GAS Bowstrings Hires Braden Gellenthien as New General Manager and Other Industry News

GAS Bowstrings hires Braden Gellenthien as new general manager; ATA welcomes Alex Heiser as director of marketing and communications; Bass Pro Shops U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship returns to Louisiana; ATA announces 2024 Board of Directors election results; Xpedition Archery adds two engineers; and Lancaster Archery Foundation awards $100,000.

GAS Bowstrings Hires Braden Gellenthien as New General Manager and Other Industry News

GAS Bowstrings Hires Braden Gellenthien as New General Manager

GAS Bowstrings recently announced the addition of well-known tournament archer Braden Gellenthien as its new general manager. In his role, Braden will play a crucial role in assisting the staff to streamline processes, enhance efficiency and contribute to product innovation.

As one of the most decorated archers in World Cup history, Braden brings unparalleled expertise and experience to the GAS Bowstrings team.

Braden Gellenthien
Braden Gellenthien

“Braden officially joining GAS Bowstrings is an incredible boost for our team!” said GAS Bowstrings President Eric Griggs. “The same drive that has made Braden one of the best to ever shoot a compound bow, is evident in every challenge he takes on. This guy just wins! It’s going to be great to bring his drive, experience and winning presence to our already amazing team.”

Braden expressed his excitement about joining the GAS Bowstrings team, stating, “Eric has been one of my biggest mentors and friends throughout my career. He taught me to strive to be the best in the world and leave no stone unturned in that pursuit. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve looked to transition from a professional archer to an archery professional. I’m excited to be working alongside Eric and the team at GAS Bowstrings as they mirror my passion for keeping the pedal to the floor. It’s an honor to be a part of an amazing team and I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for us!”

For more information, call (606) 612-5156 or visit

ATA Welcomes Alex Heiser as Director of Marketing and Communications

Alex Heiser, new director of marketing and communications, joins the Archery Trade Association with 35 years of experience leading strategic marketing plans, guiding the success of non-profit member driven organizations and managing remote staff.

Alex Heiser
Alex Heiser

Heiser will be responsible for the strategic development and execution of the marketing and communications plan of the ATA and its brands including the ATA Show, Bowhunters United, outreach programs, advocacy and membership promotions. He will also serve on the ATA leadership team and collaborate with directors of Trade Show, Membership, Outreach & Education and Government Relations on strategic communication strategies.

“Alex’s extensive experiences and skill sets from his previous positions will be applicable to the many projects the ATA MarCom team touches,” said ATA President and CEO Jeff Poole. “His leadership experience and familiarity with hunting and the outdoor recreation community will help him better connect with members and improve the ATA’s communications.”

Before joining the ATA, Alex was the director of operations, systems and data information for the North Dakota Safety Council. Prior to that position, he was with the Delta Waterfowl Foundation for 7  years as its VP of marketing, communications and membership. Alex is an active outdoorsman and enjoys fishing and hunting deer, elk, turkey and waterfowl.

Heiser hopes to drive clear paths of communication with all constituents through strategic marketing efforts that support the success and growth of the ATA brands.

ATA members can contact Heiser at (507) 233-8136 or

Bass Pro Shops U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship Returns to Louisiana

The Bass Pro Shops U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship will welcome sportsmen and women back to Louisiana on April 27-28, 2024. The 11th annual competition will be hosted at the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s in Gonzales, with eligible tournament waters extended throughout Louisiana. In 2019, nearly 200 teams competed in northern Louisiana, with weigh-in festivities at Bass Pro Shops in Bossier City.

The popular event is open to two- to four-person teams and offers the largest payout of any bowfishing tournament, providing over $100,000 in cash and prizes.

“The dynamic sport of bowfishing is a unique blend of hunting and fishing that hooks any sportsman or woman once they try it,” said John Paul Morris, founder of the Bass Pro Shops U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship. “We’re excited to bring the U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship to the swamps, bayous, rivers and lakes of Louisiana.”

In addition to the large payout, conservation side pots are awarded for the harvest of the largest invasive species, including: grass carp, common carp, bighead carp and silver carp on tournament night. A top-five finish in a TRACKER Bowfishing Boat will mean bonus cash for teams, with a $10,000 bonus for the first-place team. The first- through fifth-place teams receive guaranteed payouts.

