News Releases

Winter Haven landowner honored for work with youth hunting program

News Release

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Media contact: Susan Smith, 850-528-1755

At its meeting in Naples, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission presented Gene Paul of Winter Haven with the 2010 "Landowner of the Year Award" for its Youth Hunting Program - a program aimed at providing quality hunting experiences for 12- to 17-year-olds to increase the number of youths involved in the tradition of hunting.

Paul has allowed the FWC to run youth hunts for deer and wild hogs on his property for the past two years, providing six hunts to more than 60 youths, and has future hunts scheduled this season. He also hosted a hog hunt last year for a dozen women.

Paul and his family enjoy giving opportunities to youths on their 2,900-acre Tippen Bay Ranch in southeast DeSoto County for the joy of seeing the kids' smiling faces after their first hunt and harvest.

"These kids and their parents are able to enjoy the natural environment, swamp buggy rides and fishing in the stocked pond," said huntmaster Dave Klein. "This is one of the best opportunities for some of these kids to get introduced to hunting and family time in the outdoors."

"Mr. Paul spends so much of his time and money making sure everyone has a great time and successful hunt in a family atmosphere, with safety as his number-one concern," said FWC hunter safety program coordinator Bill Cline. "He does so much for this program by giving back to the sport he loves. He does that by helping create tomorrow's hunters and promoting the hunting tradition."

To find out how you can become a volunteer landowner or to learn more about Florida's Youth Hunting Program, go to

FWC Facts:
A group of clams is called a bed.

Learn More at AskFWC