HISTORY

Waterloo newspaperman Herb Smith is credited as founder of the Outdoor Writers of Canada in 1957. With Smith as the OWC's first president, the charter membership consisted of newspaper and magazine writers, but has since grown to include authors, script writers, photographers, cinematographers, artists, illustrators, radio & television personalities, lecturers, public relations specialists, and outdoor industry contacts.
The original concept behind the OWC was craft improvement, but it quickly became evident that there was a need to work closely with government, industry, organizations and private interests to educate and promote the responsible use of Canada's natural resources.
2008, OWC Headquarters moved to Cochrane, Alberta.

VISION STATEMENT

A community of professional outdoor communicators that is well informed, interconnected and enthusiastic about promoting hunting, fishing and other traditional outdoor activities.

MISSION STATEMENT

The Outdoor Writers of Canada (OWC) is an organization of individual communicators and corporate partners that promotes and recognizes high standards of craftsmanship and professional conduct among its members. The OWC provides services to members to assist them in achieving success and excellence in outdoor communications related to hunting, fishing and other traditional outdoor activities.

OBJECTIVES

To stimulate interest in and an appreciation of the outdoors. To stimulate high standards of craftsmanship among those concerned with the portrayal of outdoor life. To co-operate with others in support of the responsible use(s) of Canada's natural resources.

OUR CREED

We believe...

  • that truth, accuracy and fairness are fundamental in reporting the outdoors.
  • that the ethics of our craft demand a responsibility to search out facts and present them honestly and conscientiously.
  • it to be a public trust never to permit personal gain to sway our judgement or to stoop to plagiarism.
  • that no member should solicit any goods and / or services for consideration, direct or indirect, whether promotional or otherwise, that would influence or appear to influence the truth, accuracy and fairness in his or her reporting about the outdoors.
CHRONOLOGY
1957
OWC founded by Herb Smith at the Toronto Men's Press Club
1958
1st Annual Meeting held at Shoofly Lodge, ON
1963
Outdoor Writing Awards competition established
1967
OWC hosts the 1st World Congress of Outdoor Writers at Mont Tremblant, PQ
1974
Pete McGillen Award introduced - Ernie Taylor, 1st recipient
1975
Quebec chapter separates from the OWC
1986
Craft improvement supplement added to Inside Outdoors newsletter
1990
OWC constitution drafted / amended / adopted
1998
OWC website posted on the InterNet
1999
Membership survey conducted
2000
OWC Strategic Plan 2000 - 2004 adopted
2008
Head office was moved to Cochrane, Alberta
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