In 2005, Crosman Corporation established the Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award, "to recognize an individual whose commitment to excellence in youth shooter education and dedication to a lifetime of safe shooting have enhanced the future of the sport."

Claudia Olsen | winner 2013



Claudia Olsen, the National Rifle Association's Youth Programs Coordinator, the arm of the NRA that reaches the hundreds of thousands of young people being introduced to the shooting lifestyle, has won the prestigious 2013 Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Award. Directing the NRA's youth programs and working cooperatively with many other groups that foster shooting for young people, Olsen has created a foundation for making shooting sports exciting for the next generation. Her success is evident in the number of young people entering the sport and in the enthusiasm they bring with them. The Award was presented last night at the 2013 Crosman Corporation International Reception at SHOT Show in Las Vegas, Nevada.

According to Phil Dolci, Crosman president and CEO, Claudia Olsen typifies the lifetime commitment to shooting celebrated by the Award. "At a time when shooting's popularity is growing, we need the support of people like Claudia Olsen to chart a smart course for young people as they enter the sport for life," he said. "Though there are countless contributors to the growth of shooting, Claudia manages the many initiatives that make shooting available and appealing to hundreds of thousands of young people from coast-to-coast. She sets the standards, creates the messages, coordinates the activities of countless shooting events and makes sure that each youth shooting experience is positive, safe and leads to a lifelong love of the sport. Her contributions, both past and present, and her attitude of inclusion are what the Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Award is all about," he said.

Claudia Olsen began her life in shooting in Germany as part of a military family. Her mother was a Bavarian airgun champion and taught Claudia the ins and outs of airgunning. Then came children of her own, both of whom showed an interest in shooting. She and her children became involved in the Virginia 4H shooting program, where Olsen became an instructor for rifle, shotgun and muzzle loader. In 2004, she attended the Running Target Coach School at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs and the rest is history. In 2008, she became the program coordinator of the NRA's Youth Programs Department where today she reaches upwards of 750,000 youngsters annually.

As the NRA's Youth Programs Department Coordinator, she creates teaching materials in print and on-line, organizes countless shooting events for use by organizations including, among others, the National High School Rodeo Association, the 4H Clubs of America, the Home School Association, the Boy Scouts and Girls Scouts of America, Safari Club International, FFA and American Heritage Girls from coast-to-coast. The events are frequently both teaching and competitive affairs, all of which impart the love that she has for shooting as a lifetime sport.

A program that Olsen's particularly proud of is the Brownells/NRA Youth Shooting Sports Ambassador Program. In fact, her own daughter, Samantha, was the program?s very first Ambassador. The program accepts young people from participating youth organization partners, and takes them to major industry events, including the SHOT Show and the NRA?s Annual Meeting. The program?s intent is to provide perspective on the shooting industry for the ambassadors and encourages them to share those experiences with other young people. The Ambassador Program has been highly successful as a recruiting tool and is being used as a template by other groups as they work to grow the shooting sports. Claudia, a contributor to NRA Insights magazine, the publication that serves young shooters, writes about the Ambassador program?s success in telling the shooting sports' story to the next generation of shooters.

According to Dolci, Claudia Olsen is a precious asset to shooting. "Being one of shooting?s most avid supporters is only part of what Claudia brings to our sport. Her dedication to making shooting for life a reality is what sets her apart. She is, indeed, shooting's "mom-in-chief" and certainly deserving of a place on the Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Award Roster. We congratulate her and thank her for making the future of shooting sports richer, thanks to the legion of new shooters she has helped to create," he said.

Jack and Marlene Duncan | winner 2012



Retired Master Chief Gunner's Mate (U.S. Navy Underwater Demolition Technician/Frogman) Jack Duncan, and his wife Marlene, two of the most successful and prolific shooting instructors and coaches in the country, have won the prestigious 2012 Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award. Following Master Chief Duncan's 43-year military career and marriage to Marlene, they set the standard for dedication and commitment to a lifetime of shooting for thousands of young shooters and their coaches. By dedicating more than 40 years of their lives to teaching the skills necessary to enjoy shooting as a lifetime sport, winning this award establishes them as models for the next generation of shooting teachers and coaches. The Award was presented last night at the 2012 Crosman Corporation International Reception at SHOT Show in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The annual Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award recognizes:

"An individual or individuals whose commitment to excellence in youth shooter education and dedication to a lifetime of safe shooting has enhanced the future of the sport."

