Fishing Industry News: Russel Joins ASA, Teach Promoted at St. Croix

In the latest fishing industry news, Rob Russel has joined the American Sportfishing Association member relations team and St. Croix has promoted Ryan Teach to product manager.

Fishing Industry News: Russel Joins ASA, Teach Promoted at St. Croix

The latest fishing industry news ...

Rob Russel has joined the American Sportfishing Association team as media relations manager.

“Finding the right candidate for the new Member Relations Manager position was not easy,” said Blake Swango, vice president for Trade Show and Membership. “The position required someone with a proven track record of providing outstanding customer support service to assist our members with whatever they may need. We also wanted someone who has a passion for the outdoors, including fishing and boating. Rob has both.”

ASA created the Member Relations Manager position to focus on supporting ASA’s members and be their staff point-of-contact. In addition to following up on members’ questions and requests, Russel will help to ensure that ASA’s members understand the benefits of membership and the business and legislative issues impacting their business.

“Rob will be spending a great deal of his time on the road, meeting with our members and listening to their concerns about their business and our industry,” Swango said. “I expect we’ll learn a lot over the next few years, which will help us fine-tune how we can be of greater service to them.”

Russel has close to 10 years’ experience in the customer service arena, having worked for several east coast resorts in guest relations divisions, BoatU.S. in their claims department, and for several service-based franchises in the Northern Virginia area in customer outreach and relationship development.

Teach promoted at St. Croix Rod

Ryan Teach has been promoted to product manager for St. Croix Rod, a new position in which he will seek and coordinate critical feedback from St. Croix anglers, dealers and retailers to help direct future product development.

Teach, the manager of St. Croix’s popular Factory Store for the past 2 1/2 years, has undergraduate degrees in business management and product marketing and a Master’s degree in organizational development. He will be based in the company's headquarters in Park Falls, Wis.

“From our perspective, Ryan’s case is an outstanding illustration of the angler-centric growth of the St Croix brand, as well as our culture here of creating opportunities and developing talent,” says St. Croix Director of Marketing, Jesse Simpkins. “Ryan’s passion for not only fishing — but also for the St Croix brand and our products — is evident in his work and will allow us to accelerate and add value to the product-development process within our business. This isn’t just a win for those of us here in Park Falls. Ultimately, this move is a win for all of our anglers and dealers, and I cannot express how excited we are to make this addition to the Marketing Team.”

Teach left a lucrative career with a Fortune 500 company and literally knocked on St. Croix’s front door nearly three years ago. He began this new role with St. Croix on Jan. 10.

“I had moved back to my hometown in southwest Wisconsin because of a family illness,” recalls Teach, who used the time to contemplate his next professional move. “I decided to follow my passion in the fishing industry and St. Croix was the only company I wanted to work for. Thankfully, they saw my passion for fishing, for new product development, and for their brand and offered me a job running the Factory Store. As we got to know each other even better, I was offered opportunities to apply my knowledge and prove my abilities in new product development. The past two years have been incredibly exciting for me and I’m honored by the trust St. Croix has placed in me to deliver in this new position.”

Toyota, MLF Partnership

Toyota Motor North America has agreed to a formal sponsorship deal with  Major League Fishing, which includes Team Toyota professional anglers Mike Iaconelli, Terry Scroggins, Kevin VanDam and Jacob Wheeler.

The partnership includes Fishing League Worldwide (FLW), the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, as title sponsor of the Toyota Series.

“Partnering with Major League Fishing not only allows Toyota to show continued support of our pro angling team but support the entire bass fishing community, from youth programs to the big leagues, in the pursuit of their passions,” said Matt Ozawa, engagement marketing manager, Toyota Motor North America.

Cox, Howell Sign With T-H Marine

John Cox of Florida and Randy Howell of Alabama are among the new pro anglers on the T-H Marine Supplies pro staff, which includes bass, walleye and redfish anglers.

“It’s great to see the success and hard work these anglers put in every year,” T-H Marine Sponsorship Marketing Manager Shana Ramsey said. “We raise the bar for them throughout each season, but these anglers routinely prove how they can shine through both adversity and success.”

The 2020 pro staff team includes anglers from Australia, Canada, Japan, and 19 states within the U.S.

Cox signed with T-H Marine ready to fish FLW in 2020, then he immediately started the season with a big win during the Pro Circuit Opener on Sam Rayburn. Howell, known for being a consistent performer and a hard worker for his sponsors, has sported the Blue Water LED brand. He will now run an Atlas Hydraulic Jack Plate and represent the entire T-H Marine brand in a number of ways, especially as he fishes the Bass Pro Tour in 2020.

SPRO Renews Deal With Association of Collegiate Anglers

SPRO has renewed its long-standing sponsorship of the Collegiate Bass Fishing Series and Association of Collegiate Anglers.

As a 2020 series sponsor, SPRO will receive extensive promotion with collegiate anglers throughout the nation at the five major ACA Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series events, and through the television series. In addition, SPRO has created a discount purchase program for collegiate anglers to be able to sample all the products in the SPRO lineup.

"College fishing continues to grow by leaps and bound and we love introducing SPRO products to this angler group," said Syd Rives, SPRO sales manager. "We are signing pro anglers now to our pro staff that were part of these college programs just a few years ago, so it is certainly a great route for anglers to advance in tournament competition. We are pleased to be a partner in college fishing again in 2020 and believe our products will help them catch more fish in competition this season."

Five B.A.S.S. Pros Partner With Sunline

Sunline America has added five professional anglers competing on the B.A.S.S. circuits to its prostaff.

Bassmaster Elite Series pros Carl Jocumsen, Luke Palmer and Wes Logan have teamed with Sunline, as have Bassmaster Open pros Todd Castledine and Matt Pangrac.

“We are pleased to add to our outstanding pro angler team with the additions of these anglers for 2020," said Sunline America President Nobuyuki Kajio. "Making the highest quality fishing line is the most important mission of our company, and we strive to provide anglers at this level line they can trust in any tournament condition."

Sunline is a Japanese fishing line manufacturer established in 1977. The company produces nylon, fluorocarbon, ultra high molecular weight polyethylene, polyester (polyethylene terephthalate), and metal lines.


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