I ran into Sam Lemmon at the Ovis Convention in Tunica, Mississippi. What grabbed my attention was the unusual variety of hunts he had on offer. What was the connection between them, I asked? How did he come to focus on those particular hunts? Turns out Lemmon is about the pickiest agent I have ever met when it comes to selecting outfitters to represent.
What does he look for? First of all, he says he looks for someone who wants help maximizing his business. That can be a brand-new outfitter who needs help designing his hunt program from the ground up, or an outfitter with many years experience who wants to expand his business. He also looks for a record of success in other endeavors - that is, individuals who have a proven ability to make sound business and financial decisions. He also seeks someone with good communication skills and who is able to relate to people from a wide variety of backgrounds.
An example of a new operation Lemmon is working with at present is a bowhunting program he put together for two landowners in southern Illinois who together have 9,000 acres spanning Franklin and Jefferson counties. This is in a Mennonite community, where the whitetail deer are unpressured, well fed and have time to grow. Last year, one of Lemmon's clients killed a buck that gross-scored 217 B & C. He says this is the third buck taken in this area in two years that scores over 200........(continued)