According to Ken D'Arcy, Crosman president and CEO, Jack and Marlene Duncan embody the lifetime commitment to shooting celebrated by the Award. "It isn't often that a couple complements one another as well as the Duncans do in their individual and collective contributions to our sport. They have raised the bar for all of us and for their young shooters in staying engaged with shooting's future. Jack's Naval discipline and Marlene's insistence on nothing less than excellent technique in competitive shooting set them apart from the thousands of shooting's dedicated contributors," he said. "It is because of people like the Duncans that our sport continues as one of the most popular of all youth activities. The Duncans' lifelong contribution to shooting is what the Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award was established to celebrate," he said.

"Our future is young people. If shooting is to continue as a leading participant sport, we must engage and retain young shooters," said D'Arcy. "This year's Award winners are the embodiment of that imperative. They inspire young shooters to achieve their potential by reaching beyond their grasp. Master Chief Jack Duncan and his wife Marlene are more than worthy recipients of our Award. They are the bellwether for shooting's future and we need more champions like them." he said.

Master Chief Gunner's Mate Jack Duncan began shooting his .22 at nine years old. It was the beginning of a competitive shooting career that spanned high school, scouting, 43 years in the Navy, post-military competition, and a long tenure of teaching and coaching. He became a certified NRA rifle instructor in 1957 and 10 years later, became an NRA instructor trainer. In 1971, he married Marlene, his wife of 40-years. She was a newcomer to shooting, but, in time, became fascinated with the NRA Shooting Sports Sciences program and became a certified coach in multiple disciplines. She too became an NRA instructor trainer and, together, the Duncans have team-trained more than 3,000 shooting instructors.

When the Junior Olympic Shooting Program came about, Jack and Marlene were at the forefront of designing the training and coaching protocols for young shooters. Based on their winning under the Duncan's coaching, a number of their students won athletic scholarships to the US military and naval academies at West Point and Annapolis, SUNY Maritime and the University of San Francisco, among others.

The Duncans later formed a new rifle program and trained the members of the San Diego Unit of the Naval Reserve Training Corps Rifle and Pistol Team. The Navy Junior ROTC airgun program at Serra High School was their next triumph. They took the school's formerly last place rifle team to an undefeated season – first in the league – in only one year. Their contributions to the many organizations they helped continued until their retirement in 2010.

Says D'Arcy, "The Duncans have done more to ensure shooting's future than any couple I've encountered in our sport. They are genuine friends of youth shooting and we applaud their spirit and their charisma. From the Navy, to the communities where they've lived, to the organizations they've made more shooting friendly, we congratulate them on winning the Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award and on their lifetime of giving back to our sport. We're proud to add their names to the Award's roster."

Kenyon Simpson | winner 2011



Kenyon Simpson, shooting's consummate teacher, has won the 2011 Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award. By dedicating more than 30 years of his life to teaching the value of shooting as a lifetime sport, his commitment to young people's learning and safety has established him as the model for shooting's teacher and coach. The Award was presented last night at the 2011 Crosman Corporation SHOT Show International Reception in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The annual Award recognizes:

"An individual or organization whose commitment to excellence in youth shooter education and dedication to a lifetime of safe shooting has enhanced the future of the sport."

According to Ken D'Arcy, Crosman's president and CEO, Kenyon Simpson embodies the lifetime commitment to shooting celebrated by the award. "There are thousands of dedicated people who give of themselves to encourage the younger generation to embrace shooting as a lifetime activity. Kenyon Simpson has been working alongside youth, both in the classroom and in the field since he was a child at his father's side. His distinctive style in passing on shooting's message to young people is what makes him such a special contributor to our sport," he said.

"The key to growing our sport and maintaining it as a vital element in recreation, is engaging new enthusiasts," said D'Arcy. "We must always remember that in shooting, young people are our future. By fostering resources to encourage and retain our younger generation, Kenyon Simpson is more than an inspiration, he's one of a kind," he said.

