Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation supports LLGF

Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation supports LLGF

Fishing Gives Women a Greater Connection to their Families and the Outdoors

Press Release:

 DAVIE, FL—JANUARY 26, 2015—A New York “city kid”, Lizzette Romero recalls sunning on tar beaches on building rooftops and leaving fishing to the professionals for family meals.

“No we didn’t fish, ever,” recalled Romero, a Hollywood, Florida mom who works in Employee Benefits at a Broward County private school.

A few years back, while attending the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, Romero decided it was time to learn how to fish, as her family began spending weekends in the Florida Keys. She signed up for a workshop offered by “Ladies, Let’s Go Fishing” (LLGF), a non-profit created to introduce women to the sport.

The experience has blossomed into a true family affair.

“I fish with my girls and husband now,” she said. “We’re out on the boat, experiment with different lures and sometimes just snorkel together.”

Romero’s girls became so interested in marine wildlife and sportfishing they attend sea camp in The Keys and have become “marine biology fanatics.”

“Now everything is about ocean and the preservation of it,” she said. “We also do beach cleanups together.”

Another “Ladies, Let’s Go Fishing” alumni with multiple on-the-water educational sessions to her credit, is Brooklyn, New York native Debbie Keneipp.

Unlike Romero, Keneipp learned to fish on lakes in New Jersey with her Uncles and later with her ex-husband near the Verrazano Bridge, catching fluke and porgies. Fishing wasn’t a passion then but it is now.

Keneipp, who has been fishing with her husband for 15 years, admits she initially wasn’t committed to the sport.

“I would sunbathe and he would fish,” she said. “Since taking workshops and attending LLGF meetings, a whole new world of understanding and appreciation has opened and my husband has benefited from my confidence.”

In the past year, Keneipp and her husband, Craig, from Fort Lauderdale have fished at Crocodile Bay in Costa Rica, Key Largo and Flamingo in Everglades National Park.

“We are having a blast and at the same time we both have a better understanding of our environment,” she said.

The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation (GHOF), whose core mission is to fund marine science research, conservation and bolster educational programs for children and young adults, awarded the LLGF a grant for 2015 to provide more family-oriented learning opportunities for women members that will include men and children.

“Marine science is our paramount mission, but we know we need to reach children and teens and their parents with our ocean conservation message, too,” said Steve Stock, president of the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation. “Organizations like LLGF are especially important because they bring women into the sport of fishing and in turn those women encourage the entire family to participate and learn about our vital marine environments.”

According to LLGF founder Betty Bauman: “while the focus remains on women, we are opening several events in 2015 to families so they can share fishing together.”

For Keneipp, conservation is a key lesson learned in the LLGF University sessions she has attended.

“A perfect example presented itself while we were in Costa Rica recently, “ she recalled. “My husband chartered a boat (and Captain) to take me to catch a Pacific Sailfish. As we are heading out in the distance we see some gallon jugs floating around something. As we get closer and to our horror, there a large sea turtle wrapped up to a long liners line and makeshift floats. They were tightly wrapped around its neck. It took my husband, the captain and his mate to free and ultimately save this lovely creature’s life. That moment felt so amazing to all of us. Never caught that sailfish but that is fishing.”

Founded in 1997 by Bauman, LLGF has over 8,000 graduates and is the largest organization in the world whose objective is to introduce women to fishing. The latest Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation data indicates that women represent more than 47% of those interested in fishing.

Part of the GHOF grant will be used to help kick-off LLGF’s 2015 schedule, which begins with the return to the Fort Myers, Florida area on March 14-15 at Matlacha Community Park. The “No-Yelling School of Fishing “ program series also includes events on April 17-19 in South Florida at the I.T. Parker Community Center in Dania Beach, May 29-31 in the Florida Treasure Coast at the Corinthian Yacht Club in Stuart and in the Florida Keys on November 13-15 in Tavernier.

Bauman said typical events include instruction, use of equipment, hands-on training, networking parties, meals at certain venues, and more. Charter fishing is additional. In the works are expansion of local chapters and international fishing adventures. Some events offer social fishing memberships

About “Ladies, Let’s Go Fishing!”

Endorsed by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, “Ladies, Let’s Go Fishing! ®” (LLGF) is a national organization dedicated to attracting more women to sport fishing and to promoting conservation and responsible angling. LLGF promotes networking among women anglers and emphasizes mentorship between novice and experienced members. Founded in 1997 by Betty Bauman, of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, LLGF has over 8,000 graduates and is the largest organization in the world whose objective is to introduce women to fishing. Both Bauman and the University series – often dubbed “The No-Yelling School of Fishing” – are renowned nationally in the sport fishing and marine industries. The organization has earned rave reviews from national media including “Inside Edition,” CBS’ “The Early Show,” NBC’s “Nightly News,” “Good Morning America,” “Outdoor Life Network,” USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, Southern Living and more.

For more information please visit www.ladiesletsgofishing.com.

About Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation:

The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation is a leader in international efforts to protect our oceans and marine environments. The GHOF advocates for sustainable fishing practices, funds inspired scientific research and supports innovative educational programs to encourage conservation and best management practices. The GHOF funds the Guy Harvey Research Institute at Nova Southeastern University. GHOF grants to U.S. and non-U.S. research entities are used to fund important, new scientific discoveries on everything from migratory and reproductive patterns of various pelagic species to breakthroughs in DNA analysis.

For more information please visit www.guyharvey.com.

Photo Cutlines:

Photo A: Debbie Keneipp and husband on Costa Rica fishing trip.

Photo Courtesy of Debbie Keneipp

Photo B: Lizzette Romero and husband Anthony on fishing trip.

Photo Courtesy of Lizzette Romero

Photo C: Debbie Keneipp with dolphin fish aboard Sea Horse Charters.

Photo Courtesy of Debbie Keneipp

Photo B Lizzette Romero and husband Anthony_resize PHOTA A Debbie Keneipp and Husband Coasta Rica_resize Lizzettes children and fish_resize PHOTO C Debbie Keneipp sea horse dolphin_resize