WYOGA News & Updates - August 2020

We cordially invite you to attend the 64th Annual Wyoming Outfitters & Guides Association Annual Convention and Big Game Awards Banquet, March 31– April 1, 2023, Casper, WY. This three-day event is sure to be a good time.
Special Guests are: 

Guest of Honor: First Lady, Jennie Gordon Food from the Field Update

Guest Speaker: Congresswoman, Harriet Hageman 

We will kick off the event with the general membership meeting on Friday, March 31st. The meeting agenda is full of important topics and information that you will not want to miss. 

>>Click Here to Download Registration Form Now<<


Tentative WYOGA Convention Agenda

Thursday, March 30, 2023 

3:00pm-5:00pm: First Aid/CPR: Instructors: Mike & Christy Abbott, Air Idaho (Tetons)

5:00pm-8:00pm: Vendor Setup (Terrace)


Friday, March 31, 2023 (Wyoming Theatre)

8:30am: Snacks & Coffee provided on the Terrace
• Registration
• Trade Show Opens

9:00am-10:30am: General Membership Meeting

10:30am-11:00am: Morning Break: Sponsored by: Wyoming Whiskey

11:00am-12:00pm: Daniel Thompson, Large Carnivore Section Supervisor, Wildlife Division, Wyoming Game & Fish Department: Black Bear Hunting Seasons

12:00pm-1:30pm: Lunch (North Ballroom)

1:30pm-5:00pm: Continue General Membership Meeting
• Election of Officer’s 

5:30pm-9:00pm: “Welcome Party” (Sponsored by: Best of the West Outfitters)
Outdoor Dream Foundation Awards Presentation: Brad Jones
Pack Horse Race: $50 per team (North & Central Ballrooms)


Saturday, April 1, 2023 (Wyoming Theatre)

8:30am : Snacks & Coffee provided on the Terrace.
Sponsored by: Rough Country Outfitters
• Registration
• Trade Show Opens

9:00am-10:30am: Doug Brimeyer, Deputy Chief, Wildlife Division, Wyoming Game & Fish Department
• Craig Smith, Deputy Chief, Wildlife Division, Wyoming Game & Fish Department
• Non-resident License Allocation Update

10:30am-11:30am: Wyoming State Board of Outfitters & Professional Guides Roundtable    

11:30pm-1:00pm: Lunch/Trade Show Closes
Guest of Honor: Congresswoman, Harriet Hageman

1:00pm-2:30pm: Brian Nesvik, Director, Wyoming Game & Fish Department: Legislative & Commission Update

2:30pm-3:00pm: Afternoon Break: Sponsored by: Wyoming Whiskey



Saturday, April 1, 2023 (North & Central Ballrooms)

5:00pm: WYOGA Big Game Awards Banquet. Cocktail party and games (Terrace)

6:00pm-10:00pm: Banquet Doors open at 6:00pm
Guest of Honor: First Lady, Jennie Gordon (Food from the Field update)


Please mark your calendar to attend this fun filled event. 


Thank you to our sponsors:

APRIL 4–6. 2024 in CASPER, WY


2023 Big Game Awards entries are due April 1st. If you need the packets
re-emailed to you, please contact Laurie at gro.agoyw@agoyw

By Barbara Crown, Hunter Information Service

Scott Talbott, former director of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, has joined Safari Club International (SCI) as the organization’s new guides and outfitters liaison. This position is a critical bridge between SCI and the guide and outfitter community. Talbott will represent SCI and serve as a communications conduit to professional hunting associations throughout North America, Africa and other regions. He will be responsible for informing and educating professional hunters on SCI’s hunter advocacy work and the benefits of joining and supporting SCI and its mission. He will also assist with  recruiting top rate operators as new exhibitors at SCI’s annual convention.

