Author: Cassie Scott
Five of the Archery Trade Association’s 19 full-time employees form its outreach and education team, whose mission is to make archery and bowhunting relevant and accessible nationwide. They work with industry partners to create and share tools, resources and services for ATA members to recruit and engage as many participants as possible.
Leading this team is Jennifer Mazur, ATA’s senior director of outreach and education. “Every one of us on the ATA outreach team – in some way, shape or form – is growing archery participation,” Mazur said. “That’s our overarching effort. We do all we can to help our members succeed.”
Let’s meet Mazur and her team.
Mazur is ready to answer any questions at the Trade Show. Photo Credit: ATA
Jennifer Mazur, Senior Director of Outreach and Education
Mazur leads her team in developing strategies to increase participation in recreational and competitive archery, as well as bowhunting and bowfishing. She manages contracts, partnerships and budgeting in archery’s ever-changing market, and works with her team to create innovative ways to attract newcomers.
“I help our team recognize and adapt to societal changes that involve archery and bowhunting,” Mazur said. “We work to keep archery and bowhunting purposeful and meaningful in our society and culture.”
Kurt Smith, Director of Industry Relations
Smith provides ATA members educational resources, and helps build peer connections so they can share ideas, ask questions and get business advice. He hosts and produces ATA’s podcast, Beyond the Bow; writes business-related articles for industry magazines and publications; manages ATA Connect, an online discussion community for ATA members; and works with members individually to find ways to improve their business. He also helps ATA members create business plans, and address issues such as minimized advertised price policies. Further, Smith manages the ATA Retail Council,which gives a voice to fellow retailers on the ATA Board of Directors.
“Our team finds ways to bridge the gap and overcome obstacles that might prevent participation,” Smith said. “My goal is to help our industry better serve current and potential customers that we create through our programs and partnerships. We also know every business is unique, and operates in a way that stays true to its values.”
Gold gives instruction at an Explore Bowhunting/Explore Bowfishing Conference. Photo Credit: ATA
Josh Gold, Senior Manager of R3 and State Relations
Gold works with state fish and wildlife agencies, nongovernmental organizations and other groups on R3 efforts, which “recruit, retain and reactivate” hunters nationwide. He ensures these groups use federal excise tax dollars to attract and engage newcomers.
Gold also manages the Deer Protection Program, which helps protect wild deer by requiring ATA-member scent manufacturers to follow protocols that strive to reduce the spread of chronic wasting disease. He’s also creating a mentorship guide for ATA partners and members to help train new bowhunters.
“By building mutually beneficial partnerships with multiple groups and organizations, the ATA gains resources and support for pushing our sports into the future,” Gold said. “Working together helps us find the best outcomes for industry members and the conservation community.”
Nicole Nash, Manager of Range and Retail Programs
Nash works with ATA-member retailers to develop recreational and next-step archery programs and opportunities in their communities. For example, Nash helps shops offer archery classes, corporate events, educational programs like Explore Bowhunting and Explore Bowfishing, and other experienced-based events. She provides tools to help retailers adapt their business models to become more prosperous. Nash is also developing range materials based on the ATA’s Archery Park Guide for retailers, state wildlife agencies, parks and recreation departments, and others.
“The outreach team provides many services to ATA members,” Nash said. “Our members must adapt to a changing market to succeed, although they might not know where to start. I help them think about new audiences for their business. Then we work together to tailor and implement programs that increase sales and participation.”
Seaton buddies up to Ranger Rick at the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge. Photo Credit: Samantha Seaton
Samantha Seaton, Outreach and Education Program Manager
Seaton handles several education efforts for the ATA. She manages Archery Academy,Explore Bowhunting and Explore Bowfishing workshops that provide information ATA members can use to recruit and retain archers and bowhunters. Seaton also helps state wildlife agencies customize Explore Bowhunting and Explore Bowfishing curriculums, which build newcomers’ confidence in shooting archery.
“Participation is declining,” Seaton said. “We must act quickly and methodically to reverse these trends. I give members, partners and others interested in sharing archery and bowhunting traditions the tools and knowledge to be successful when welcoming newcomers,” Seaton said.
As the ATA outreach team promotes awareness and education about archery, ATA members can help, too.
“All our members should know what we do and how to get involved,” Mazur said. “We want to help them become archery resources in their communities.”
Contact Jennifer Mazur if you have questions about her programs. Also, watch for Part 2 of this series, which discusses how ATA’s outreach team leverages partnerships to create more archers and bowhunters.