Austin Stankowski - Pro Staffer
Austin Stankowski is a 12 year old sixth grader in Stevens Point Wisconsin. He has been taggin along with his father Scott in the outdoors since before he could walk. A successful hunter, Austin has already harvested a black bear, several deer, a Russian boar and over a dozen turkeys. His favorite pursuits include spring turkey hunting in Nebraska. In 2012 he harvested two toms and a beared hen in one day of hunting. He also enjoys bow hunting for whitetail deer any time of the year.
Austin is an active committee member of the National Wild Turkey Federation. Locally he has helped raise funds at banquets and has spearheaded the chapters annual Turkey hunters care program where last year he raised over $500 through the chapter and his school where is also a student council member. Austin is a two time state Jakes calling champion and this past spring he won the extreme Jakes competition as well the Hunters division.
Luke Clayton - Pro Staffer
Outdoors writer/radio host/book author Luke Clayton has been addicted to everything outdoors related since his childhood when he grew up hunting and fishing in rural northeast Texas. Luke pens a weekly newspaper column that appears in over fifty newspapers. Luke recently assumed duties as Editor at Large for East Texas Outdoors Magazine and freelances for several other outdoor magazines. Everything from bowhunting for deer, to drift fishing for catfish, to gigging bull frogs perks his interest. Luke is on the pro staff of Mathews Bows, Inverter Broadheads, Tree Talon and Carbon Express Arrows. Follow his columns and listen to his weekly radio show throughout the year and you’ll surely get exposed to many facets of the outdoor life.
Kevin Knighton - Pro Staffer
Kevin was raised in the small north Florida town of Branford, near the Suwannee River. Thanks to his dad, he learned at an early age the joys of hunting and fishing and spending as much time as possible with a shotgun or a fishing pole in hand. After earning a degree in Video Production from The Art Institute of Ft. Lauderdale, Kevin gained commercial production, advertising, and live television experience at a Gainesville, FL TV station. It was that experience that led him to meet Michael Lee and Trey Wetherington to form the founding team of Southern Backwoods Adventures® which is now The Backwoods Life™.
"I think its every young hunters dream to see themselves on an outdoor television show. Growing up I would have never dreamed of having the opportunities that we have every single year through our show. It is truly a humbling experience and a great honor to present our show to the viewers that we reach every week." - Kevin Knighton - More on The Backwoods Life™!
Michael Lee - Pro Staffer
Michael grew up on the banks of the Flint River and Lake Blackshear in South Georgia. He started hunting and fishing at a young age and fell in love with the outdoors thanks to his father and family. Michael is cofounder of Southern Backwoods, LLC and working with Kevin and Trey, Southern Backwoods Adventures® TV was born and evolved into The Backwoods Life™. Hunting all over the country has broadened Michael’s hunting abilities and he looks forward to new challenges each year. A graduate from Valdosta State University with a degree in Computer Information Systems, Michael is no stranger to hard work and dedication to getting the job done.
“I’ve been blessed to be able to reach out and touch my dreams. It is truly an honor to be able to reach so many people with the show and to know that we have allowed them to enjoy the outdoors with us through television.” - Michael Lee - More on The Backwoods Life™!
Woody Sullivan -Pro Staffer
Woody grew up in eastern North Carolina on Topsail Island. He started offshore fishing and diving as a young adult. Where he fell in love with the outdoors. Woody's passion for hunting big game led him to Pike County, IL. This is where he met Michael and Kevin. Woody became part of the Backwoods Life family shortly thereafter as a Bonehead Team member. Now, Woody has become one of the Hosts of the TV show.
"I have been blessed to be part of such a great show and to be able to touch be touched by so many people in the hunting community. I enjoy sharing my hunting experiences though our television show."- Woody - More on The Backwoods Life™!
