Awards & Memorials


5,000 Hour Volunteer Award

When the Director’s Volunteer 5,000 Hour Service Award was introduced, the Virginia Hunter Education Association was approached by Sgt. David Dodson to consider giving an award for instructors who reach this milestone in Hunter Education.  The Board met and decided to award a Henry Golden Boy .22 caliber Lever Action Rifle to Hunter Education Instructors who have given 5,000 hours to the Hunter Education Program. This decision excludes volunteers who are involved in other programs in The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.


Chauncey Herring 2014
Lee Turner 2014
Monte Brackenridge 2012
Angie Leigh 2012
Vernie Kennedy 2010
Paul Siple 2010
Lester (Danny) Bartee 2009
Frank Taylor 2009
Lewis A. Austin 2008
Jack L. Broughman 2008
John Dodson 2008


William Dixon Morgan Memorial Award
Born January 25, 1953, William Dixon Morgan, better known as “Billy”, was the youngest of three children and the only son of William T. and Magdeline N. Morgan.
He became an Eagle Scout at the age of 14, and at the time of his death he was instructing Boy Scout merit badge classes in Archery, Marksmanship and Wilderness Survival.
Billy participated in a wide range of outdoor activities and was an avid rabbit, squirrel, turkey and deer hunter. He was an outdoorsman who won numerous awards in both archery and firearms competition. In 1980 and 1981 he won National and State awards for whitetail deer.
On the morning of Tuesday, November 22, 1983, two days before Thanksgiving, life for Billy could be no better. He was doing what he loved most; hunting.
At 8:30 a.m., Billy, who was 6’1” and weighed 185 pounds, climbed a 12” diameter leafless tree, to a limb approximately 10 feet above the ground. He did not know another hunter was in the area. Twenty minutes later the other hunter, failing to identify his target, fired the shot that ended Billy’s life.
At the time of Billy’s death, his mother, Magdeline Morgan, was a member of the Virginia Governor’s Advisory Board. Mrs. Morgan, with the help of other board members and the Governor, began promoting the importance of blaze orange. The law requiring the wearing of blaze orange soon became a reality. Mr. And Mrs. Morgan also wanted to establish a memorial for Billy. At the suggestion of Governor Gerald Baliles, a family friend, the idea of an annual hunter safety award was conceived. So, in 1985 the Governor of Virginia, Gerald Baliles, presented the first annual William Dixon Morgan Memorial Award for hunter safety in Richmond, Virginia at a Virginia Game Department Board Meeting.
2015 Morgan Award Presented
Mike Norkus, 2015 Morgan Award Recipient with Jeff Pease, VDGIF Hunter Education Coordinator
Mike Norkus, 2015 Morgan Award Recipient with Jeff Pease, VDGIF Hunter Education Coordinator

Mike Norkus, Master Hunter Education instructor from Colonial Heights, has been named the 2015 recipient of the Morgan Award.

Mike’s passion and focus lies in archery, and his skill and knowledge of the subject has benefitted Virginia hunter education since 1999 when he became an instructor.  Since then he has earned both Senior and Master Instructor status, having invested nearly 3,000 hours to the program and certified 2,635 students.  He is also a Master International Bowhunter Education Program (IBEP) Instructor and is one of only two in the state of Virginia to hold that certification.

He teaches hunter education and IBEP classes in and around Colonial Heights, and volunteers to teach archery at youth and women’s-only events.  Working with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries staff, Mike was instrumental in the development of the Next Level Bow Hunting Workshop that includes an actual bowhunt on a VDGIF Wildlife Management Area.  He is also the lead instructor of the archery teaching team for instructor advanced training sessions, and recently developed a popular and informative class on techniques for recovering wounded game.

Mike is currently assigned to the United States Army Combined Arms Support Command (CASCOM) as a Senior Training Developer, Collective Training Development Division (CTDD), Multifunctional Training Products Branch.  He is a graduate of The University of the State of New York, Albany, NY, with a B.S. and holds an MBA from Central Michigan University, Pleasant, MI.    He is an avid sportsman and enjoys bowhunting for deer, bear and elk, running, working out at the gym, swimming, hiking, fishing, and camping.

Jeff Pease, VDGIF Regional Hunter Education Coordinator, presented the award on September 16, 2016 at Holiday Lake 4-H Center.  Jeff reiterated what many of Mike’s peers have to say about him – he’s “top notch, squared away, does everything 100%, dedicated, passionate about hunting and teaching others, and is someone you want on your team.”


