Ark. Bowhunters Hall of Fame inducts new members
Bill Clements, Tom White and the late George Purvis were inducted into the Arkansas Bowhunters Hall of Fame at the organization’s banquet in Conway March 21. The Arkansas Bowhunters Association is one of the oldest conservation organizations in the state and is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.
The association’s hall of fame was organized in 2000 with the induction of Ben Pearson of Pine Bluff, Webster Meggs of El Dorado, Jack Witt of Little Rock and Roger Maynard of Conway. Subsequent inductees have included Keith de Noble of Little Rock and Dr. Dave Bosma of DeWitt in 2001, and Dr. Shelby Woodiel of DeWitt in 2007.
Clements, of Little Rock, has been involved with the ABA literally since the beginning of the organization, helping organize it in 1959 and serving in several capacities, including president in 1963. He was also the ABA’s first honorary life member.
White, of Monticello, was elected to the ABA board in 1993 as a field governor. He is the association’s longest-serving president, having held the office for eight years, and is currently serving as its legislative chairman. White helped draft and implement Arkansas’ Urban Bowhunting Program, working with the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. The partnership program is used by cities with urban deer problems to control deer populations. White also serves as Arkansas’s state coordinator for International Bowhunter Education and serves as a Master Instructor for that program. In conjunction with his ABA duties, he serves as vice president of Arkansas Hunters Feeding the Hungry, a statewide venison feeding organization. This organization takes donated venison, pays for the processing and distributes the meat to food pantries and feeding agencies in the state. In 2008-09, AHFH fed nearly 40,000 pounds of venison to hungry Arkansans.
Purvis, of Little Rock, was a well-known outdoor writer, hunter, wildlife biologist, photographer, TV host, and member of the Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame (1994). He began working for the AGFC in 1951 and was the chief of the information and education division. Purvis was also involved in the formation of the ABA and designed the first ABA patch. He was instrumental in promoting more opportunities for the bowhunters of Arkansas. He was awarded an honorary life membership into the ABA in 1882.