Bob Hood - Pro Staffer
Former outdoor editor for Fort Worth Star-Telegram (1968-2008). Currently Hunting Editor for Texas Fish and Game Magazine and contributing writer for Texas Sportsman Magazine, Texas Sporting Journal, Texas Parks and Wildlife Outdoor Annual, Lone Star Outdoor News and others. Past president of Texas Outdoor Writers Association. Has hunted numerous times in 10 western, central and southern U.S. states as well as Mexico and Canada for elk, mule deer, whitetail deer, turkey, waterfowl, pheasants and many other game and non-game species.
Sean Callanan - Pro Staffer
Sean Callanan’s unwavering commitment to winning is about integrity. A personal matter between himself and his values, he competes against his potential in each course, not his competitors. Winning matters to him because it is excellence in action, the objective measurement of his ideas, strategies, and hard work. It is the active partnership of physical and mental strength trained, aimed, and executed toward a specific, quantifiable goal. His physical strength puts him in play at the highest level of performance worldwide; mental strength keeps him there.
Electing to exclusively hunt and shoot a traditional recurve, Sean emerged as the 2009 IBO Traditional World Champion (HHW) and the decisive winner of the IBO Bowhunter's Challenge (HHW). Sean has a tradition of achieving champion status on the state, regional, and international stage. He is the 2010 IBO Northeast Indoor Champion, 2009 IBO Northeast Outdoor Champion, and holds numerous state titles including two New Hampshire Triple Crowns. More info on Sean Callanan
Pro Staffer - Larry Large
Larry grew up in the Pacific Northwest on a cattle ranch, spending his formative years in the outdoors, hunting and fishing. He hung up his rifle about 30 years ago and became a rabid bowhuter. For the past 15 years, Larrry has guided elk hunters in New Mexico and Colorado and is currently in the process of beginning his own elk outfitting business.In the off season, Larry spends a lot of time hunting exotics and hogs in Texas, where he guides for black bass at Lake Fork during the spring and summer months.
Larry and Luke Clayton are partners in L & L Outfitters, an archery elk hunting outfitting operations in Steam Boat Springs, Co.
Bro. Terry Terry - Pro Staffer
Chances are pretty good you’ve seen Brother Terry Terry creatorsguideservice.com on a segment of Buck Ventures Outdoors on the Sportsmen Channel arrowing his huge Nebraska whitetail buck taken with Elk Ridge Outfitters. Terry has had a lifelong passion for hunting and fishing and currenty stays busy during the fall and winter with his pro staff affiliation with Buck Ventures Outdoors, a top rated outdoor show with the Sportsmen Channel. Bro. Terry has this to say about GhostBlind: “The Ghostblind places you in the center of nature without nature ever knowing you’re there; the blind perfectly reflects nature! I no longer have to look for the prefect tree to hunt from, my task now is simply locating game and setting up quickly and quietly downwind.”
Pro Staffer - Mark Balette
Mark Balette is a lifelong bow hunter with a passion for hunting whitetails. Mark grew up in the wilds of eastern Texas on his family’s 2,500 acre cattle/hunting ranch. He was one of the first to offer bow hunts for wild hogs in this part of the state, almost 20 years ago. Today, Mark’s B&C Outfitters, situated in Trinity County near Groveton, Tx., offers hunts for many species of exotic animals as well as hogs and whitetails. Mark enjoys hunting from the ground and has this to say about GhostBlind: “I really enjoy the portability and effectiveness of the blinds. We like to take our hunters to where they have the best opportunity of harvesting game and that often is not from a box blind overlooking a corn feeder. What an innovative idea! It’s reinvented the way we will be hunting on the ranch.”
John Bryan - Pro Staffer
John Bryan is a lifelong hunter and has been a hunting guide much of his adult life. With five decades experience in the field, John brings a great deal of knowledge to our pro staff. John currently manages the hunting on the 4,500 acres Holt River Ranch near Graford, Texas where he guides for white-tailed deer, wild hogs and turkey. John also offers guided fishing trips on The Brazos River which serves as the border for about 5 miles of the ranch.
