The Conservancy of Southwest Florida and approximately 200 Southwest Florida anglers and guides joined the 2017 RedSnook Catch and Release Charity Tournament Nov. 3-5. The Friday night kick-off event and auction raised $93,000 net to support the Conservancy’s work for estuaries protection including the publication of the 2017 Estuaries Report Card. This year, the Conservancy partnered with the Community Foundation of Collier County to raise additional funds for Everglades City fishing industry as it struggles to recover from extensive Hurricane Irma damage. Her Holiness Sai Maa and the Light Legacy Institute gave the match of $12,000 through the Community Foundation of Collier. Conservancy guests at the RedSnook kick-off party met the match, raising a total of $24,150 to support the Everglades City fishing community’s recovery efforts.

“With so many of our captains, anglers and launch sites heavily impacted by Hurricane Irma, it was inspiring to see everyone come together just weeks after the storm,” said Rob Moher, Conservancy of Southwest Florida president and CEO. “The group turned this event into an opportunity to help both the Conservancy and our partners in Everglades City who were among the most impacted. I am so grateful for the hard work of the RedSnook committee, staff and volunteers, combined with the generous support of our donors and sponsors in support of the conservation and fishing communities.” 

The 2017 RedSnook Catch and Release Charity Tournament began on Nov. 3 with a Friday Night Kick-Off Party at the Conservancy Nature Center, featuring dinner, drinks, an auction and a prize drawing. The fishing competition began Nov. 4, with dozens of teams launching from Naples, Goodland and Chokoloskee for two days of fishing, concluding Nov. 5 with a celebratory awards ceremony for anglers and guides hosted by Northern Trust at the Community Foundation of Collier County in Naples.

Henley Shotwell of Surf & Turf Custom and Mokey Shea of Northern Trust served as co-chairs of the 2017 RedSnook Catch and Release Charity Tournament. Sponsors included RGM Capital, Tompkins Family, CenturyLink, The Beacon Group at Morgan Stanley, The Kellam Group at BB&T Scott & Stringfellow, Northern Trust, Florida Weekly, Gallagher Lutgert, Newbury North, Twin Peaks, BCB Home, CliftonLarsonAllen, Naples Beach Brewery, Russell’s Clambakes, Deep Lagoon Seafood, Mitch’s Cookies, New York Pizza Pasta, Mr. Big Fish, BMANG and Whole Foods Market.

“Northern Trust is honored to be a patron and advocate for the Conservancy of Southwest Florida for over 25 years,” said Mokey Shea, Northern Trust senior vice president, managing director and co-chair of the RedSnook Catch and Release Charity Tournament. “Their efforts to preserve and nurture our wildlife, land and waterways significantly contributes to the beauty and attraction of this area and has a positive effect on our economic and civic development.” 

First place winners included:

First Place Guided Bait Division: 3,330 points

Doug Stoner and Mark Murphy
Guide: Jim Stoner

First Place Unguided Bait Division: 4,015 points

Troy Pruitt and Brian Carlos

First Place Guided Artificial Division: 3,640 points

Keith Sullivan and Andrew Dolwick

Guide: Bill Faulkner

First Place Unguided Artificial Division: 3,745 points

Kyle Coar and Pat Butler

First Place Fly Division: 2,070 points

David Rogers and Harrison Rogers

Guide: Kevin Mihailoff

In addition, awards were given in the following categories:

Winning Corporate Team: 3,340 points

BCB Homes: Scott Weidle and John Cooney
Guide: Connor McNichols

Top Female Angler: 1,585 points

Stephanie Parsons

Largest Snook, 42 inches

Scott Weidle

Largest Red, 29 inches

Charlie Mueller

About the Conservancy of Southwest Florida:

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida is a not-for-profit environmental protection organization with a 50-year history focused on the issues impacting the water, land wildlife and future of Collier, Lee, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades counties. The Conservancy accomplishes this mission through the combined efforts of its experts in the areas of environmental science, policy, education and wildlife rehabilitation. The Conservancy of Southwest Florida, world-class Nature Center and von Arx Wildlife Hospital are headquartered in Naples, Florida, 1495 Smith Preserve Way, south of the Naples Zoo off Goodlette-Frank Road. Learn more about the Conservancy’s work and how to support the quality of life in Southwest Florida www.conservancy.org