Profile of Wil Wegman

Wil's Profile

UPDATED APRIL 5, 2020: Wil Wegman had his first newspaper article published in 1985 and a year later began writing a weekly newspaper column called the Great Outdoors for a Richmond Hill newspaper. For the next ten years he would write for this paper but his column also went into syndication and was appearing in other weekly’s in Aurora, Newmarket and the Kawartha Region. He soon began freelancing for magazines and has had numerous articles published in such great Canadian magazines as: Ontario Out of Doors, Outdoor Canada, Bob Izumi’s Real Fishing, Big Jim's Just Fishing and all issues of Bassman Magazine. In fact he became editor of BassMan, and until May 2010 helped develop some of Canada's most intriguing bass related articles and columns thru this publication. American publications like In Fisherman, Bassmaster and BASS TIMES have also published Wegman’s work. He is the “Hooked On Fishing” columnist for Lake Simcoe Living Magazine and his articles can be seen on the www.lakesimcoeliving.com site.

From 2006 until 2009 Wil wrote a weekly newspaper column for the Georgina Advocate called Focus on Fishing. He was a regular contributor to the Toronto Sun’s annual National Fishing Week section when that was an annual feature. In 2006 and 2012 he won a National Outdoor Writing Award for articles he wrote for that section.  Numerous feature length articles written by Wil can also be seen on the popular www.fishonlineca.com site and at www.timeonthewater.org  Wil is a regular contributor to several Tourism Guides and websites that publish his articles on fishing area lakes and enjoying the wonderful fishing resorts around them. From 1991-2010 ... an official B.A.S.S.Press Observer, he covered more Bassmaster Classic and several other BASS events in the US than any other Canadian writer.  For many of those years (1995-2010) , as Conservation director for the Ontario BASS Nation (OBN), Wil also participated in the National Conservation workshops, and in 2020, to commerote the 50th annual Bassmaster Classic, Wil returned to participate as a special guest for the Conservation Summit and to cover the first time ever that three Canadian Anglers had qualified for this, the world championships of bass fishing. 

As well as being a prolific and award winning outdoor writer, Wil is also a successful bass tournament competitor (since 1986) and has qualified three times for Team Ontario, representing the OBN at Bassmaster Divisional Championships in the US. Since the mid 1980's Wil was a prominent figure on several Canadian bass tournament circuits that included OV Pro Bass, GM Pro Bass, Bass Mania and the Bassmania Tournament Trail. Of late, Wil only fishes the occasional larger tournament - learning that his competitive juices are satisfied with the dozen bass tournaments his Aurora Bassmaster Club runs every year.  Over the years, Wil has won the prestigous "Angler of the Year Award" for his club an astonishing four times but he is even more proud of spearheading dozens of conservation projects for his club (as their conservation director from 1995-present). Those habitat restoration, bass tagging research, roadside clean-up, used fishing line recycle depots and invasive species removal projects have helped his club win numerous conservation projects over the years. 

From 1986-2010, Wil taught bass fishing courses at various campuses of Seneca, Georgian and Fleming College. His 12 hour in-class bass sessions are accredited with introducing hundreds of anglers to competitive fishing through his bi-annual amBASSadors Cup Tournaments that were open only to students of the course. For 20 years Wil also taught his less intense but well-aclaimed his ice fishing courses included a 3 hour classroom session follwed by a day or weekend of ice fishing.  Today he focus's more on how-to seminars that see him travel from Niagara New York to Ottawa, north to Sudbury and many stops in between.

Wil has been a guest on several episodes of Bob Izumi’s Real Fishing Show – including one that won the top award in the 2006 Outdoor Writers of Canada TV Fishing Show category for an episode of Wil and Bob fishing the Toronto Islands. In 2008, he was on a two part Real Fishing ice fishing show filmed on Lake of Woods. Wil is the only special guest who has appeared with  every one of the three hosts on the long running Angler and Hunter Television Show.   He is also a frequent guest with Outdoor Journal’s Radio Hour on the Fan 590, and has been interveiwed many times on numerous other radio shows.  Wil was a member of Team Canada at the World Ice Fishing Championships in 1991 and has several top ten finishes in the Canadian Ice Fishing Championships. In 2006 he won the Perch Trap Attack on Lake Simcoe and in 2011 he and his son Izaak won the inaugaral MS Perch Tournament which saw 75 teams compete.

Other:

· In 2017, Wil was inducted into the Canadian Angler Hall of Fame

. Also in 2017, he won OFAH's Rick Morgan Professional Conservation Award as well as the Department of Fisheries and Oceans' National Recreational Fisheries Award.

. Wil's loyalty to longtime sponsors like Rapala and HT Enterprises dates back to 1986 and continue strong today. He has great support from companies such as Lowrance Electonics and Heels Marine Electronic Instalations.  

· Employed full time with Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry for the past 32 years as a Resources Management Technician.

· Wil was a founding member and on the organizing committee (responsible for media and communications) for "Canada’s Premier One Day Bass Tournament" which continually setting the record for the 5 heavies bass ever weighed in during a Canadian Bass Tournament @ over 30 pounds for 5 fish)  – the Bass Pro Shops Lake Simcoe Open from 2006 - 2018.

· Co-ordinator of award winning Five Year Lake Simcoe Bass Tagging Research Project from 2006-2010. Over 1,300 bass tagged at tournaments providing information on seasonal movements, population dynamics and effectiveness of fizzing 

· Winner of 2004 and 2013 Bill Bond Memorial Award- “For dedication to promoting & conserving the Lake Simcoe fishery”

· Winner of  2006 “BASS Nation Conservation Director of the Year Award for the Eastern Division” and Ontario BASS Federation Nation Member of the Year Award

. He was on Advisory Panel and writer for US Publication "Bass Club Digest Magazine' until it folded in 2012

. He is a member of the advisory panel for the Ontario Chineses Anglers Association

. Winner of 1991 Greg Clarke Outdoor Writing Award

. Winner of 2006 and 2012 OWC National Fishing Week Outdoor Writing Award

. In the summer of 2013, Wil took up lapwimming at his local pool in Bradord and completed the 4km Sun City Swim in Orillia across Lake Couchiching. He raised more money (over $2,000) for this charity swim than any of the other swimmers and has done so every year since up until present day.

· Excellent name recognition and very well respected within angling community, Wil is contacted regularly by other writers and media personalities to share his expertise on all-things fishing related.

You can reach Wil at: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it