James Ferguson – Pro Staffer
James is an avid hunter but bow hunting is his passion. James has worked in the outdoor industry since 2001 when he formed Bowhunting North America, LLC with his wife and business partner Donna. Bowhunting North America LLC, is a family owned production company that has produced hunting videos and a Television show that focuses on hunting as a family sport. James has chased all types of big game on do it yourself hunts all across the United States but the whitetail deer is his favorite animal to hunt with stick and string.
While searching for a way to bring hunting junkies more of what they
are looking for James decided to start airing hunting episodes online.
There are no commercials to break up the hunt, just sit back and
watch whenever you want 24/7. To watch the show vistit GhostBlind's Bowhunting North America online! See Photo Gallery
Will Echart - Pro Staffer
Will Echart has a dual passion for bow hunting and guiding his clients to livelong hunting memories. Will has chased whitetail, exotics, upland birds and waterfowl all over North America. In 2005, Will founded Wilson James Creative, a graphic design firm rooted in brand and retail marketing, design and promotion. Will brings his knowledge of marketing and passion for hunting to Squaw Mountain Whitetails near Jacksboro, Texas where he guides bow hunters for trophy whitetail, exotics, turkey, ducks and hogs. Will says, "I have hunted from the ground for many years, the GhostBlind is the most revolutionary ground blind I have ever seen. It completely disappears in the woods."
Van Simmons - Pro Staffer
My name is Van Simmons. I have been happily married to my wife for 15 years. We have been blessed with 3 beautiful daughters whom, I love to take hunting with me. I
Have lived in Tennessee most of my life so I grew up around a lot of outdoorsmen. I went hunting as a kid but didn’t get passionate about hunting until the first Christmas with my wife. She bought me my first bow, one that had not been borrowed or handed down. Since then I wake up thinking about hunting and go to bed thinking about hunting.
I feel it is a gift from God that allows us to enjoy the great outdoors and his magnificent creation. His blessings are poured out into my life as I am privileged to travel across North America and Canada to pursue some of my dreams and passions. I do believe and practice trophy management. Through this I have been blessed to have harvested numerous Pope and Young animals. However, it’s not just the size of the rack or number of points, but also, the hunt and who you were with and how you were able to influence their lives, and they yours.
This passion has sparked other hobbies as well. I started doing taxidermy work a few years ago. So I get to spend a lot of time in the off season looking at trophies that others have been blessed to have harvested. I am very fortunate to serving as a Prostaff member with Mothwing Camoflauge, Kishel’s Scents and Lures, Flyaway Outdoor Video, Exciter game calls, Simmons Taxidermy and Millinium Treestands.
Lonnie Collins - Pro Staffer
Lonnie Collins is a bow hunter, archer and guide at The Grand View Ranch in Johannesburg, Michigan for trophy whitetail. Lonnie has been hunting for 40 years, and shooting competitive archery for 19 years. He has articles published in several competitive archery magazines. As an Archery coach and guide, Lonnie loves to share his passion for bow hunting and ethics in the outdoors. Lonnie says that competitive shooting is one of the steps that prepare you for making the shot on the big one, and it makes those long northern winters go by a little quicker. Lonnie feels blessed to have hunted a variety of wild game the United States and South Africa. Lonnie is a Co-op shooter for Mathews, Inc.
Lonnie is happily married to Glenis, his wife and hunting partner. They have been together for over 30 years. Glenis was IBO Triple Crown Champion in 1993. Lonnie says that to do well, he just has to shoot better than Glenis.
