September 12, 2023

MDIFW NEWS: Commissioner Camuso Honors Norridgewock Man With Outdoor Lifetime Achievement Award

AUGUSTA, Maine - Jack Gibson of Norridgewock was honored Saturday evening with the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Lifetime Outdoor Achievement Award. The award was presented to Gibson by MDIFW Commissioner Judy Camuso at the annual Sportsman's Alliance of Maine banquet. The annual award honors individuals who are dedicated to the stewardship and wise use of Maines natural resources, and who have been or are active in Maines rich outdoor traditions.

"It is an honor to present the award to Jack Gibson," said MDIFW Commissioner Judy Camuso. Along with being an avid angler and hunter who passed on his passion to family and friends, Jack worked tirelessly in the community to protect and conserve the outdoors so that these outdoor opportunities would be available to all for generations to come.

Jack grew up on a farm in Union, where in his spare time between farm chores and school, he would always find time to go fishing and hunting. He went to veterinarian school in Pennsylvania, and when he proposed to his wife Gail, he did so under the condition that they move to Maine once they completed veterinarian school.

Jack and Gail ran a successful veterinarian practice in Skowhegan, and along with sharing his passion for the Maine outdoors with his family, he worked tirelessly to protect natural areas in the central Maine area for all to enjoy.

Jack became one of the founding members of the Lake George Regional Park, where he served as president from 1994 to 2003, and under his leadership the park grew with trails, public access, and community programs such as camps where he taught kids how to fly fish, as well as a variety of other outdoor skills. Jack serves on the board of the Kennebec Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited, is a board member of the Natural Resources council of Maine, the native fish coalition, and the Pierce Pond Watershed Trust. He has spent countless hours working to ensure that Maines outdoors are protected and available to all. Jack has been a member of the Somerset Woods Trustees since 1994 and is currently president. During his time there and with his leadership, the group has conserved over a million acres, providing access to the public for a variety of outdoor recreation opportunities, as well as ensuring that these woods, waters and wildlife will always be protected. The Departments Outdoor lifetime Achievement Award is presented annually, and beginning next year, the award will be renamed the Fly Rod Crosby Outdoor Lifetime Achievement Award, honoring not only the annual recipient, but also recognizing Cornelia Fly Rod Crosby, and her work in promoting and showcasing Maines outdoors.

Crosby is well know as Maines first registered guide, a program that she worked hard to establish, but she was also an outdoor mentor, and an ambassador for the state. For 15 years, she wrote an outdoors column in the local newspaper, the Phillips Phonograph, in which she detailed her outdoor adventures, passing on tips and tales that helped others enjoy the outdoors. She organized Maine sporting exhibits at national sportsmans shows in Boston, New York and Philadelphia, showcasing the wonders of Maines rich outdoor resources, and of course, she guided, sometimes introducing people to their first taste of the Maine outdoors, and for those more experienced, helped fine tune their skills.

Nominations for the Fly Rod Crosby Outdoor Lifetime Achievement Award can be submitted anytime between January 1 and July 1 annually, and the award is presented each fall at the Sportsmans Alliance of Maine annual banquet. For more information on this award, and for the nomination form, please visit: