2024 Executive Director News – Steve Harada

Hello fellow Walleyes Unlimited of Montana members and other folks that may be reading this. I was appointed as the Interim Executive Director of WUM at the last state meeting in February, so this is my first report. Yesterday was the first day of Spring and I’m sure that everyone is looking forward to open water, warmer weather and RAIN. I guarantee that I can tell you how to catch twice as many fish by reading this article. So, I’ll start out by giving you a little bit of information and background about me. I joined Walleyes Unlimited during its inception years and I’ve been a member since. At that time, it was a five dollar bill to become a member. I’ve seen the organization go through a lot of growth, occasional conflict and many accomplishes. Many instrumental members have gone on to the big fishing pond on the other side.

I live in Wolf Point and I’ve been married to Traci for 41 years. My background in Walleyes Unlimited includes Wolf Point Chapter President for several years, Co-Director Rock Creek Walleye Tournament for 20+ years, WUM State President 2003 -2004 and a Board Advisor for many years. I’ve worked with the FWP on different areas as a former Citizen’s Advisory Committee member, committee member of last Fort Peck Reservoir 10 year Management Plan, a Hunter’s Ed instructor and in other Fish and Wildlife working groups.

I started fishing walleyes at a very young age with my Dad, Ben and I’ve pretty much been chasing them ever since. Maybe a slight hiatus when I was more intrigued with muscle cars and chasing girls. At any rate, walleye fishing has been a passion for most of my life. I’ve taught Automotive Technology at Fort Peck Community College for the past 25 years and I’m “just a gear head”, as I like to tell my wife, Traci, when she suggests some carpentry or other skilled labor projects. I worked for the MSU Fire Services Training School for eleven years as a Regional Trainer. I spent twenty plus years as a volunteer firefighter with thirteen as Chief, for the Wolf Point VFD and many years as the Fire Warden for Roosevelt County. My educational background is in business with a Bachelor’s Degree from MSU Northern and a MBA from Gonzaga University. Go Zags!

I feel my passion for walleyes, work experience, leadership skills and education will help me to do a good job for the members and future of WUM. The recently retired Executive Director, Bob Gilbert, did a fantastic job for the organization for twenty years and I consider him a good friend and I’ve learned a lot from him over the years. I believe in working together, collaborating ideas or more simply, working as a team. Every member is important and good ideas should always be considered and looking for ways to make WUM stronger and more united. I like to paraphrase JFK’s famous words and encourage members to “ask not what Walleyes Unlimited of Montana can do for me, but what can I do for WUM”. What can members do? Recruit one member, if everyone recruits one member we’ll double our membership. Buy Walleyes Unlimited License Plates, as that helps WUM in a big financial way. Go to local meetings and help out with events. WUM has made an immeasurable impact in the improvement of warm water fishing in Montana over the years but we can do a lot more in the future, with your help.

Oh yeah, I said I’d guarantee you how to catch twice as many walleyes…OK here it is – go walleye fishing twice as much, BAM! Feel free to contact me with any questions, concerns or suggestions. I will return calls, texts or about any kind of electronic correspondence. I look forward to working together with WUM, the Montana FWP, our law makers and other organizations.

Take a kid fishing or someone that isn’t able to go on their own.


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