The Renzetti Ambassador Team has lost two great tiers, and equally great people, in recent years. Lefty Kreh and Oscar Feliu will always be a part of the team. The sport of fly fishing and tying will miss their contributions.
A program committed to teach, inspire and grow the art of fly tying. Andy Renzetti has been surrounded and inspired by legendary anglers all his life. From casual conversation to research and development, many of these anglers have encouraged and inspired him to make the best possible products for anglers. His vision is that a group of talented, passionate and innovator anglers will do the same for many around the globe. Our goal is to Teach, Grow and Inspire anglers to perpetuate the art of fly tying.
Besides being a member of the Renzetti Legacy Tying Team, Bob Popovics is the founder of the Atlantic Salt Water Flyrodders, associated with Tibor Reels, and a Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame and Catskill Fly Fishing Museum Hall of Fame inductee. Though he has refined his fishing techniques and casting skills by traveling around the world, Bob is perhaps best known as a designer of flies (or fleyes as they are called) and as a teacher.
Starting with his famous Surf Candy pattern in the 1970s, Bob’s innovative fly tying concepts helped pave the way for modern day saltwater fly fishing in the Northeast. His epoxy and silicone flies were the first of their kind, and anglers and tiers around the world continue to tie, fish, modify, and study Bob’s creations, many of which were introduced by his bestselling 2001 book, Pop Fleyes, co-authored with Ed Jaworowski. A patient teacher, Bob has helped countless tiers and anglers through his seminars, videos, and writing.
Bob’s love of the outdoors, especially fishing, led him into the fishing business. He continues to teach and share his enjoyment with others.
Bob is also a prolific and highly regarded author of flyfishing and fly tying articles. His articles have been published in national and regional magazines as well as in fresh and saltwater Clouser is the innovator of many fine fly patterns, all of which gained worldwide popularity. His flies include The Clouser Minnow, The Half and half, Clouser Crayfish, Swimming Nymph, Crippled Minnow, Mad tom, The Darter, Hellgrammite, E-Z popper, Floating Minnow Precision Frog and many others. Bob’s Clouser Minnow is claimed to be the most effective underwater fly ever developed; rated as #1 by Field and Stream Magazine. He is on the advisory staff for Temple Fork Outfitters and has designed a line of(Clouser Fly Rods). He is also on the staff of Rainy’s Flies Inc. Chota Outdoor Gear, Renzetti Inc. Sciantific Anglers Line Co,Partridge Hooks and an affiliate with Hareline Dubbing.
Through his life, Bob has been presented numerous awards for his strong conservation work, especially work done to enhance smallmouth bass fishing in Pennsylvania. Most notable among his awards are his induction into the national Fresh Water Fishing Hall of fame as Legendary Angler. In 2009 he was inducted into the Catskill Fly Fishing Hall of Fame, the Warm Water Committee Achievement Award, a national award presented by The Federation of Fly Fishers, the Dr. Henshall Award presented by The federation of Fly Fishers, and National Angler of the Year 2000 by Fly Rod and Reel Magazine. He is a strong supporter of recreational fishing as well as conservation. He was awarded the 1995 Conservation Award of The Year presented by the Susquehanna Smallmouth Alliance, and in 1997 the Charles K. Fox Rising Trout Conservation Award presented by the Cumberland Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited. He is also inducted into the Pennsylvania Fly Fishing Museum.
Another Jersey boy, Steve is a self taught fly angler who fishes the surf of Sandy Hook, NJ. He is an accomplished fly tyer and innovator of numerous patterns and techniques. Steve’s work has been published in several of the leading saltwater fly fishing magazines and Journals. He is the originator of “Steve Farrar’s SF Flash Blend” marketed and produced by JUST ADD H2O Products and the Fishient Group. Steve taught at numerous fly fishing clubs demonstrating his patterns and sharing his local knowledge. He has produced several instructional videos(thanks to the tutelage of Bob Popovics) on fishing local waters and tying patterns effective on a variety of species. Steve is a past president of the Atlantic Saltwater Flyrodders and led the fly tying classes there for a number of years.
Capt. Pat Ehlers lives in Franklin, WI. He opened his fly shop, The Fly Fishers Inc. in 1988, and has guided throughout Wisconsin and the Great Lakes as well as in Montana and Alaska. A licensed United States Coast Guard Captain, Pat has taught fly-fishing schools, fly-casting and fly tying classes around the country, and also appears as a speaker and instructor at shows and seminars throughout the U.S.
Pat is a member of the Echo Fly Rod Co. Design Team (Vancouver, WA), a contract /royalty fly tierconsultant for Rainy’s Flies, a fly tying tools designer for the Renzetti, a Technical Consultant and Advisor to Simms Fishing Products, and a member of Smith Optics Fishing Ambassador program. Pat also is a tackle consultant and trip host for Frontiers Travel as well as his shop, The Fly Fishers being Frontiers official tackle vendor.
