Backcountry Hunters & Anglers to Honor Bozeman Resident

Monday Apr. 6th, 2015

Bozeman resident Joe Gutkowski has been selected as the recipient of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers’ prestigious Aldo Leopold Award, which will be presented on Thursday, April 9, during a ceremony in downtown Bozeman.
The Aldo Leopold Award is bestowed annually to an individual who demonstrates exceptional work and dedication to conservation and backcountry values, especially the conservation of wildlife habitat. An early day smokejumper, Gutkowski spent a career with the Forest Service while serving as the backbone of multiple conservation organizations and numerous campaigns.
Gutkowski, a longtime BHA member, embodies the values of backcountry conservation and the spirit of Leopold, said BHA Executive Director Land Tawney.
“Field & Stream magazine once called Gutkowski ‘the toughest man in the West,’” said Tawney. “He has been known to stick a peanut butter sandwich in his pocket and keep on a big bull elk until he has it down, regardless of where the elk takes him. And he has inspired generations of us who grew up in the outdoors and feel the responsibility of being good stewards.”
Gutkowski and the other recipients of BHA’s top honors were announced at the BHA annual rendezvous, which took place last month in Spokane, Washington. Founded in 2004 around an Oregon campfire, BHA is a membership-based organization that seeks to ensure North America’s outdoor heritage of hunting and fishing in a natural setting.
“Joe epitomizes the true backcountry hunter,” said Greg Munther, co-chair of BHA’s Montana chapter. “He is well known as an extremely self-sufficient outdoorsman in the backcountry. Most importantly, he has dedicated much of his life to protecting what he loves by leading lasting conservation efforts for wildlife, wild lands and waters in Montana.”

When: Thursday, April 9, at 6 p.m.
Where: 406 Brewing Company, 101 E. Oak St., #D, Bozeman, MT 59715
RSVP to Katie McKalip at 406-240-9262 or
Backcountry Hunters & Anglers is the sportsmen’s voice for our wild public lands, waters and wildlife.