Roy E. Weatherby – Founder of Weatherby Firearms – 2015

What many hunters of today take for granted exists due to the fascination with ballistics of Roy E. Weatherby, founder of the California-based firearms and ammunition company that bears his name. In the 1940’s Weatherby set out to prove his theory that lightweight bullets traveling at super high speeds would perform better on game animals than heavy bullets fired at low velocity. Working out of his garage in Huntington Park, and later his factory in South Gate, Weatherby caught the eye of hunters across the globe who demanded not only his ammunition, but firearms able to withstand the pressures generated by the new cartridges. In response, Weatherby created the Mark V action that was stronger and safer than anything developed previously. It is still considered the world’s strongest bolt-action. In testing his creations, Weatherby’s pursuit of game — from hunting polar bears in the Bering Strait to quests for Africa’s “Big 5” of dangerous game — brought him to every continent.

Devoted to wildlife conservation, Weatherby’s annual “Hunting and Conservation Award — started in 1956 — recognizes tremendous accomplishments coupled with ethical hunting behavior. The award thrives today through Weatherby Foundation International, which was formed just after Roy’s passing as a tribute to his ideals. The mission of this non-profit is to educate youths and the non-hunting public about the beneficial role of ethical hunting to wildlife conservation. Since 1998 more than 1 million people — half of them 18 or younger — have participated in Foundation sponsored events