Join us "Behind the Fin" with Josh Anaya, Secretary, Frostbite Fishoff Chair, Communications, and Webmaster for the Southern Greenbacks Trout Unlimited Chapter.
How long have you been a member?
I've been a member for almost two years. My first meeting was our chapter's election meeting, and we still had a couple of board positions open -- one of them being chairman of our annual fundraiser, the Frostbite Fish-Off. I thought it sounded fun and interesting, and I had some similar previous experience in cyberspace, and figured I'd try it out "in real life". By the end of the year, I also absorbed the positions of Secretary, and Communications/Web Guy.
Why did you become a member and what chapter are you involved with?
Curiosity, mostly. In January 2017, I joined both Trout Unlimited, and Fly Fishers International. A friend at one of my local fly shops suggested I check out TU, and see if it was something I'd be interested in. I was (and still am) pretty new to fly fishing, and it seemed like a great way to immerse myself in the community, and accelerate the learning process. Our chapter is the Southern Colorado Greenbacks, Chapter 509. We have members from Custer, Fremont, and Pueblo Counties.
What made you want to become involved with TU?
Again, curiosity, but I also have some legitimate concerns over the future of the Stream Protection Rule under the current administration, and where the planet in general is headed environmentally. I thought I'd see what TU was all about, and see what I could contribute to the organization.
What is your favorite activity or project that you have done with TU?
I'd have to say it was the Frostbite Fish-Off -- our chapter's annual fundraiser. This year we had fifteen teams of two anglers each competing for some great prizes, with a party and raffle afterward. All in all, we had about seventy people involved. I've signed on to be the chairman of the event for at least another year, but I'm also working on getting a Trout in the Classroom project going at my son's middle school for the 2018-2019 school year.
Our chapter also has a lot of cross-pollination with our local Fly Fishers International chapter (shout out to the Pueblo Tailwater Renegades!), and we've had river cleanups, and planted willows along the Arkansas River with Colorado Parks and Wildlife. The Renegades also host a Thursday evening "Bluegill Bash" at the ponds next to the Arkansas Tailwater, and that's been pretty fun, too.