“SCI and the guide and outfitters community are dependent on each other for success, making the liaison position a highly important one for both groups,” says Mike Rogers, VP of Member Services. “Scott will help guides and outfitters understand all the ways they can use SCI’s many programs and marketing resources to their best advantage while also helping SCI grow our fundraising capabilities to support conservation and defend the freedom to hunt from an ever-growing variety of attacks worldwide. Scott’s experience as the director of game and fish for one of the premier hunting states in the U.S. uniquely qualifies him to manage this symbiotic relationship.”

The guide and outfitters liaison represents SCI at all the association meetings and events held in North America and overseas. He builds and maintains relationships that allow him to counsel SCI on matters affecting the guide and outfitter groups and to help resolve any complaints or problems from or about outfitters. Talbott will also instruct guides on how to measure trophies using the SCI Record Book method and encourage them to have clients submit exceptional specimens for listing in the book. He will report to hunting professionals on all activities, advocacy efforts, litigation and government relations work conducted by SCI to protect hunting businesses and will otherwise serve as SCI spokesperson to the guiding and outfitting industry. Additionally, Talbott will help track changing regulations and any proposed legislation impacting the professional hunting industry.

Talbott is a Wyoming resident who spent his childhood on a ranch near Laramie, Wyoming. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wyoming, and soon after began a 34-year career with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. His career included a diverse set of positions, such as technical work in upland game bird and waterfowl habitat, elk feeding, and bird farms, and then as a special deputy game warden. He was a commissioned wildlife law enforcement officer for over 30 years, holding several positions ranging from game warden to deputy chief of the wildlife division. During his career, he worked on many challenging issues such as chronic wasting disease, brucellosis, greater sage grouse, access to private lands, large carnivore conflict resolution and many endangered species issues, including gray wolves and grizzly bears. Talbott was appointed director of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department by Governor Matt Mead in 2011 and served there until his retirement in 2019. Talbott enjoys hunting, fishing, backcountry horse trips and spending time with his family and friends. 


WYOGA Membership: 

As I prepare this legislative update, it is January 31st, day 15 of the 37 day session.  We have not yet crossed the Rubicon for the General Session.  What I can tell you is this session is markedly different from past session where I advocated on your behalf.  For starters we now have 62 House members and 31 Senators, up from the usual 60-30 split.  Gone are many of the faces that we worked with over the years and who had taken the time and shown the interest to understand the outfitting industry and the Game and Fish.  We have 1/3rd of the House of Representatives who are Freshmen and a Majority Leader who is in his second term.  A great deal of institutional knowledge from the House is gone.  Thankfully we have Speaker Albert Sommers, a true friend of WYOGA, leading the body.

The House and Senate have hit the point where no more bills may be introduced.  In total there are 288 House bills and 183 Senate bills plus a bevy of joint resolutions.  WYOGA is actively tracking 16 bills that have a direct impact on outfitting plus numerous other bills that could impact you on the periphery.  Senate Travel, Recreation and Wildlife (TRW) Chairwoman Schuler has been a pleasure to work with and is willing to listen to our concerns.  We had a bit of a scare on the House side when TRW Chairwoman Newsome was sidelined from the Capitol with a broken leg that required surgery.  She is back in the building, and the House TRW Committee is running smoothly under her professional leadership.  We have lots of new members on the House and Senate TRW Committees who we will need to connect with over the interim and begin to educate them about the industry.

WYOGA is actively working to kill a wanton waste bill for large carnivores as well as the transition to weighted bonus points.  We are working to push the nonresident, special license fee increase bill.  This was a taskforce recommendation, unfortunately the original version of this bill was defeated on a procedural question in the Senate.  Revenue raising bills must originate in the House.  We are also working on the trespassing issue and are hopeful that the bill developed over the interim will move in the next few days.

I am always available for your thoughts and concerns on any of the pieces of legislation and appreciate the members willing to engage when we send out action alerts.  It’s my pleasure working on your behalf and I look forward to seeing you all in Casper in April for the legislative debrief.  

Thank you!
Bill Novotny, Lobbyist

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Contact us for more information:
Wyoming Outfitters & Guides Association
P.O. Box 2650, Casper, WY 82602

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