News Release

Coastal Conservation Association New York

PO Box 1118, West Babylon, NY 11704



CONTACT: Charles Witek, 1-800-201-FISH


CCA New York to honor John McMurray on September 15


WEST BABYLON, NY – Coastal Conservation Association New York (CCA NY) has announced plans to present its 2006 “Friend of Fisheries” award to outdoor writer, light-tackle guide and conservationist John McMurray of Long Beach.  The award will be presented at the annual fund-raising banquet hosted by CCA NY’s Nassau chapter on the evening of September 15, at the Manor East in Massapequa.

McMurray began his conservation career while in the United States Coast Guard, where he served as a boarding officer involved with marine fisheries enforcement.  Upon leaving the service, he served as Executive Director for CCA NY, then left that post to accept a post at the Norcross Wildlife Foundation, where he currently serves as Director of Grants Programs.  Since leaving CCA NY, McMurray has carved out a niche as a writer specializing in conservation and responsible angling issues, writing a regular conservation column for Fly Fishing in Salt Waters magazine and serving as New York/New Jersey regional editor for the website  He is a frequent contributor to Salt Water Sportsman and Sport Fishing magazines, and to The Fisherman, a regional angling newspaper.  His work has also appeared in a host of other publications, including The New York Times.

“In everything he writes, John has been an outspoken advocate for conservation and sustainable fisheries management,” notes Charles Witek, Chair of CCA NY.  “Often, he has been a very lonely voice of reason, trying to educate readers about real fisheries problems while too many of his fellow scribes spend their time attacking scientists, criticizing fisheries managers and generally sounding no different then spokesmen for the commercial fishing fleet, who are only interested in a bigger kill.”

                McMurray is also a Coast Guard-licensed captain, and runs the successful One More Cast Charters, which specializes in guiding anglers on the waters of Jamaica Bay, New York.  As a captain, he emphasizes the need for conservation to his clients. 

                “Too many local charter captains emphasize packed coolers and dead-fish pictures at the end of the day,” says Brian O’Keefe, President of CCA NY’s Nassau Chapter.  “John teaches that quality fishing requires respect for the fish.  For two years in a row, his flyfishing clients caught huge weakfish—fish of 15 pounds or more, that would have been line-class world records and brought his business a lot of publicity—but they were laden with roe, and the weakfish population isn’t doing so well, so the fish were released to spawn.”

William Raab, CCA NY’s President, says of McMurray, “Through the years, he has been a real friend to both our fisheries and to CCA NY.  That doesn’t mean that we always agree.  He has written a couple of pretty critical columns over the years.  But that makes him the best kind of friend—the kind who’s honest enough to tell you when he thinks that you’re making a mistake.  Like everything else John does, it requires real integrity, and a bit of courage.”

CCA NY invites the angling public to join in honoring John McMurray, and to help CCA NY continue its mission to restore and conserve the marine resources of New York, by attending the Nassau banquet.  In addition to the awards presentation, it will feature a full meal, live and silent auctions for angling-related and other items (including a fishing trip with John McMurray) and a bucket auction.  Doors will open at 7:30 pm.  Tickets cost $60 for an individual, $90 per couple, and will include a one-year membership to CCA.  For tickets or more information, call Brian O’Keefe at                                   or Charles Witek at 631-587-2211, or e-mail   


CCA NY is a state chapter of the Coastal Conservation Association, a national grassroots advocate for fisheries conservation.  To best accomplish its mission of rebuilding and conserving the marine resources of New York for the use and enjoyment of the state’s private citizens, CCA NY limits its membership to individual anglers and other interested persons, and depends on contributions made by such individuals for its funding.  No corporate, organizational or other business-related memberships are accepted