All anglers will receive an official tournament shirt, and teams that pre-register will automatically be entered into a drawing for a TRACKER Grizzly 2072 Bowfishing Boat Package, valued at more than $40,000.

In addition to a fun weekend for participants and families, the premier bowfishing event provides lasting conservation benefits for area waterways. Bowfishing helps reduce populations of invasive, non-native fish species. Native game fish benefit from selective harvest of non-game fish, with improved habitat and water quality.

Visitors are welcome to attend the event and enjoy vendor booths, seminars, food and live music, shooting lanes and prizes for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages. Entry fees are $300 per team of two to four persons, and all teams must pre-register online. For entry information, complete rules and a list of official tournament waters, visit

ATA Announces 2024 Board of Directors Election Results

Voters in the 2024 Archery Trade Association Board of Directors election retained two current members and installed one newly-elected member.

Joel Maxfield, brand ambassador for Mathews Inc.; Justin Gorman, CEO for Kinsey’s Inc.; and Jason Harris, director of marketing and product management at Primos/Vista Outdoor Inc., were elected by their peers during the recent election.

“ATA’s Board members are committed and well-suited to advance the organization’s goals and mission,” said Jeff Poole, ATA’s president and CEO. “They are a talented group with the knowledge, experience and passion to lead our industry.”

Mathews Archery and Kinsey’s Inc. will continue to hold their seats on the Board, with Primos/Vista Outdoor Inc. set to join.

"I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve another term as a Board member,” Maxfield said. “With a firm commitment to our mission, I’m excited to continue the journey of driving positive change, fostering collaboration, and ensuring our organization's sustained success. Thank you for the ongoing confidence and support."

“As a re-elected Board member, I'm humbled by the continued support and trust of our community," Gorman said. "This renewed mandate fuels my passion to further contribute to the growth and prosperity of our organization. Together, we will build on past achievements and navigate the future challenges that lie ahead.”

Newly-elected Harris is excited to advance the ATA’s mission by serving on the Board. “I’m honored to be elected by my friends and colleagues to serve the ATA as the newest Board member,” Harris said. “Archery and hunting have been my life-long passion, and I’m committed to serving the Archery Trade Association to execute toward the vision and success of our organization.”

The 4-year term for Maxfield, Gorman and Harris will end March 31, 2028. They will join Poole, the ATA’s senior leadership and the current Board members at the 2024 ATA Board of Directors’ meeting held in Indianapolis, April 14-16, 2024.

Departing the ATA Board are Jeff Adee of Headhunter Bow Strings and Mark Copeland of Jay’s Sporting Goods. Jeff Greer from Music City Archery will replace Copeland on the Board as the Retail Council representative.

“Jeff and Mark have been instrumental leaders on the ATA Board for many years, tackling and resolving numerous issues,” Poole said. “The ATA is grateful for their service and contributions and know their direction and guidance will leave a lasting impression on our industry.”

Contact Jennifer Mazur, ATA’s senior director of outreach and education, at or with questions.

Xpedition Archery Adds Two Engineers

Xpedition Archery recently welcomed Sean Keeney and Jason Fogg to its team of skilled engineers.

"Over the past couple of years, our focus at Xpedition Archery has led to groundbreaking advancements such as the XLITE platform and MAGNITE material, as well as overall improvements to the consumer experience,” said Senior VP Brady Arview. “We're looking for employees who share our passion and have extensive hands-on experience in the field, along with being experts in their craft. Sean and Jason fit the bill perfectly and will play key roles in our efforts to redefine archery.”

Aside from being an avid bowhunter, Keeney comes from a great pedigree as the son of an accomplished industry engineer. His natural passion for the outdoors drove internship opportunities with Mathews Archery and The Outdoor Group as he earned a degree in mechanical engineering. Post graduate, Keeney earned his credentials as a design engineer for the likes of Hunter Specialities, Barnett, and Bear Archery.

“The team here at XA makes you feel like you’re part of a family, and pioneering the way through new materials is an added bonus,” said Keeney. “I couldn’t wait to be a part of the team that’s bringing the best archery systems in our industry into the hands of those that share our passion.”

