Thursday, August 17, 2017

Eric Creighton

eric_creighton1_smlEric Creighton - Adminstartor, Editor and Bowhunter


Eric’s involvement in the development of bowhunting and field archery in Australia has a history going back some 30 years. In 1980 he took up a position at the Batchelor Area School in the Northern Territory as an Outdoor Educator.

His role in overseeing the development of a curriculum in outdoor education soon saw him attending a course in archery conducted by the Top End Bowhunters Club at the Darwin Air Force Base so that the sport could be introduced to the activities of the Bachelor Camp School. It was from this humble introduction to the sport that later saw 5000 Territorian children instructed in the use of a bow and arrow over a period of four years by Eric and his offsider Matt Kelly.

This successful partnership went on to form the Bachelor Bowhunters Club with Eric as President. There were few adults in the Club but a good deal of the towns children attended events and participated in bow making and other activities conducted by Matt and Eric. In 1981 having joined the Top End Bowhunters Club, he also joined the Australian Bowhunters Association and thus began an incredible journey covering 30 years of involvement of administration in bowhunting and eventually leading to the Australian Archery Hall of Fame as an inductee in 2011.

As elected ABA Zone (Branch) Controller in 1981 for the Northern Territory he set about doubling the membership through a regular newsletter and then in 1983 organised and oversaw the inaugural NT Barebow Championships which were conducted at the Batchelor Club. His successes were certainly noticed and in1983 he was elected to the ABA National position of Vice-President Bowhunting. A position in which he excelled. He reorganised and rationalised the Game Recording System and most aspects of the Bowhunting Division over four years in that position, increasing the profile of the Bowhunting Division through promoting and overseeing its activities at ABA National Safaris.

Eric is a dedicated bowhunter who is a Senior member of the Trophy Bowhunters Australia Club, received the Master Bowhunter Award in 1984 and is recognised as having received the Bowhunter Royale Award.

In 1985, Eric was the prime mover in developing and introducing the Bowhunter Education Program and the self-regulatory system of accrediting and certifying bowhunters. He produced, edited the documentation on which the program was based and was soley responsible for devising and producing all the support material. Today the ABA Bowhunter Education Program gives credibility to the sport in Australia. In recognition for his contribution and promotion to bowhunting he received the Sports Australia Award of Administrator of the year in 1985.

Together with two other executive in 1986, he became heavily involved with the computerisation of the Association records and later took on a leading role in the conversion from Macintosh to IBM format of records and program enhancing to increase productivity. This was a busy year for Eric, as he was appointed Team Manager to the Australian contingent competing at the International Field Archery Association Championships in Scotland where he also doubled as the Australian delegate to the IFAA Council meeting.

Eric teamed with Steve Fuller in editing, producing and contributing to the “Pocket Guide to Bowhunting” booklet. In 1987 he was elected ABA Senior Vice President, a position he held through until 1994.

In 1988 Eric organised and contributed significantly to the rewrite of the National Measuring Manual and negotiated the purchase of Archery Action Magazine on behalf of the Association.

The 1990 Congress Meeting of the World Bowhunting Association saw Eric elected to the position of Vice-President and South Pacific Regional representative. Additionally he served on the Technical, Bowhunter Education, Scientific, Statutes and Ethical Committees of the WoBA.

At the 1994 Congress Meeting of the WoBA Eric was elected to the position of President, which he held for two four year terms and saw the adoption of the Trophy Bowhunters International Measuring and Game Recording System developed and produced jointly by Eric and Tom Mitchell. Over the following eight years, Eric produced and edited two leather bound editions of the WoBA , Trophy Bowhunters International Record Book which was based on the system of game measurement developed by Tom and himself. Eric was appointed Trophy Bowhunters International Chairman in 1990, his contribution to the final adopted Statutes of the WoBA and its code of ethics was more than substantial.

He was elected to the position of President of the ABA for the following 6 years until his retirement in 2000 when he was awarded ABA Life Membership for his outstanding service to the Association.

Over the next six years he continued to contribute behind the scenes as the Immediate Past President at bi-monthly National Executive Meetings, AGM’s, through his ongoing contribution to Archery Action and his consolidation and review of the Associations Constitution in 2006. With the failing health of ABA National Executive Officer (Syd Green) and his subsequent passing, Eric stepped into the role of Executive Director of the Association and Editor of the Archery Action Magazine.

In his role as Editor, he has guided the publication from essentially black and white newsprint of 64 pages to a full colour, full gloss magazine of 88 pages in less than two years. The magazine represents all facets of the sport regardless of its background and is a credit to Eric’s initiatives and editorial expertise.

Since taking on the role of Executive Director of ABA he has led the introduction of transparency in administration and pursued a vision of progress for archery as a total entity which has seen the coming together of the three national archery associations to further the sport on a combined front. His ability to get things done was again displayed by the introduction of coloured photographic targets for use on ABA field course rounds.

Eric is a quiet, productive achiever for his sport and has played a significant role in the development of the Australian Bowhunter Association to where it is today.



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