Twelve people who have made a lasting and meaningful impact on the sport of bass fishing have reached the doorstep of enshrinement into the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame with the announcement Thursday of the ballot for the Hall’s Class of 2024.
Comprising the list of candidates are a mix of dynamic personalities, on-the-water competitors, off-the-water innovators, and trailblazers.
This is the first time the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame has made public the list of finalists for induction.
“From meetings and having conversations with key staff at the baseball, hockey and NASCAR halls of fame this past year, the main idea that came out of it all was to formally announce those individuals who are up for induction, as those three organizations do each year,” said BFHOF President John Mazurkiewicz. “While the final decision is now up to the Selection Panel, which possesses vast knowledge and awareness about the bass fishing industry and its history, as well as the living members of the Hall, it was a much-needed step by our Board to keep the induction process as transparent as possible.”
The 2024 ballot consists of (in alphabetical order):
- Fred Arbogast (Akron, Ohio)
- Don Iovino (Burbank, Calif.)
- Mike McKinnis (Little Rock, Ark.)
- Andy Morgan (Dayton, Tenn.)
- Takahiro Omori (Emory, Texas)
- Skeet Reese (Auburn, Calif.)
- Lynn Reeves (Springfield, Mo.)
- Bill Taylor (Danville, Ky.)
- Clark Wendlandt (Leander, Texas)
- Mike Whitaker (Tuscaloosa, Ala.)
- Alfred Williams (Jackson, Miss.)
- Mark Zona (Sturgis, Mich.)
The slate of nominees will be considered and voted on by the 30-member Hall of Fame Selection Panel and the 47 living members of the Hall. Each voter will choose five names and rank them in order of preference with the top choice receiving five (5) points, second receiving four (4) points, and so on. Voting will conclude on February 9th.
The Hall of Fame’s Board of Directors will announce the Class of 2024 next month. The Hall of Fame will hold its annual induction ceremony on September. 26, 2024, at Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium in Springfield, Mo.
The 11-member Nominations Committee, comprised of members of the Hall’s Board of Directors, selected the names for this year’s ballot after reviewing newly submitted nominations as well as candidates who were previously on the Hall’s master list of nominees. Names that appear on the master list for five years without being placed on the final ballot are automatically removed but can be subsequently re-nominated.
“We’re very pleased with the ballot we presented to the Selection Panel for Hall of Fame consideration,” said Neil Paul, who chairs the Board’s nominations committee. “Our committee spent hours reviewing and discussing the nominees from our master list. Our goal is to maintain the integrity of the Hall of Fame by putting our best foot forward in this process of assembling a ballot of individuals that will contribute to the legacy of the Hall of Fame.”