Three Young Women Receive Scholarships to Attend the SEOPA Conference

Editor’s Note: Due to the postponement of the 2020 and 2021 conferences, these winners will attend the upcoming conference along with a yet-to-be-determined recipient of the 2022 Lindsay Sale-Tinney Award.

(BADIN, N.C.) – Amy Cawley’s resume reads like that of someone twice her age. In addition to being involved in more than a dozen extracurricular activities last year, this rising college freshman shoots, writes, volunteers, and maintains a social media presence across all platforms. Her enthusiasm for all she does jumped off the pages of her application for the Lindsay Sale-Tinney Award, winning her a scholarship to experience the 2021 SEOPA Fall Conference in Daniels, WV, next month.

After mulling over several career paths, she “stumbled upon” the world of competitive shooting. Cawley had a modicum of trapshooting experience but found her passion when she expanded her efforts to skeet and sporting clays. Sharing her journey with the world soon followed. Cawley created an Instagram page to highlight her shooting journey (@HerShootingJourney). “I realized quickly that I had found a sense of purpose, and I now had direction towards working in social media, Cawley said. “I love the analytical side of it, along with the process of going out to shoot, capturing new content, coming up with captions, and finding new ways to engage my growing following.”

Cawley is a contributor to Junior Shooters Magazine, a member of the National Honors Society, and will seek a major in Business/Digital Marketing with a minor in Communications at Midland University in Fremont, NE, this fall.
Joining Cawley at the SEOPA conference will be the two Toyota “Let’s Go Places” award winners, Christy Sweigart and Abby Jackley.
Sweigart has a B.S. in Natural Resource Tourism and a minor in Business Administration from Colorado State University in Fort Collins. She is currently an intern with Delta Waterfowl where she puts her marketing, organizational, and communications skills to good use. SEOPA member Bill Miller, who recommended Sweigart for a scholarship, said, “Christy’s growing passion for the outdoors, wildlife, hunting and communicating the outdoor experience reminds me of my own – a longer time ago than I care to remember. Her enthusiasm and inquisitive nature are infectious.” Sweigart is also an excellent writer. Her application read, “I want to inspire. I want to inform. I want to motivate. I want to connect. If there are two things in this life that could be labeled as transformative, it is simple – the great outdoors and the written word.”

Abby Jackley, a high school junior from Wisconsin, is a competitive action shooter who only recently has stepped into the outdoor space. This year Jackley claimed the SASP Wisconsin State Ladies High Overall 1911 trophy, topping her 2020 2nd place finish in the Ladies JV 1911 division at SASP Nationals. Like Cawley, Jackley shares her experiences as a contributor to Junior Shooters Magazine and looks forward to expanding her knowledge of the outdoor industry. Of the Let’s Go Places award opportunity Jackley said, “I hope to gain new ideas and explore possible career opportunities that are available in the outdoor communication industry and get a feel for how things work. I hope meeting with new people will open doors to potential internships in the future.”

Curt McAllister, Midwest Public Relations Manager for Toyota Motor North America said, “These two winners epitomize the type of recipients we originally envisioned for our scholarship program. Based on their backgrounds, drive, and enthusiasm for the outdoors, Sweigart and Jackley are going places, and we look forward to hosting them at the SEOPA conference this fall.”
Due to the postponement of the 2020 SEOPA Conference, 2020 Lindsay Sale-Tinney Award recipient Ricky “Devin” Kidd will attend the gathering in Southern West Virginia as well.

SEOPA Executive Director and OJEFA CEO Lisa Snuggs said, “Helping to bring aspiring young communicators together with seasoned professionals is one of the most rewarding parts of my job. ‘Cawley, Sweigart, Jackley, and Kidd’ might sound like the name of a law firm to some, but to me, it sounds like a glimpse into the future of outdoors communications.”

About the Lindsay Sale-Tinney Award
Presented by the Outdoor Journalist Education Foundation of America (OJEFA), the Lindsay Sale-Tinney Award provides an aspiring young outdoors communicator with a scholarship to attend the annual conference of the Southeastern Outdoor Press Association (SEOPA). The scholarship includes conference registration, lodging, and travel to the conference to meet industry professionals, enjoy seminars, outdoor excursions, and networking, all in an effort to learn more about options for a career in outdoor communications.

Stu Tinney, founder of the original Striper magazine and tournament series, is the benefactor of the Lindsay Sale-Tinney Award. His donation of $25,000 at the 2013 conference is restricted for the purpose of providing this conference scholarship. Tinney established the award to honor his late wife, Lindsay Sale-Tinney, who was passionate about the outdoors, animals, children, photography, and education.

To learn more about the Lindsay Sale-Tinney award, please watch a short video produced by the 2012 recipient Josh Honeycutt at Lindsay Sale-Tinney Award.

About SEOPA: The Southeastern Outdoor Press Association, Inc., is dedicated to helping outdoor communicators and allied industry representatives excel in their professions. For more information visit SEOPA.org.

About OJEFA: The Outdoor Journalist Education Foundation of America, Inc. is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization established by the Southeastern Outdoor Press Association in 2004 to further education, research, and network opportunities in the field of outdoor journalism for students, active outdoor journalists, and outdoor journalist organizations. For more information visit OJEFA.

Contact: Lisa Snuggs, SEOPA Executive Director/ OJEFA CEO [email protected], 704-961-7614.