Making the Rules

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Published on: Oct. 2, 2007

Last revision: Dec. 3, 2010

big fish without harming them. His biggest muskie, caught when he lived in Pennsylvania, was 54 inches long and weighed 52 pounds. He had that one mounted.

He also loves archery, both target archery and bowhunting. “I have yet to introduce anybody to archery who once they tried it didn’t go, ‘Oh, that’s fun!’” Johnson said.

Archery is easy, he said, but shooting well requires developing the kind of discipline that inevitably brings success to other parts of life. To introduce kids to the benefits of archery, Johnson has helped introduce the National Archery in the Schools Program to Missouri schools.

Johnson, who stepped down from his position as president of the Conservation Federation of Missouri when he was named a conservation commissioner, said Missouri is fortunate in having a conservation commission that takes into account the views of sportspeople and their organizations.

“The thing I like most about it,” he said, “is that we’re willing to listen to all sides on the issues, and we’re willing to change where it’s warranted.”

William F. “Chip” McGeehan

“No place called home,” is how Commissioner William F. “Chip” McGeehan of Marshfield describes his roots. “My dad was in the Air Force,” he said, “and I attended 13 different schools—four different high schools.” He graduated from Jefferson City High School in 1968.

McGeehan’s dad started taking him hunting and fishing when he was 5- or 6-years-old. “I not only enjoyed hunting and fishing, but I also enjoyed the days with my father,” he said.

McGeehan went on to obtain a degree in fisheries and wildlife management from Southwest Missouri State University. During his college years, he worked summers as a fisheries assistant with the Conservation Department.

Now a businessman and a rancher (150 head of bison), he continues to enjoy the outdoors. His favorite fish is a catfish, his favorite game animal is a deer, and his favorite outdoor activity is bowhunting for turkeys or deer.

As a conservation commissioner, McGeehan said he tries to blend the recommendations of biologists regarding our resources with the human element, the needs of the people of Missouri. To assist him in his decision-making, he said “I take every opportunity to get out in the community to listen to the comments and opinions and suggestions from the ultimate users, the consumptive users of conservation.”

Lowell Mohler

You may have bought sweet corn or asparagus grown by Conservation Commissioner Lowell Mohler. He and his wife farm 200 acres near Jefferson

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