FTTU Members Award Recipients
Inside the Outdoors, March 26, 2010

Banquet and Raffle that took place at the American Legion, Latrobe.

Richard Rohrbaugh, Ralph Koscianki and Dr. Lou Izzo were all handed certificates by FTTU President Monty Murty, as a sold out crowd looked on.

Rohrbaugh, owner of The Angler’s Room, 333 Route 217, Latrobe, was given the Ed Bordas Memorial Award, which was presented to him honoring the contributions made to the local chapter by a business or organization. According to Scott Minster, secretary, “As owner of The Angler’s Room, proprietor Rohrbaugh has been instrumental in the planning of our banquets. His business has donated many fly fishing rods and other items for banquet raffle prizes and has served as an outlet for ticket sales for over a decade.”

Ed Bordas had a keen interest in FTTU. As a member, he not only believed in, but also supported the organization’s goals of conservation, restoration of resources and education of youth. The former Greensburg schoolteacher contributed much to the organization as he taught members and youth how to tie flies to catch steelhead, a fish he enjoyed catching the most. Everything he learned while out in the streams, he shared with FTTU.

Each year, someone from the chapter is given the Don Robb Memorial Award recognizing a member for long term service to the chapter. This year it was given to Koscianski. The Greensburg resident served as an FTTU officer for two terms and has worked hard for the chapter as the coordination of the Rock Run and Linn Run Projects since 2004.

“Don Robb,” Minster revealed, “ran a fly fishing shop in Ligonier for many years,” he told me. “He was one of the founding members of FTTU and came up with the name for the chapter. He introduced many locals to fly fishing, fly tying and rod building, and in turn, got numerous folks involved with Trout Unlimited.”

Also annually, someone is given the Russ Mowry Silver Trout Award for volunteer service to the chapter. Izzo was this year’s recipient. From 2006 – 2009, the Jeannette resident served as chapter president. “During his tenure as president,” Minster stated,

“FTTU completed work on our Mill Creek Projects and won The Best Pennsylvania TU Chapter Award in 2008.”

Russ Mowry was a legendary fly tier from Latrobe. He was president of FTTU and long time active member. He and Latrobe’s Ken Igo invented the green Weenie, a popular trout fly that has been in demand across the United States for many years now.

All the proceeds taken in from the Banquet and Raffle will benefit projects of FTTU.

Since we are getting closer to opening day trout, I decided to contact Dan Ahlstrom who heads up a company called KassWinns, Inc. He has some innovative products in which anglers may want to invest. The entrepreneur advised me to view his website.

When I pulled up www.kasswinns.com, there were two products that jumped right out at me, and I felt compelled to order one right off the bat. It was a “Take One Minnow Trap”. This revolutionary new product is a faster way to secure a minnow from a bait container without using a net or reaching in cold water and getting one’s hand freezing cold.

According to Ahlstrom, “When using a conventional minnow net, numerous minnows are scooped up at once. “The Take One Minnow Trap” not only cuts baiting time to a minimum, but reduces the physical abuse given to minnows that may kill them.”

The Knotter, a must have item for all fishermen and women, is a pen-type “fast” device for tying knots. With a couple of quick turns one can have a knot that will hold any lure on one’s line in no time flat. Recommended for young or old alike, it can be used in cold, windy or regular conditions. If you log onto his website, you will be able to see The Knotter demonstrated plus other creative products that you’ll want to add as necessities at best!

- Paul J. Volkmann
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