At the Bonnier Outdoor Group breakfast yesterday morning, SHOT Business honored eight industry leaders. The honorees were Bass Pro Shops, Chain Retailer of the Year; SportsSouth, Distributor of the Year; CorBon/Glaser, Company of The Year; Game Masters of Quincy, Illinois, Independent Retailer of the Year; Colonial Shooting Academy, Richmond, Virginia, Range of the Year; Randell Pence of Sturm, Ruger, Sales Representative of the Year; and Mark Malkowski, president of Stag Arms, Person of the Year. In addition, the Bonnier Outdoor Group Special Achievement Award was given the NSSF president Steve Sanetti.
“The SHOT Business awards recognize and acknowledge leadership in the shooting sports industry. Simply put, the winners of these awards represent the best in this business,” said Slaton L. White, editor of SHOT Business.
Bass Pro Shops owner John Morris accepted the Chain Retailer of the Year Award and shared heartfelt thanks with the audience for recognition of the company’s many efforts to promote safe and responsible hunting and shooting.
“Thank you for everything you do to stand up and preserve and promote the future of the shooting sports and the outdoors. Our company is a lot more than just retail, and that comes from loving to hunt and fish and having a passion for the outdoors,” Morris said. Mark Malkowski, president of Stag Arms, was awarded the Person of the Year award for vigorously defending the firearms and shooting industry in the wake of the tragic school shooting in Connecticut last year, but he gave most of the credit to the NSSF.
“I wouldn’t have received this award if it hadn’t been for the NSSF. Those guys deserved to be up there with me,” Malkowski said. “They were the ones that supported me tirelessly throughout the whole experience.”
NSSF got special recognition of its own when White presented Sanetti, with the Bonnier Outdoor Group Special Achievement Award
“All I did this year was to tell the truth about this great industry, and you all make that easy to do,” Sanetti said. “There are so many people in the industry that have done so much this year or have been under fire successfully. I’m just so proud and honored to be in the forefront, helping tell the story about the industry and get the word out that we’re a great bunch of people and we do great things and we’re not going to be knocked down by lies and misrepresentations about who we are. We represent a great bunch of Americans doing constitutionally protected things in a responsible way. And we’re going to keep on doing that.”