Tackle industry national award for Recfishwest CEO

Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland has been recognised for his dedication to making fishing better, accepting a national accolade from the Australian Fishing Trade Association.

Dr Rowland was pleasantly surprised to be presented with the 2021 Industry Recognition Award at a recent meeting Recfishwest had with leading members of the WA tackle industry.

“As Recfishwest Operations Manager, I would like to celebrate this year’s Australian Fishing Trade Association Industry Recognition Award, which was awarded to Recfishwest CEO Dr Andrew Rowland,” Recfishwest’s Leyland Campbell said.

Dr Rowland, centre, accepts the bestowed AFTA Industry Recognition Award.

“AFTA’s Board received several nominations for this award from around Australia, but voted unanimously to give Andrew the gong for the contribution Recfishwest has made to recreational fishing through his leadership.

“On behalf of the Recfishwest team, congratulations Andrew.”

The award recognised:

  • Andrew’s leading role in helping steer the community and industry through the early phases of COVID restrictions, ensuring people were able to get out fishing again at the earliest opportunity — then presenting and securing a multi-million-dollar recfishing recovery package from the State Government presented by Premier Mark McGowan in August last year;
  • Under Andrew’s guidance, Recfishwest undertaking important studies highlighting the economic contribution made by recreational fishing — $2.4 billion State-wide and $331 million through recreational salmon fishing, with both of these studies again being announced by the Premier;
  • Driving WA fish stocking, trialing FADs and installing artificial reefs – all of these initiatives were made possible through Andrew’s and Recfishwest’s efforts to ensure there are more places to fish and more fish to catch.

    Dr Rowland is passionate about protecting and developing fishing as a West Aussie way of life.

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Driven by a love of fishing

“Working closely with Andrew, I know he isn’t one to beat his own drum, as here at Recfishwest we are very much a team who are all driven by a love of fishing,” Leyland said.

“However, every team needs a good leader and we are really pleased he has got some well-deserved recognition for his passion for and commitment to protecting recfishing as a West Aussie way of life.

“The tackle industry is part of our community and a powerful ally when it comes to advocating in the sector’s interests — so seeing the recognition there for Andrew and Recfishwest’s work bodes well for an ongoing good working relationship with the industry.”

Leyland added it was pleasing for Recfishwest to once again be recognised for leading the way for WA recfishing at a national level.

“We are always a forward-looking organisation here at Recfishwest and be assured we won’t be resting on any laurels any time soon in relentlessly pursuing our purpose of great fishing experiences for all in the WA community, forever,” Leyland said.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank AFTA for recognising Andrew’s efforts.”

Dr Rowland — pictured with former Fisheries Minsiter Peter Tinley, Premier Mark McGowan and Recfishwest Chairman Tim Bray — at the announcement of the multi-million dollar recfishing COVID recovery package, which will fund multiple innovative fish stocking programs and three artificial reefs.