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Rob Potter | Democrat

Harold Buley, right, accepts his 2010 Sportsman of the Year plaque from Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs of Sullivan County President Jack Danchak at Saturday night’s banquet at the Rockland House.

Harold Buley is named the 2010 Sportsman of the Year

By Rob Potter
ROSCOE — October 8, 2010 — Dozens of sportsmen and women made their way to the Rockland House in Roscoe on Saturday night as the Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs of Sullivan County held its 37th annual Dinner Banquet.
The Federation honored several people and named Harold Buley of Grahamsville its 2010 Sportsman of the Year.
The evening began with Bill Smith of the Ulster County Sportsmen’s Federation leading everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Sullivan County Sportsmen’s Federation President Jack Danchak then asked everyone to please remain standing for a moment of silence for departed Federation members Clarence Loucks and Norm Weiss.
Following the moment of silence, Danchak spoke of the contributions Loucks and Weiss made to the Federation. He noted that Clarence Loucks and his wife Katie, who was in attendance and to whom he offered condolences on behalf of all the Federation members, sold more Federation raffle tickets than anyone and they did so year after year.
“This Federation is certainly going to miss Clarence Loucks,” Danchak said.
Danchak noted that for many years Norm Weiss and his wife Barbara helped as chefs at the Federation’s annual Wild Game Dinner. Danchak also offered condolences on behalf of all the Federation members to Barbara Weiss and her family.
“Norm’s dedication to this Federation will definitely be missed,” Danchak said.
Danchak then recognized several honored guests, including members of the Sullivan County Legislature and other county officials, town supervisors, Department of Environmental Conservation law enforcement officers and wildlife specialists, Ulster County Federation officials and members, officials and friends of the Sullivan County Federation.
Danchak noted that the Sullivan County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs is the largest Federation in New York State. The Sullivan County Federation currently has 107 member clubs and represents thousands of sportsmen.
He explained that one of the main reasons the Federation holds the annual banquet “is to thank everyone who contributed and helped in any way to make this a successful year for our Sportsmen’s Federation.”
Danchak presented President’s Awards to people “who have gone out of their way for this Federation.”
The first President’s Award was presented to New York State Senator John Bonacic.
“He has always been there for us and has never turned his back to this Federation,” Danchak said of Bonacic. “Recently he has helped secure an Environmental Grant for $5,000 for our Federation.”
As he received his award, Bonacic praised the Federation members.
“I thank you, Jack, and all of the Federation members for this honor,” Bonacic said. “It’s wonderful what you do to teach our children to hunt and fish and care for the environment.”
Danchak announced that the next award was for New York State Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther, who unfortunately could not attend the banquet due to other commitments.
Danchak said Gunther “is another true friend to this Federation and sportsmen all over the state.
“She has also fought for our concerns numerous times,” he added.
Danchak also presented Presidents Awards to:
Joe Kaiser, who is a member of the Excelsior Hunting & Fishing Club of Eldred and is the Federation’s Small Game Chairman.
Edna Calkin, who is the Federation’s Secretary and is known as the “Coyote Lady” for registering 1,066 hunters in the Federation’s last Coyote Contest. Calkin also received a genuine coyote custom-made vest.
Pat Voges, a member of the Red Fox Hunting Club who has been a Hunter Safety Course instructor for more than 20 years.
Kay Danchak, who helps out at all of the Federation’s functions. Kay is also Jack’s wife and the “First Lady of the Federation.”
Kay Danchak also presented Certificates of Appreciation to Harold Buley, Herb DeWitt and Hank Samyn for their carpentry and electrical skills in repairing a Federation building.
Jack Danchak then invited all of the Federation’s Sportsman of the Year winners in attendance to join him at the podium as he announced this year’s Sportsman of the Year. He noted that the award is only given once to an individual and the recipient is selected by all past Sportsmen of the Year who are still Federation members.
Before introducing Harold Buley as the 2010 Sportsman of the Year, Jack Danchak told the roomful of people about Buley. Jack Danchak noted that Buley came from a large family of 10 brothers and sisters, all of whom enjoyed fishing and hunting with their parents. Buley has hunted for many different species of game. In 1978, he shot a large black bear on Balsam Cap and nine men spent all day bringing the bear down the mountain.
Buley, who likes to fish for shad on the Delaware River and salmon on Lake Ontario, is a long time member of the Federation. He is also currently serves as the Treasurer of both the Grahamsville Rod & Gun Club and the Beaver Dam Club.
“Through the years, he has donated countless numbers of knives to different Federation functions,” Jack Danchak said. “When we ask for volunteers for anything, you know his hand is always up. He is truly a dedicated sportsman and a member that this Federation is very proud of and fortunate to have. Ladies, gentlemen and fellow sportsmen, it is an honor and with great pleasure to present to you our 2010 Sportsman of the Year, Harold Buley.”
As he made his way to the podium, Buley received congratulations from all of the past Sportsmen of the Year in attendance. Sullivan County Legislature Vice Chairman Elwin “Woody” Wood then congratulated Buley on behalf of the entire Legislature.
A very humble Buley accepted his plaque from Jack Danchak.
“I would like to thank all of the Federation members for this honor,” Buley said. “I think there are some members who deserve to receive this award a second, third or fourth time. And there are a lot of members who deserve to receive it for the first time.
“It was a complete surprise,” he continued. “All of you did a great job keeping this a secret. I really appreciate this. Thank you.”

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