiefelbein

Has over 30 years’ experience as a successful entrepreneur and marketing expert who has formed and sold numerous companies including two in the outdoor industry. Jim is an avid angler/boater and has held other board positions in the outdoor industry.

Jesse Simpkins

With over 20 years of experience in Sales and Marketing in the fishing industry, Jesse Simpkins is a consummate sportfishing industry professional. Jesse is a past Board Chairman for the American Sportfishing Association’s and is the Director of Marketing at St. Croix Rods in Park Falls, WI.

Chris Horton

Senior Director, Midwestern States/Fisheries Policy for the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation. Prior to beginning work for CSF, he served as the Conservation Director for B.A.S.S., one of the largest angling organizations in the world. His passion for angling is second to none.

Our passion for the sport and our desire to share angling as a life changing activity with future anglers/boaters through education and outreach is the driving force behind the formation of this foundation. We truly believe that by exposing non-anglers/boaters to sportfishing/boating and at the same time reactivating anglers who have not participated in these sports recently, we can solidify a place for sportfishing/boating in our American culture for generations to come. We hope that you will join the FAF in our mission to grow angling/boating participation through education and outreach by donating to the Future Angler Foundation today!

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