Pat has appeared in newspaper and magazine articles, makes regular appearances on radio programs and has also appeared on numerous TV shows throughout the country; both regionally and nationally including Fox, ESPN and The Outdoor Channel networks. The DVD, Tying the Flies of Pat Ehlers – Bass Flies is a product of Pat’s and the production company he is a partner in, Four Reels Player Productions. He is a regular contributor to Northwest Fly Fishing Magazine that includes the Eastern and Southwestern Fly Fishing editions and has written for other publications along with having contributed to a number of books. Photography is also one of his pursuits and lends itself very well to his business.
Pat participates in local and regional bass tournaments as well as “fly only” bass tourneys in the western United States. He also fishes extensively for saltwater species. In chasing both fresh and saltwater fish his fishing has taken him across the US from Alaska to Florida, as well as Canada, Mexico, the Bahamas, Central America, South America and the South Pacific.
For the past 30 years, Blane has lived his passion. Blane Chocklett began fly fishing in 1985 on a small mountain stream not far from his home in Blue Ridge, Virginia. Eight years later, he started his own freelance guide service. In 1996, Blane opened Blue Ridge Fly Fishers, a full-service fly shop located in Roanoke, Virginia. About a decade ago, he returned to his river roots as owner/operator of the New Angle Fishing Company, specializing in float trips targeting the regions predatory fish including Musky, Stripers, Smallmouth Bass and Trout.
One the most enthusiastic and cutting-edge fly tiers in our sport, many of Blane’s inventive fly patterns are produced through UMPQUA Feather Merchants. He has served on the board of the American Fly Tackle Trade Association (AFFTA) and has worked as a consultant/ambassador to several fly fishing companies including Yeti Coolers, Temple Fork Outfitters, Scientific Anglers, Patagonia, Costa Del Mar Sunglasses, Fishpond USA, Renzetti/RD Distribution, Flymen Fishing Company, Hedron Flashabou, Hareline Dubbing, Hyde Drift Boats, Towee Boatworks, and Hog Island Boatworks.
Jon is a Sage Ambassador, RIO Ambassador, and Renzetti Legacy Tyer who has an M.S. Degree in Natural Resources with special concentration in fisheries and water resources. He spent over 25 years as a fly-fishing guide and is the founder/owner of the longest established fly-fishing school in the South and the U.S. His articles, casting tips, columns, and photos have been featured in many fly-fishing publications.
Furthermore, he is the author of two books: Performance Fly-Casting; and Flyfishing Odyssey, The Pursuit of Great Gamefish. He’s also contributed to several anthologies including Gray Ghosts and Lefty’s Deceivers, Fly-Fishing Wisdom from the Masters, and Feather Brain. The results of his research on hooking mortalities have been published in several prestigious journals including Progressive Fish Culturist, Journal of Freshwater Ecology, and the textbook Centrarchid Fishes. He created the popular Rattler Fly Pattern and his ground-breaking Wobbler Spoon-Fly is exhibited in the American Museum of Fly-Fishing as the forerunner of all spoon-flies. Jon is only one of a handful of individuals to be honored with the prestigious IFFF Silver King Award for his contributions to saltwater fly-fishing. He currently serves on the advisory council for the ASMFC and has served on the IFFF Casting Board of Governors.
The Renzetti Ambassadors, like our Legacy Tiers, are as passionate and innovators about teaching and promoting the art of timing at a regional level.
Chris is a saltwater fly tier located in Central Florida. During his tenure as a commercial tier he was best known for his tarpon patterns. His patterns have been published in several tying books and magazines. He no longer ties commercially but enjoys sharing fly tying with others and promoting the sport.
Chris promotes fly fishing around the south as a tying demonstrator at several events, including IFTD/ICAST.
Growing up in South Africa, Christiaan was introduced to fly fishing by his father. At the age of 14, he began representing his country on the competitive fly fishing circuit. He have since represented my country at 7 world fly fishing championship events all over the world. Competitive fly fishing has led Christiaan to some of the most amazing places in the world, including Portugal, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Norway, Italy, America and Russia.
He has since guided full time on the mighty Zambezi River for Tigerfish, also doing the annual season for largemouth and smallmouth yellow fish. Most recently, Christiaan has spent the last four years guiding in Kamchatka, and joined the team at The Fly Shop as a travel ambassador.
Dave is a professional fly tyer & fly designer and a Renzetti Ambassador. He is a National and International award winning fly tyer. For more than 2 decades Dave was a regular in the tying aisles at the Fly Fishing Shows, The International Fly Fishing Show and The International Fly Tying Symposium at times as a featured tyer. Dave has also participated in a number IFFF Conclaves and FFI Florida Council Fly Fishing Expos. He is known for some of his unique and innovative patterns, tying techniques and philosophy on tying. Dave moved to Volusia County FL from the Laurel Highlands of
Pennsylvania where, for many years, he did tying demos, taught fly tying classes at fly shops, clubs, schools, and at home. Although he continues this, and commercial tying in Florida, a large portion of his time is devoted to developing new Saltwater patterns using synthetic materials.