Boy Scouts of America | winner 2010

For the first time in its six-year history, the 2010 Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award was won by an organization rather than an individual. The Boy Scouts of America (BSA), celebrating its centennial this year and long known as the point-of-entry into shooting for hundreds of thousands of young people, has won the prestigious Award. It was presented tonight at the 2010 Crosman Corporation SHOT Show International Reception in Las Vegas, Nevada.

"An organization or individual whose commitment to excellence in youth shooter education and dedication to a lifetime of safe shooting has enhanced the future of the sport."

According to Ken D'Arcy, Crosman's president and CEO, The Boy Scouts of America has touched the lives of more young shooters than almost any organization engaged with shooting today. "The key to growing our sport and maintaining it as a vital element in recreation is engaging new enthusiasts," he said. "In shooting, young people are our future. We must all be mindful of that fact and foster the resources that encourage and retain young people in the sport of shooting.

"Scouting does just that. The thousands of dedicated staff and volunteers teach new generations of young people a love and respect for shooting, which builds a healthy future for both the industry and for our sport," he said. "For 100 years, The Boy Scouts of America have been an active participant in training and honing the skills of eager young shooters ready to adopt shooting as a lifetime sport. There are few organizations more engaged with our sport today," said D'Arcy.

"Scouting continues to make a significant impact on the future of the sport and the BSA is a most deserving recipient of the 2010 Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award. We welcome The Boy Scouts of America to Crosman's roster of Award winners," he concluded.

Commenting on the Award, BSA Chief Scout Executive Robert Mazzuca expressed his appreciation. "The Boy Scouts of America's goal is to instill values in young people that prepare them to be responsible citizens. An important part of that process is teaching an appreciation and understanding of a variety of hobbies and skills through the merit badge program. In addition to a variety of other shooting programs, through our shooting merit badges alone, more than 1.3 million Scouts have gained the knowledge, skills, and discipline necessary to safely enjoy the sport."

According to Mazzuca, "Scout leaders understand that young people have a natural curiosity about guns. We want to provide Scouts with an environment where they can learn proper gun safety and become familiar with the different recreational opportunities available to people who enjoy shooting as a sport," he said. "We thank Crosman for recognizing our success in educating young people about gun safety and adopting the shooting sports for a lifetime."

About BSA Shooting Programs - The Boy Scouts of America adheres to its longstanding policy of teaching its youth and adult members the safe, responsible, intelligent handling, care and use of firearms, airguns, and BB guns in planned, carefully managed, and supervised programs. These programs are designed to emphasize safety and marksmanship under the direction of trained range officers using nationally approved instructional methods. Shooting teaches skills, discipline, self-reliance, sportsmanship, and conservation, all of which are elements of good character. For more information about Scouting, visit www.scouting.org.

Deborah Lyman | winner 2009

In 2005, Crosman Corporation established the Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award, "to recognize an individual whose commitment to excellence in youth shooter education and dedication to a lifetime of safe shooting have enhanced the future of the sport." Deborah Lyman has won the 2009 Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Award to be presented at the 2009 SHOT Show Reception in Orlando, Florida, on Friday January 16, 2009.

Deborah Lyman has spent her life shooting, both competitively and recreationally, as well as hunting and teaching. However, it is her teaching and dedication to youth education that makes her the recipient of this year's Champions of Youth Marksmanship Award. As a champion shooter in both smallbore and three position rifle shooting and a member of several national US teams, Deborah has the skill to educate shooters; she is also a Certified Master Hunter Safety Instructor. Lyman has also lectured on the psychology and mental training of shooting. In the end, however, it is her love of children and helping them succeed that drives her.

Dr. Kenneth Sabo | winner 2008

Ken Sabo is known for his lifelong dedication to creating programs that teach safe and enjoyable shooting on to the next generation of enthusiasts. It is because of this dedication that he was awarded the Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award. Candidates for this year's Award included many outstanding shooting supporters from a variety of groups, all dedicated to recruiting and retaining young shooters. Sabo was one of three finalists chosen from a broad group of qualified candidates by a committee of his peers.

