Like-minded conservationists share of themselves, their passions and outdoor pursuits.
Story and Photography by Bill L. Olson
The outdoors is a special place for so many of us. We not only share wide open spaces but they are our escapes. It is also our connection to something so much bigger that continues to grow throughout an entire outdoor career — even a lifetime.
A good example is what is taught in hunter safety classes of the maturation process hunters go through. Anglers go through a similar process of relishing the harvest, the techniques and finally just embracing the experiences.
Then there are those that take their passion with the outdoors much further. There are scores of individual volunteers I’ve had the pleasure of serving with on boards of directors and local chapters of conservation organizations. Their backgrounds, stories, and talents are impressive with passions and dedication that are exemplary.
One is a lady I met in 2010 during my second time to serve on the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s Board of Directors. During my first year back on the board as the “Past Board Member” representative she was simply “a voice” heard periodically on conference calls during the finance subcommittee’s meetings. However, when Debra McCormick of Minnesota commented or offered advice it was worthy of paying attention to what was said.
A year later, in Reno at the RMEF annual convention I had the pleasure of meeting Deb in person as a newly elected board member. Her infectious smile, confident demeanor and obvious zest for life would attract most anyone.
As we visited during breaks I started to learn bits and pieces of her life, and a remarkable story. Not wanting to pry too deeply I was enlightened about this lady through an article written by Bill Mytton back in the May/June 2008 issue of Bugle magazine. Mytton worked for RMEF in their lands management program for Wyoming and Montana from 2002 through 2007.