Ron was raised on Florida’s central east coast in a small community known as Indialantic. His family moved to Florida from Georgia when he was in first grade in 1957. His mother worked for Lockheed and was transferred to work on their Polaris missile program at Cape Canaveral.
Indialantic is located on a barrier island and the waters of the Atlantic were just a few blocks to the east and to the west, thru the woods the Indian River lagoon. Whether fishing, swimming or surfing the water was it. In the late 60’s and early 70’s he worked on a commercial kingfish boat and learned a lot about bait design. It was here he was introduced to polypropylene as a durable colorful material, a product that was ideal for streamers when a few years later he got into fly fishing and tying. He is noted for his knowledge and experience in fly fishing the surf.
Born and raised in Michigan, Matt grew up in a fishing family that spent countless hours on the water. His love for fly fishing and tying became stronger in his late teens, especially fishing and tying large flies. While he pursues many species, muskies hold a special place in his heart and this is what he often spends his time chasing.
Matt ties flies commercially for Adaptive Fly, and at several tying events a year. He enjoys teaching his patterns, some of which are heavily inspired by others on the Renzetti team.
As a native to Colorado, Caley was lucky enough to become obsessed with the outdoors from a very young age. Her dad put a fly rod in her hand by the age of 5 and she hasn’t put them down since. After moving from her hometown south of Denver to Fort Collins to attend Colorado State University for fishery biology, she was spending every daylight hour outside of class on the local waters. She scored a job at the local fly shop and fly fishing officially consumed all aspects of her life.
After 4 years of grinding in the fly shop, starting her guiding career, tying copious amounts of flies, and putting more species under her belt, she decided it was time to take a leap down to to Florida where she could commit her life to the saltwater world as a local, not a tourist. Completely out of her comfort zone, she found a job running R Distribution at Renzetti, and started committing her time to tying shrimp, crabs, and baitfish for her trips to the water after work and on the weekends. She loves connecting with anglers of any skill level far and wide so if if you feel so inclined, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
Justin Pribanic has been working in the fly fishing industry for over 12 years. During the course of his time pursuing his passion, he has work for numerous shops from Massachusetts to Michigan. He has also guided for multiple different species including striped bass, false albacore, trout, smallmouth and steelhead.
His tying influences come from a wide range with Bob Popovics, Dave Skok and Blane Chocklett being a big part. When not on the road guiding, Justin can be found in Western Pennsylvania tying commercially.
Bob is a full time Jr. High Science teacher and coach in Cheyenne, Wyoming, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and a Master’s Degree in Natural Sciences. He runs a fly fishing club for 7th and 8th grade students at his school. In addition to this, Bob works with Platte Rivers Veterans Fly Fishing. During the summers he runs his own guide operation on the private waters of Horse Creek Ranch in Southeast Wyoming. Bob is a Field Editor for Fly Fusion Magazine and writes multiple monthly posts for Gink & Gasoline. He credits his loving mom, also a teacher, who emphasized and nurtured his creativity from a young age. It was his Dad who taught him how to tie flies and cast a rod at the age of twelve. His science background and love of God’s creation, fuels his desire to construct highly productive fly patterns. Most importantly, he has been blessed with the support of his amazing wife as he works toward his fly tying goals. All of these factors combined, have led Bob to where he is now a Signature Fly Designer for Umpqua Feather Merchants, and Renzetti ambassador.
Josh was born and raised in the Lowcountry of South Carolina. Fishing and hunting was an inherited passion; and while he dabbled with lots of hobbies and pastimes while growing up, no others stuck. During his teenage years, Josh started working as a mate on offshore boats. His years of offshore fishing were great, and he learned so much from so many great fishermen. However, his true love was always the beautiful inshore marshes of the Lowcountry. So Josh decided to trade the bluewater for the backcountry and start his own guide service. A few years after starting the guide business, Josh had a unique opportunity to re-open the local fly shop. So for the next eight years he ran the fly shop, chartered on the side and hosted as many fly fishing trips as he could. He eventually sold the fly shop to focus exclusively on family and fishing.
It’s been two decades since Josh started in the fishing industry and every year gets better. He gets as many fishing days as anyone could ask for, works along side great companies and great people, and gets to share what I love with hundreds of clients each year.
John and Katie Demuth
John and Katie reside near the beautiful rivers of East Tennessee where they spend their free time fly fishing, tying, and photographing flies. They both have always enjoyed the outdoors. John earned the honor of becoming an Eagle Scout growing up and later served in the United States Marine Corps in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Katie grew up near the rivers of the Great Smoky Mountains and later served in the United States Army. Katie is a macro photographer, and she enjoys photographing John’s flies and presenting them as works of art. John and Katie have done tying and photography for local charities, organizations, in addition to participating in demonstrations for fly tying and photography at shows and outfitters.