According to Ken D'Arcy, Crosman Corporation president and CEO, Dr. Kenneth Sabo has touched the lives of more young shooters, particularly in the 4H Clubs of America, than almost any person involved in shooter education today. "The key to growing our sport and maintaining it as a vital element in recreation is recruiting and motivating new blood.

In shooting, young people are our future. We must all be mindful of the fact that a sport that's not growing is in danger of regressing. Keeping the pipeline full must be a high priority for everyone involved in building both the industry and the sport.

Dr. Kenneth Sabo has been preparing young people for a lifetime of safe, enjoyable shooting for more than three decades. He has created programs, helped to train instructors and coaches and architected fundraising to support the sport. Dr. Sabo is a professional educator with a passion for shooting. There are few people involved in our sport today who have made as significant an impact on its future. He is a most deserving recipient of the 2008 Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award."

Since earning his doctorate in education from Arizona State University in 1973, Dr. Sabo has been involved in promoting shooting and shooter education. His first post was as an employee in the University's state 4H office in Tucson. When he was assigned to conduct an outdoor camping and conservation camp for the 4H Youth Development Program, he added an airgun event the very first year. It was the first of many shooting opportunities he incorporated into 4H programs during many years of work with both national and state programs.

After 10 years of dedicated work, Dr. Sabo recognized the need for more funding and founded a fundraising arm for the National 4H Shooting Sports program, the 4H National Shooting Sports Foundation. He served as its executive director for seven years. During that time, he organized the first National 4H Shooting Sports competitive event, serving as its director for the first two years. In 2003, he hosted the National 4H Shooting Sports Workshop to help recruit and train the next generation of 4H shooting leaders.

But perhaps Sabo's greatest legacy, according to Crosman President D'Arcy, is his dedication to instilling a respect for safe shooting and building youngsters' self-esteem through achievement. "If effectively motivating young people to appreciate the shooting lifestyle is the key to building our sport, then Dr. Kenneth Sabo is one of the most dedicated, hardworking mentors we've got. The 4H Clubs of America, the industry and our sport are all fortunate to have him as an example to emulate."

Dr. William Christy | winner 2007

Dr. William Christy, known for his lifelong dedication to creating programs that help introduce shooting to young people all over the country, has won the third annual Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award. The Award, presented at the annual Crosman Corporation Reception at the 2007 SHOT Show in Orlando, Florida, on Friday, January 12th, 2007, recognizes an individual whose commitment to excellence in youth shooter education and dedication to a lifetime of safe shooting has enhanced the future of the sport.

According to Ken D'Arcy, Crosman Corporation president and CEO, Dr. William Christy has touched the lives of more young shooters than almost any person involved in shooter education today. "The key to growth in any sport is recruiting and motivating new blood. In shooting, young people represent the future. They must be a high priority for everyone involved in building both the industry and the sport. "Dr. William Christy has been involved in preparing young people for a lifetime of safe, enjoyable shooting for many years. He has created programs, helped to train instructors and coaches, enhanced the competitive environment for young shooters and has been a lifelong champion of getting young people involved in shooting, regardless of their background or ability, as a true lifetime sport. I can think of few people involved in our sport today who have made as significant an impact on its future. He is a most deserving recipient of the third annual Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award."

In 1988, he opened a full-time shooting sports consulting practice, serving a number of prominent organizations and corporations with a wide range of services. L.L. Bean, Federal Cartridge Company, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, National 4-H Shooting Sports Foundation, National Shooting Sports Foundation and Boy Scouts of America are among his prestigious clients. He has authored a monthly column in Hunter Education Journal and one in Trap & Field magazine, and is a life member of NRA, serving in numerous coaching and instructor capacities. He served on the National Outdoor Committee of the Venturing Program of Boy Scouts of America, works as a consultant for the National Shooting Sports Foundation and helped introduce young shooters to the American disciplines of trap, skeet and sporting clays at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.

Most recently, Christy authored the National Shooting Sports strategic plan focused on youth shooting sports. The plan is designed to develop entry points and pathways for young shooters to become active in shooting and stick with it as a lifetime sport. But perhaps Christy's greatest legacy, according to Crosman President D'Arcy, is his dedication to instilling a respect for safe shooting and building youngsters' self-esteem through achievement, regardless of their skill level, life background or physical challenges. "If effectively delivering those messages to young people is the key to building our sport, then Dr. William Christy is one of the most skilled and dedicated messengers we've got.The industry is fortunate to have him."

