Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Tom Gallagher Award for Tree Stand Safety Awareness

The Tom Gallagher Award for Tree Stand Safety Awareness (2024) was awarded at the International Hunter Education Association-USA Annual Conference at Big Cedar Lodge on June 20th. This year’s recipient was Trevor Lemon from North Carolina. The IHEA-USA award was presented in cooperation with Glen Mayhew, President of Tree Stand Safety Awareness Foundation, and David Smith, Executive Director of the Tree Stand Manufacturers Association.

The award is given annually at the IHEA-USA conference to a Hunter Education Instructor in recognition of their advocacy, promotion, and teaching of safe tree stand practices which aligns with the mission of the TSSA Foundation. Nominees must have been teaching HE for at least 3 years, hold certification as a tree stand safety instructor, be actively involved in his/her region, state, and/or nationally promoting tree stand safety, and serve as an advocate and promoter of tree stand safety outside the confines of teaching hunter education.

This year’s recipient, Trevor Lemon, a hunter education instructor from North Carolina, was one of several nominees. According to the nominator, Trevor “brings the tree stand fall to life, made an impact on the instructors and video of the "fall" has been referenced in hunter education courses, and will be used in the 2024 tree stand safety campaign for NC.” Trevor developed a block of instruction for our instructors as our annual instructor retreat/weekend on tree stand safety. This block of instruction included real-life incidents, scenarios, and equipment reviews. To end the training session, Trevor utilized one of the 180-pound training mannequins, a ladder stand, G-force impact patches from the NC Highway Patrol, and rope.

The award is named after Tom Gallagher who has been actively involved in the outdoors industry for over four decades and is a founding board member of the Tree Stand Safety Awareness Foundation. Tom has played instrumental roles in the evolution of tree stands and other hunting products while keeping safety at the forefront. He was the Cabelas Vice President of Merchandizing, in Hunting, for many years and has served on numerous boards during his tenure, including the Archery Trade Association (ATA), Tree Stand Manufacture’s Association (TMA), and Hunter Specialties. His advocacy for consumer safety and the ability to work with industry leaders are just two of the leadership qualities that always made Tom a standout.

TSSA Foundation is a grassroots 501(c)(3) organization that serves the industry as a resource with its sole focus on significantly reducing tree stand accidents through promotion, education and best practices. For more info on the SSA Foundation, contact Glen Mayhew, President, at; 540-526-5157 or Jay Everett at; 256-773-7732.