Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame to recognize new members in August 

LITTLE ROCK – The Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation (AGFF) today announced its 2024 Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame inductees and the recipients of its Legacy Award and the Steve Smith Spirit of Giving Award. Honorees will be officially recognized during the Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame Banquet, slated for Saturday, August 26, 2023, at the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock.

“For more than 100 years, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission has worked to conserve the state’s wildlife resources, thanks to people such as our 2024 slate of inductees and award winners,” said Deke Whitbeck, president of the Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation. “We are delighted to be able to celebrate these success stories and proud to honor the outstanding individuals behind them.”


Shawn Daniel, Colonel, U.S. Army (Retired) – Executive Director of Darby’s Warrior Support, Daniel has provided a lifeline for countless post-9/11 Special Operations combat veterans dealing with the physical and emotional aftermath of their service to the nation. DWS provides all-inclusive Arkansas hunting and fishing opportunities in a safe environment fulfilling its mission of giving back to these heroes by providing them a place to heal with camaraderie and understanding.

Dr. Steve Lochmann – As a Professor of Fisheries Management and Ecology at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff for 30 years, Dr. Lochman’s teaching and research efforts have produced many Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Fisheries Division biologists as well as AGFC Chief of Staff Chris Racey and Deputy Director Ben Batten. In 2016, Dr. Lochman was recognized by the Arkansas Chapter of the American Fisheries Society with the Joe Hogan Award for outstanding leadership and strong commitment to Arkansas’ fisheries and aquatic resources.

Steve Smith Spirit of Giving Award

The Mayfly Project – Founded in 2015 by Jess and Laura, the mission of The Mayfly Project is to support children in foster care through fly-fishing, providing mentorship, introducing them to their local water ecosystems, and developing a rewarding lifelong hobby. Now active in multiple states, The Mayfly Project helps foster children have fun, feel supported and develop a meaningful connection with the outdoors.  

The Legacy Award

Andy Simmons (Posthumous) – Lifelong outdoor enthusiast Andy Simmons made history when he named the Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation in his estate, resulting in one of the largest single gifts ever received by AGFF. As a lasting tribute, the Foundation turned the gifted property into the Andy Simmons Outdoor Skills Farm, opened in October 2023, as a way of perpetuating Andy’s legacy of conservation and outdoor recreation to future generations of Arkansans. 

Tickets for the 2024 Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame Banquet are $150 with tables of 10 available for $1,500 each. The night will include dinner, raffles, a silent auction and the induction ceremony. Doors open at 6 p.m. for reception and silent auction; dinner will begin at 7 p.m.

Proceeds from the event support the year-round work of the Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit organization that serves as the fundraising adjunct to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, helping introduce hundreds to the joy of the outdoors every year. Established in 1982, AGFF’s mission supports AGFC initiatives, particularly those engaging children and youth in the outdoors and outdoor activities. 

To purchase tickets to the event, visit the Foundation website ( or by simply texting “FISH” to 243.725. For more information, contact the Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation office at 501.223.6468 or email [email protected].