Roy Desmond - Pro Staffer
Roy started bowhunting in 1994 when he decided to put the waterfowl decoys away, and strictly started bowhunting whitetails. After the first booner hit the ground he knew he made the right choice! He started turkey hunting in 2004, and used his knowledge of calls, decoys and blinds to start putting arrows through some Illinois Easterns. While guiding for an outfitter for 6 yrs in the golden triangle of Illinois Roy learned there are many guys who prefer hunting from the ground, and he came up with some great strategies. In 2007 Roy had a disc removed from his back, and during the next few years he only hunted the ground. Now with all the knowledge he has gained thru injury forcing the ground only hunting during those years, and the use of a Ghostblind he should put some great animals on the ground. All of his hunting accomplishments have come from self hunting on ground he does work on, and gains permission. Roy has passed up offers to pro staff for other competitor's blinds and actually approached us. We are pleased to have Roy on our staff, and are looking foward to building a lasting relationship!
Don Mulligan - Pro Staffer
Don Mulligan is one of America’s few remaining outdoor writers, photographers or personalities who still hunts and fishes the old fashioned way. Like most hunters, he never uses guides, outfitters, dogs, ATVs, pack animals or hunts managed game ranches. Though much of his work originates from his home and 200 acre wildlife habitat in Indiana, Don travels North America every year in search of true do-it-yourself adventures in the continent’s most rugged and remote locations. A former weekly outdoor feature and photography contributor to the Sunday Indianapolis Star newspaper, Don currently writes a weekly column for several smaller papers in Indiana. He also covers wilderness adventures and writes the deer blog for ESPN.com. For more information on Don, visit OutdoorsWithDon.com.
Troy Franklin – Pro Staffer
Troy Franklin started bow hunting at the age of 12 and has been addicted to bow hunting Big Game animals all over the world every since. He owns and operates Troy’s Custom Wood Craft for 15 years and is an active member and Vice President of Whitetails Unlimited in Minnesota. Troy’s passion has led him to harvest over 20 different species of animals, including exotics, Africa safaris and one of his greatest accomplishments a 155 Whitetail while using his GhostBlind. His choice of bow is the P.S.E. or Hoyt with Rocket Broadheads, and Vapor Black Hawk Arrows. Troy believes that the people he meets and the experience he entails while bow hunting across the world have given him more knowledge to create and explore new outdoor adventures.
Alan Gruver - Pro Staffer
As a Pennsylvania native, Alan has archery hunted since 1992 in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, Colorado, Wyoming and Idaho. Whitetails, turkey and Elk are his passion. He also enjoys fishing as well as Target and Field archery in the off seasons. Alan is blessed with a loving wife and two future hunters, a son and daughter who all enjoy the outdoors and have logged several hours in stand as well. You can read about his first successful D-I-Y archery elk hunt at ArcheryTalkBlog.com. Alan has this to say about the GhostBlind: “I hunt public land where setting up a ground blind pre-season for game to adjust runs the risk of theft. The GhostBlind allows me to hunt these areas with confidence.”
Mike Ford – Pro Staffer
Mike Ford is a 5th generation Texan from Red River County, Texas. He is a ranch owner, the RioRojoRancho, and former All- Southwest Conference Quarterback from SMU in Dallas, as he led the NCAA Division I in total yards in 1978. Having grown up in Mesquite, Texas and playing for the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Cincinnati Bengals, he later in life, with his wife Lori, moved back to Red River County onto property his family has owned since 1909. His family (both sides ) settled in the area in the mid 1800's and first leased 100 acres in 1880, eventually buying the property in 1909. With additional acreage added through the years, the ranch now encompasses some 600 + acres, that is a hunting ranch as well as a Breeding Ranch for Whitetail Deer. With a lifelong passion for the Great Outdoors and a strong interest in Wildlife Management, Mike has traveled all over North America from Northern Canada to South of the border in Mexico in pursuit of the Whitetail Deer and other wildlife in those areas. He truly has a passion for teaching the young and old alike all he can about hunting, fishing and the great outdoors in general. With a lot of help, he has been instrumental in forming the Red River Eastern Turkey Co-Op, a land owner driven wildlife co-op, with goals of education and awareness of all wildlife native to Texas, with emphasis on the Eastern Turkey.