Bill Bosch, former president of the Oceola Fish and Game Club, was elected president of the B.C. Wildlife Federation at its 56th annual general meeting in Courtenay on the weekend.
More than 250 delegates from around the province attended the four-day convention, including delegates and youth delegates from local clubs such as the Oceola club, the Peachland Sportsmen’s Association, the Black Mountain Sportsman’s Association and the Kelowna and District Fish and Game Club.
They rubbed shoulders with, and heard talks from politicians such as Premier Christy Clark, Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Minister Steve Thomson, Agriculture Minister Don McRae, local MPs and MLAs, mayors and government staff.
Other speakers included marine biologist Alexandra Morton and Grand Chief Stewart Phillip.
More than $72,000 was raised at the annual fund-raiser for conservation projects around the province.
Although Bosch has been on the board for a number of years, including as vice-president the past year, he said being in the top position will be a learning curve for him.
Continuing work on fish and wildlife issues will be a feature of the coming term, along with efforts to resolve resource allocation issues, he said.
Lobby work will continue to try and encourage the provincial government to allot funds for doing wildlife inventory work, he said.
There was a good turnout of young people at this year’s convention, and they were delighted to be photographed with the premier, he commented.
Membership in the BCWF had dipped to around 27,000 a few years ago, but it’s gradually been building back up and is estimated at 41,000 now.
Bosch is joined on the executive by fellow Oceola club member Jesse Zeman who is finishing his two-year term.
The other members of the executive are: vice-presidents Rick Mayor of Dawson Creek and George Wilson of Fernie, and treasurer John Shepherd of Courtenay. Directors are Joan McKay of Oliver, Carl Gitcheff of Dawson Creek, John Thornton of Victoria, Ed George of Delta, Doug Peck of Sparwood, Richard Green and Harvey Andrusak of Nelson.