“The status of “Honorary Member” may be conferred upon any person deemed to have made a major contribution in the field of fishing reel collecting or the history pertaining thereto. A candidate need not be a current member of ORCA. Candidates for Honorary Membership status may be nominated by any member of ORCA in good standing (except that the candidate may not nominate himself) by sending the nomination to the President of ORCA at any time. The nomination shall then be presented to the Board of Directors who shall approve or reject the nomination by a simple majority vote. Honorary Members shall become members for life and be excused from any requirement to pay dues. All other rights and responsibilities of membership shall be the same as for regular active member status, including those set forth in Article XIII of this Constitution and Bylaws. ”
ORCA Honorary Members Selected to Date
Jim Brown. Jim is a preeminent authority on the history of fly reels. He has written Fishing Reel Patents of the United States 1838-1940, published in 1987, and A Treasury of Reels, published by the American Museum of Fly Fishing in 1990, an illustrated catalog of the Museum’s reel collection. He also has written dozens of in-depth articles about reels for many prominent publications. Jim resides in Stamford, CT.
Edwin E. Corwin. Ed was a Charter Member of ORCA and served as President, Vice-President, Editor, and Director. He wrote the ORCA Constitution & By-Laws and contributed many articles on reels to various publications. Ed resided in E. Palatka, Florida, until his death in 2006.
John Elder. John was our President from 2011-2015. He is a regular contributor to the Club forum, Reel Talk, having posted hundreds of threads. His knowledge of reels and their history has been key to his contributions along with his skills in reel repair. A master machinist, John was a major contributor to the Restoration and Repair Manual. He has served as a valuable resource to member and nonmembers alike in their pursuit of reels and their preservation.
Michael Farrior. Michael has made contributions to our knowledge of fishing reels and their makers, with particular emphasis on West Coast fishing history. As the Historian for the Tuna Club at Avalon, Michael has published a detailed treatise on the origins of Big Game fishing and the evolution of fishing reels and other tackle that made such fishing possible. He has been named a National Treasure by the International Gamefish Association (IGFA), where he has served on the board and is recognized world-wide as an authority on Big Game fishing history. Michael has contributed article to the Reel News, liberally shares his knowledge with the membership, and has been a constant supporter of our organization.
Harvey Garrison. Harvey was best known for his enthusiastic service as the ORCA Librarian for many years. He was also highly respected for his encyclopedic knowledge of Shakespeare reels and his willingness to share his information with fellow collectors. Harvey lived in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida until his death in 2007.
Harold “Doc” Herr. Doc, a “collector’s collector,” served on the ORCA Board and contributed many articles to The Reel News. He was an authority on Hendryx and Winchester reels and was always willing to pass on his knowledge of a subject to anyone with a question. Doc passed away in 2001.
Vernon H. Kirby, Jr. Vern was a polymath of fishing history and tackle. His in-depth research over decades has provided many authors, collectors, and fishing museums with essential information that might have remained undiscovered if not for his efforts. Although he published only occasionally, Vern was the “unsung hero” behind dozens of books and articles penned by some of our most respected writers on angling. He died in 2015.
Todd E.A. Larson. Todd (or “Dr. Todd”, as collectors know him) has contributed to ORCA and the tackle community for two decades, having written several books, over 100 articles, and having published dozens of books on fishing and tackle history. A history professor by trade, he founded the Whitefish Press in 2006, created the Fishing for History: The History of Fishing and Fishing Tackle blog in 2007 and regularly writes articles for The Reel News.
Robert A. Miller. Bob has authored several books on Pflueger reels and was a major contributor to The Reel News with his “Pflueger Pfacts” column for 15 years. He is also a regular contributor to the popular Reel Talk web message board. His works include The History of the Pflueger Supreme Casting Reel, 1916-1982, The Reel and Reel-Related Patents of Enterprise manufacturing Company 1896-1940 and Willow Creek and Other Stories. Bob lives in Nashville, Tennessee.
Albert Munger. Al was one of the pioneers of reel collecting. He published Fishing and Collecting Old Reels & Tackle & History in 1980, the first book devoted entirely to collecting reels. Al followed this up with Those Old Fishing Reels and Old Fishing Tackle and Tales over the next few years. His enthusiasm has convinced many others, over the years, to become collectors. Al enjoyed fishing at his home in Fortescue, New Jersey after he retired. He passed away in May 2017. (Refer to Al’s Obituary in the July 2017 Reel News.)
Michael E. Nogay. Mike is the founder of the Old Reel Collectors Association, and he served as the original newsletter publisher, He incorporated the organization as a non-profit corporation in 1990 and served as Secretary-Treasurer until 1993. Mike has also contributed many articles to various publications. He lives in Weirton, West Virginia.
Ed Pritchard. Ed has collected and studied reels for decades. He has written 2 books on reels and anglers who have used them. His articles and other contributions have appeared in a variety of national periodicals and collector club journals. He has appeared on both national and foreign television shows to talk about fishing reel history. He has served for many years as both president and director of FATC. For a long time, Ed has worked as a consultant to the International Game Fish Association (IGFA). In that capacity, he has curated a couple of IGFA Museum shows on well-known fishermen and has been largely responsible for the selection, restoration, and description of tackle for the museum.
Roger Schulz. Roger began serving as the ORCA Secretary/Treasurer in 1997, and he remains in that position today. He brings his organizational skills to the position to keep the day-to-day functions of ORCA operating. Roger has been collecting fishing reels since the early 1990s, specializing in Meisselbach and Pflueger reels. A fishery biologist, Roger worked for over 40 years in the Fisheries program of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia.
Steven K. Vernon. Steve has published two reference books, Antique Fishing Reels and Fishing Reel Makers of Kentucky (coauthored with Frank M. Stewart III). He served as an ORCA Director for a decade and as Reel Editor of Fishing Collectibles Magazine. He has written dozens of articles on reel history for various publications, contributing regularly to The Reel News. He lives in Havertown, Pennsylvania
Phil White. Phil served as Editor of The Reel News from 1996 to 2005 and supervised its growth from a 16-page quarterly newsletter to a 36-page bimonthly magazine. He developed the first ORCA web site in 1997 and maintained it until 2002. Along the way Phil has written four definitive books, several booklets, and numerous articles on a wide variety of reels, the companies that made them, and reel collecting. Phil lives in Nampa, Idaho.
Ben Wright. Ben Wright published The Wright Price Guide for the Reel Man and Wright’s Spinning Reel Reference & Value Guide, a “bible” for spinning reel collectors. He wrote dozens of articles while helping collectors understand and appreciate this segment of reel collecting. Ben served as President and Vice-President of ORCA. He died in 2016.