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This was announced as part of the CAG Plenary Meeting minutes back in 2016 and posted by Jerome on the Public Announcements. The 2016 Champion of the Queen was awarded to Jo Ann Roberts for her extraordinary decade of work with young carp anglers at the St Lawrence Junior Tournament. She is the first woman (and first of many we hope) to win our most prestigious CAG award. Here she is with president Bob Giordano.

Jo Ann Roberts.jpeg

Here is the Press Release:




            CANTON — For the first time in its 23-year history, the national Carp Anglers Group (CAG) has given its highest award to a woman: Jo Ann Roberts of the St. Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce.

            Roberts was selected for CAG’s 2016 “Champion of the Queen” honor because she has been a champion of the annual St. Lawrence International Junior Carp Tournament for nearly 10 years. Since joining the County Chamber in 2007 as its events coordinator, she has been the primary force behind the local carp tournament for boys and girls.

            “Jo Ann is very deserving of this award,” CAG President and local carp angler Bob Giordano said. “She has been dedicated to the Junior Carp Tournament, the biggest contest in the country for young carp anglers, and a great promoter of catch-and-release carp angling on the St. Lawrence River, one of North America’s premier carp fisheries.”

            Giordano said that the vote for this year’s Champion of Queen award was announced at CAG’s annual meeting, shortly before the Junior Carp Tournament in August. “We had multiple nominations” he said. “Jo Ann was the unanimous choice.”

            The award is named for the carp’s worldwide status as “queen of the river.” Roberts was surprised with the honor at the closing ceremonies for the 2016 Junior Carp Tournament.

            She planned those closing ceremonies, as she has done for several years now. From registering participants to lining up sponsors to ordering participant t-shirts, Roberts has been responsible for coordinating all aspects of the annual tournament. Local CAG members have been integral volunteers with the tournament, and in 2015 CAG officially partnered with the County Chamber to manage the event and promote it to their members and beyond.

            “It’s always been one of my favorite events,” Roberts said. “The tournament gets families and kids out from behind computers and into the great outdoors along the St. Lawrence. It’s wonderful to see kids forming friendships, and learning to appreciate the fish and the river.”

            The tournament is open to boys and girls ages 11 to 18, and Roberts has met and followed young anglers and their families over the years. “I’ve known many of them from the first year they fished until they ‘age out’ at 18,” she said. “It is so rewarding to see these kids grow up. I love it.”

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