Fogg brings an outstanding resume of education (mechanical engineering degree and MBA) and innovative archery accolades to Xpedition Archery. His resume includes the likes of industry flagships Hoyt, Barnett and TenPoint, where he assisted in the design of known innovative technology such as the Hoyt TEC riser, Split Limbs, Cam & ½ and the Carbon Matrix. Fogg’s industry accomplishments are substantiated in his archery achievements in state NFAA and outdoor Idaho State 3D Championships, as well as a roster of archery big game harvests.

“I am extremely excited to join the fantastic team at Xpedition Archery!” Fogg said. “Their proprietary metal nano composite, MAGNITE, is truly revolutionary and will soon become the material of choice for serious bowhunters.”

“Keeney and Fogg’s expertise, passion, and dedication provide invaluable assets to Xpedition Archery as we continue to drive innovation and excellence in vertical bows,” said VP Andrew Sibble.

Xpedition Archery President Mark Heck said, "Our commitment to the bowhunting community requires experienced leadership, Sean and Jason bring exactly that. We're thrilled to have them join our team, and we have high expectations for their contributions to the industry."

Lancaster Archery Foundation Presents $100,000 in Grants

The Lancaster Archery Foundation, working with a matching grant from Easton Foundations, has awarded $100,000 to organizations from Barrow, Alaska, to Covington, Louisiana, under the Growing Youth Archery Together grant program.

The money will be used in a variety of ways, but all with the goal of helping clubs and programs get more kids involved in archery.

“This was a big challenge for our foundation,” said Rob Kaufhold, president of the Lancaster Archery Foundation’s board of directors. “From raising the funds to secure the matching grant from Easton Foundations, to soliciting and reviewing grant applications from across the country, to awarding $100,000 to programs that will show kids the value and enjoyment that archery can bring to their lives, the Lancaster Archery Foundation stayed focused on its core values of caring, integrity, perseverance and faith in this endeavor.”

In honor of the 100th anniversary of Easton Archery in 2022, Easton Foundations challenged the Lancaster Archery Foundation to raise $100,000 in order to receive a matching grant of $100,000 from Easton.

Through a variety of means, including direct donations, a round-up program for purchases from Lancaster Archery Supply and a daylong telethon, the Lancaster Archery Foundation in September 2022 raised the $100,000 needed to get the Easton Foundations matching grant.

The Lancaster Archery Foundation annually “provides resources to grow, educate and develop athletes in competitive archery,” in accordance with its mission statements. The Growing Youth Archery Together grant program was specially created to distribute the Easton Foundations matching grant. It was advertised through a variety of sources to spread the word among clubs across the country involved in NASP, S3DA, JOAD, 4-H and OAS.

Nearly 60 grant applications were received and reviewed by the Lancaster Archery Foundation’s directors, who ultimately awarded 22 grants totaling $100,000 to clubs and programs from 14 states. The average grant was around $5,000. The original $100,000 raised during the fund drive will be used to pay for the foundation’s normal grants.

Dale Brubaker, Lancaster Archery Foundation’s grant coordinator, said the majority of the awarded funding will be used to purchase target mats, 3-D targets, bows and range equipment, such as backstop netting and target stands.

Following is a list of the Lancaster Archery Foundation’s Growing Youth Archery Together grant program recipients: Asheville Archery Training Center of Asheville, NC; Flint River Archery Club of Burlington, IA; Jeffersontown High School Archery of Louisville, KY; Taylor County 4-H Archers of Campbellsville, KY; Hawkins County 4-H of Rogersville, TN; Bibb County 4-H Archery Club of Macon, GA; Northwest Missouri Long Shots of Helena, MT; Western Colorado Archers of Delta, CO; Calvary Baptist Academy Archery of Shreveport, LA; Ontelaunee Rod & Gun Club Inc. of New Tripoli, PA; York-Hopewell S3DA of Stewartstown, PA; Benton Intermediate School NASP of Benton, LA; Barrow High School of Barrow, AK; Podium JOAD of Paris, KY; Creek County 4-H Archery Club of Kellyville, OK; Buena Vista University Archery of Storm Lake, IA; Iron Dragon Archery of Orange, NJ; 4-H Cherokee County Shooting Sports of Tahlequah, OK; Central Texas Archery of Austin, TX; St. Tammany Parish 4-H of Covington, LA; Western PA Youth Outdoorsman Inc. of Darlington, PA; and SAGES Archers of Fox Lake, WI.


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