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CCA Louisiana Inducts Three into Hall of Fame

Conservation Group also names Conservationist of the Year and Volunteer of the Year

Sen. Gerald Long, Bill Bass, Bob Bush, Ted Beaullieu, Sr., Joey Russo

 

The Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana inducted three new members into its Hall of Fame at the group’s State Convention held in Lafayette last weekend. In addition, CCA Louisiana recognized two members as Conservationist of the Year and Volunteer of the Year.

Named to the CCA Louisiana Hall of Fame were Ted Beaullieu, Sr. of Lafayette, William “Bill” Bass of Lafayette and Bob Bush of Lake Charles.

Ted Beaullieu grew up fishing the waters around Cypremort Point with homemade cane poles and a wooden skiff that he and his father propelled by paddle. Beaullieu has been active in CCA Louisiana for close to a quarter of a century and helped establish the CCA Acadiana Chapter. He has long served on the CCA Louisiana Board of Directors and was appointed by former Governor Mike Foster to the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Coastal Restoration and Conservation. In addition, Mr. Beaullieu and his family made a generous financial contribution to the CCA Louisiana Foundation to fund a scholarship program that annually awards $5,000 to a deserving ULL student pursuing a graduate degree in either marine fisheries science or coastal restoration studies.

Bill Bass practices law in Lafayette with the firm of Voorhies and Labbe. The former LSU football player was instrumental in founding the CCA Acadiana Chapter.  Bass has provided countless hours of legal advice to CCA Louisiana over the years and has readily testified on behalf of CCA Louisiana before state legislative committees, the U.S. Corp of Engineers and the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission. Bass has served as Acadiana Chapter President, CCA Louisiana State President and on CCA’s National Board.  He also served for many years as CCA Louisiana’s Habitat Chairman where he played a major role in building the organization’s prolific reef program.

Bob Bush is a founding member of CCA Louisiana and has served as State President, Management Committee member and Chairman, head of the Compensation Committee and on the CCA National Board of Directors.  A pioneer in coastal restoration and habitat development, Bob Bush is a motivational leader that has been instrumental to the growth and stability of CCA Louisiana.  Bob has led the effort to sell conservation not only to anglers across Louisiana, but to decision makers and policy leaders as well.

“Ted Beaullieu, Bill Bass and Bob Bush laid the foundation that enables CCA Louisiana to fulfill our goals of conservation, coastal restoration and common sense fishing regulations,” said CCA Louisiana President Charlie Caplinger. “Without their selfless contributions, we would have been unable to accomplish many of our successes over the years.  They are all very deserving of their induction into the CCA Louisiana Hall of Fame.”

The CCA Louisiana 2013 Jerry Stone Conservationist of the Year Award was given to State Senator Gerald Long (R-Natchitoches).  As Chairman of the Louisiana Senate Natural Resources Committee, Senator Long has been a strong voice for conservation.  An avid outdoorsman, Senator Long also recognizes the importance of the recreational fishing industry to Louisiana and its economy.

“Sportsmen and women throughout Louisiana should be thankful to have Senator Gerald Long as Chairman of the Senate Natural Resources Committee,” continued Caplinger. “Senator Long is a true outdoorsman who understands our issues and is receptive to our concerns.”

The Albert Bankston Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to CCA Vermilion Chapter President Joey Russo.  In his role as Vermilion Chapter President, he has led the chapter to become one of CCA Louisiana’s strongest.  As a member of the State Habitat Committee, Russo was a driving force behind one of CCA Louisiana’s first ever reef building projects (Redfish Point Reef in Vermilion Bay) and has been active in the planning of CCA’s next reef, to be built near Cypremort Point. He was a host and captain at the 2012 Legislators' Rodeo and helped organize the first ever Specs and Spots Tournament at Cypremort Point. The Albert Bankston Volunteer of the Year Award is the highest honor given by CCA Louisiana each year to a volunteer member.

“CCA is a volunteer driven organization and Joey Russo epitomizes that reality with his tireless devotion to our mission,” said CCA Louisiana Executive Director David Cresson.  “Joey is always the first person to accept a new challenge and he has a track record of seeing his projects through to completion. He is an inspiration to emerging CCA leaders across the state, and has set an example with his vision and dedication.”