El Jefe

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For a person who doesn’t like to be told what to do, I certainly have a lot of bosses.

There are various levels of supervisory bureaucracy at my day job. On top of that, each publication to which I contribute, as well each industry member for whom I consult, has a person who tells me what to do and how to do it.

At some of these jobs and endeavors, there are multiple bosses. For example, for my work with BASS I’ve taken direction from higher-ups including Dave Precht, James Hall, Bryan Brasher, Steve Bowman, Thomas Allen and Jim Sexton. They’ve all been really good to me, helping me to fit into a corporate structure in which I am not a day-to-day cog.

Of all of the fishing-related bosses I’ve worked with, though, Billy Chapman stands apart, a true one of a kind individual. The Head Queso at Anglers Inn is a whirling dervish of an ideas man, a strong personality and an eternal optimist. If you’ve been to one of his properties, you know that everything runs smoothly, the “Anglers Inn Way,” with no creature comfort or guest request denied. If you haven’t been to one of his properties, and you like fishing and good service, you owe it to yourself to go.

I’ve been in this industry for well over a decade now, and while I’ve worked with and for some great folks, I can honestly say that none can match Billy’s generosity of spirit. I’ve known lots of people to overpromise and underdeliver, but he’s exactly the opposite – 10 times out of 10 he comes through with more than he promised. It’s a rare quality in a human being in any business. He also consistently amazes me with the scope of his ambitions. As a practicing attorney, risk management and caution are operative phrases in my life. Billy has no such governors on his emotions or his desires. If there’s something he wants to do, he wants to do it bigger and better than anyone else….and he usually ends up exceeding even his own plans.

Although I had visited Anglers Inn El Salto in 2009, it was not until I met Billy in the airport in Brazil three years later that I first spoke to him. That happenstance greeting spawned not only one of the most satisfying working relationships of my life, but also a great friendship with an amazing mentor.

I am thrilled by the opportunities that he’s already provided me, and I look forward to seeing what he comes up with next.