The NDA tallied another successful and exciting year for their Deer Steward program with a powerful lineup of courses.
“This program has proven to have such a large impact across the country and it’s really exciting to see it continue growing,” said Nick Pinizzotto, NDA President & CEO. “These programs give deer hunters the knowledge they need to go make an actual difference where they hunt. That is an extremely powerful tool when implemented on this scale and we are already seeing noticeable changes.”
2022 began with a unique in-person Deer Steward Level 1 custom course for Whitetail Properties in Illinois, followed by a Habitat Enhancement Module for their Land Specialists in Kentucky. This year also marked their biggest Deer Steward course yet, featuring a custom training for the Arkansas Game & Fish Commission in Little Rock. With nearly 90 biologists, technicians, foresters and WMA managers in attendance, this proved to be the largest audience in the program’s history. NDA has held custom courses for five other state wildlife agencies including Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio, and Tennessee.
In August, NDA wrapped up another public Level 2 course in Wisconsin alongside event partner, Vortex Optics. Vortex Optics offered a private tour for all attendees to experience their impressive headquarters and world class shooting and training facility, the Vortex Edge. With nearly 40 students from 15 states, the organizations spent several days discussing all things deer biology, habitat management, population ecology, hunting strategies and more led by NDA’s Kip Adams, Matt Ross, Ben Westfall and Dr. Craig Harper from the University of Tennessee.
Across all of NDA’s Deer Steward in-person and online courses this year, the nearly 300 attendees are projected to impact more than 2.3 million acres by implementing course knowledge on the lands they hunt or manage. The friendships, knowledge, and appreciation for deer management gained through these in-person courses are an integral part of the program. It is extremely important to the NDA that they are back in full swing, educating and interacting with deer hunters, landowners, and natural resource professionals.
With big things planned for the Deer Steward program next year, NDA plans to announce the dates and locations of their 2023 in-person courses in the next issue of Quality Whitetails, along with exciting news about the online Deer Steward 1 program.
About the National Deer Association
Formally launched on November 10, 2020, the National Deer Association is a non-profit deer conservation group that leads efforts to ensure the future of wild deer, wildlife habitat and hunting. Formed by combining the strengths of two long-serving, successful organizations, the National Deer Association has a combined 38 years of action that has changed deer management for the betterment of hunting and protected North America’s most vital and admired game species for future generations. Visit DeerAssociation.com or follow @deerassociation on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and TikTok.