Lee Turner, 2014 recipient, with members of the Morgan family and CPO Kristian Dougherty

John Dunne, 2013 Morgan Award winner with CPO Kristian Dougherty and Sgt. David Dodson


Russ Lewis, 2012 Morgan Award winner, with wife Linda, CPO Sarah Druy and Mandy


Roger Keene 2011 Morgan Award Winner with Region 3 Coordinator Jeff Pease and Morgan Family
Monte Brackenridge, 2010 Morgan Award Winner
Chauncey Herring receiving the Morgan award for 2009
George “Spud” Almond, 2007 Morgan Award Winner

2015 Mike Norkus
2014 Lee Turner
2013 John Dunne
2011 Roger Keene
2012 Russell Lewis
2011 Roger Keene
2010 Monte Brackenridge
2009 Chauncey Herring
2008 Carolyn Elliott
2007 George ”Spud” Almond
2006 Vernie Kennedy
2005 Donald Studer
2004 Michael Holson
2003 Angie Leigh
2002 Rob Zepp
2001 Lester “Danny” Bartee
2000 William D. Shufflebarger
1999 William E. Nichols
1998 Percy “Buddy” Fines, Jr.
1997 Lewis A. Austin
1996 Jack L. Broughman
1995 John W. Dodson
1994 Thomas M. Walters
1993 Gordon W. Hunter
1992 Paul Hockenberry
1991 William L. Prutzman
1990 Barry F. Lape
1989 Franklin L. Taylor
1988 George P. Mason
1987 Paul Siple
1986 Michael J. Clifford
1985 Brian E. Berger


Became Instructor: 9/17/2000
Instructor Level: Senior 3/20/2003   Master 3/21/2005
Volunteer hours: 1,797
Students certified: 2,432
D.O.B.: 8/17/1957
D.O.D.: 10/16/2013

Became Instructor: 1982
Instructor Level: Senior and Master Instructor
Volunteer Hours: Over 800
Students Certified: 2,000
D.O.D.: 9/12/2009

Became Instructor: 3/11/2007
Instructor Level: Senior 2/17/2011 Master 2/17/2011
Volunteer Hours: 1,123
Students Certified: 2,520
D.O.B.: 1/2/1956
D.O.D.: 10/2/2016

1998 Morgan Award Recipient
Became Instructor: 7/22/1981
Instructor Level: Senior 10/21/1986   Master 8/17/1993
Volunteer Hours: Over 2,841
Students Certified: Over 6,000
D.O.B.: 7/3/1942
D.O.D: 9/18/2014

1993 Morgan Award Recipient
Became Instructor: 6/30/1981
Volunteer Hours: 1,902
Students Certified: 7,095
D.O.B.: 12/12/1923
D.O.D: 11/10/2008

Became Instructor: 2/16/1986
Instructor Level: Senior 10/21/1986
Volunteer Hours:  663
Students Certified:  1,655
D.O.B.:  7/24/1921
D.O.D.:  8/6/2016

Became Instructor: 3/6/1980
Instructor Level: Senior 9/10/1986   Master 9/16/1991
Volunteer Hours: 2,707
Students Certified: 2,486
D.O.B.: 8/26/1945
D.O.D.: 6/19/2009

Became Instructor: 9/21/1987
Instructor Level: Senior 9/16/1991   Master 4/7/1993
Volunteer Hours: 2,741
Students Certified: 2,207
D.O.B.: 3/3/1941
D.O.D.: 2/25/2014

Became Instructor: 10/1980
Instructor Level: Senior 9/10/1986   Master 3/8/2000
Volunteer Hours: 1,909
Students Certified: 9,889
D.O.B.: 5/28/1933
D.O.D.: 7/13/2009

2000 Morgan Award Recipient
Became Instructor: 9/15/1983
Instructor Level: Senior 9/10/1986   Master 10/22/1988
Volunteer Hours: 2,950
Students Certified: 4,524
D.O.B.: 11/10/1924
D.O.D.: 2/11/2009

Became Instructor: 3/23/1986
Instructor Level: Senior 10/22/1988   Master 4/7/1993
Volunteer Hours: 2,564
Students Certified: 1,984
D.O.B.: 4/20/1941
D.O.D.: 11/27/2009

Alleghany County Coordinator
1987 Morgan Award Recipient
Became Instructor: 10/1/1961
Instructor Level: Senior 9/10/1986   Master 3/27/1996
Volunteer Hours: 5,037
Students Certified: 17,183
D.O.B.: 7/27/1921
D.O.D.: 3/13/2015

Became Instructor: 7/1/1988
Instructor Level: Senior 8/15/2002 Master 4/6/2004
Volunteer Hours: 2,806
Students Certified: 2,749
D.O.B.: 6/23/1949
D.O.D.: 4/17/2016

Became Instructor: 4/23/1995
Instructor Level: Senior 3/28/1996   Master 2/20/2002
Volunteer Hours: 1,721
Students Certified: 1,664
D.O.B: 1/6/1945
D.O.D: 9/21/2013

Became Instructor: 4/2/2000
Instructor Level: Senior 8/15/2002
Volunteer Hours: 862
Students Certified: 1,064
D.O.B: 4/29/1942
D.O.D: 10/27/2010

Became Instructor: 3/7/2010
Instructor Level: Senior 2/23/2012  Master 3/12/2014
Volunteer Hours:  1,212
Students Certified: 2,180
D.O.D: 8/13/2016, age 54

Stanley, VA, Page Co. Coordinator
Became Instructor: 4/24/1994
Instructor Level: Senior 4/2/1996   Master 3/23/2000
Volunteer Hours: 2,121
Students Certified: Over 1,500
D.O.B.: 4/15/1