Jim Smith | winner 2006

Jim Smith, known for his lifelong dedication to creating programs for numerous groups that help introduce target shooting to young people all over the country, won the second annual Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award presented at the 2006 SHOT Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Friday, February 10th, 2006.

In making the Award, Crosman president and CEO, Ken D’Arcy said, “Jim Smith has touched the lives of more young shooters than almost any person involved in shooter education today. In shooting, young people represent the future. They must be a key element in the future for everyone involved in building both the industry and the sport.

“Jim Smith has been involved in preparing young people for a lifetime of safe, enjoyable shooting for more than four decades. He has created programs, helped to train instructors and coaches, enhanced the competitive environment for young shooters and has been a lifelong champion of getting young people involved in shooting as a lifetime sport. I can think of no person involved in our sport today who has made as significant an impact on its future. He is a most deserving recipient of the second Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award.”

For many years Jim Smith has been a consultant to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) in its youth development division. During that time, he played a key role in developing and promoting youth shooting opportunities for youngsters of all ages.

This year’s Award winner has been a lifetime member of the shooting industry, having worked for well known companies such as Hornady, Savage Arms and Thompson Center Arms. He has served as a volunteer for numerous organizations, including the Boy Scouts of America, BSA’s Philmont Scout Ranch, Buffalo Trails Scout Camp, BSA’s Venturing Program, the USA Shooting Junior Olympic Development Program, the YMCA, the International Hunter Education Association, the National Muzzle Loading Rifle Association, the NRA, the National Skeet Shooting Association, the 4-H Clubs of America and the Cimarron Kiwanis Club. He is a member of the BSA Venturing Shooting Sports National Committee and has served on the National 4-H Shooting Sports Board as well.

But perhaps Smith’s greatest legacy, according to Crosman President Ken D’Arcy, is his dedication to instilling a respect for safe shooting and the building self-esteem through competition. “If delivering those messages is the key to building our sport, then Jim Smith is one of the most dedicated messengers we’ve got. He is one of a kind. The industry could use a dozen more like him.”

Bob Soldivera | winner 2005

Bob Soldivera, known as the instructor’s instructor and a fixture in the community of senior shooting professionals, responsible for introducing shooting to young people all over the country, won the first annual Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award, presented at the 2005 Shot Show in Las Vegas on Saturday, January 29th, 2005.

In presenting the Award, Crosman president and CEO, Ken D’Arcy said, “The key to growth in any sport is recruiting new blood. In shooting, young people represent the future. They must be a high priority for everyone involved in building both the industry and the sport.

“Bob Soldivera has been involved in preparing young people for a lifetime of safe, enjoyable shooting for more than four decades. He has written manuals, helped to author standards for teaching all aspects of shooting, taught and qualified countless instructors, been a prolific writer on a wide range of shooting and hunting subjects and has been a lifelong champion of getting young people involved in shooting. I can think of no other person involved in our sport who has made as significant or far reaching an impact on the future we all seek for shooting as a lifetime sport. He is a deserving recipient of the first Crosman Champions of Youth Marksmanship Shooting Award.”

Among his most important youth shooting credits, he has been the senior activity manager for shooting for the 1993, 1997 and 2001 National Scout Jamborees. At these national events, more than a quarter of a million young people were introduced to safe shooting under his watchful eye. Solidvera is also a well-known competitive shooting coach. Author of many manuals and shooting standards, including the preparatory check list for the competitive shooter, “Ready on The Firing Line, “ Solidvera’s tips on how to get and stay on-target are legendary.

In 1987, Soldivera joined Crosman as a shooting services consultant. Among the many innovations he has created during his tenure are the BSA Bikathon, a sport involving cycling and shooting, much like the Olympic biathlon, a staple of the BSA National Jamboree. He also designed a speed shooting target system, mentored countless young people in both competitive and recreational shooting and helped establish Crosman as the resource for young people’s shooter information.

The Crosman EASY program, partially architected by Soldivera, provides both information and equipment to youth groups across the country, making it less expensive and more efficient to set up shooting programs for young people.

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