The Jean-Guy Côté Award

Early in 2005 Jean-Guy knew the nature of his illness.

He kept this to himself in the hope that a miracle would allow him to continue his daily activities far into the future.

That same spring he resigned himself to share this knowledge with his friends.

During the summer he made a farewell tour of his friends, fishing one last time with each of them.

The administrators of the Canadian Fly-Fishing Museum obtained  authorization from Jean-Guy Côté to create an award in his honour.

----------------

Recipient for 2007: John Cuco

First recipient of Jean-Guy Côté Award

famille John CucoThe objective was to underline the work of a Canadian who has contributed, heart and soul, to the world of fly tying. Jean-Guy himself chose John Cuco as the first recipient. It was John Cuco who welcomed Jean-Guy into his Montreal home upon his arrival in town.
It was John Cuco who refined Jean-Guy’s techniques as a fly tyer.

It was John Cuco who showed Jean-Guy how to spool thread from a large bobbin.
It was John Cuco who taught Jean-Guy how to fish for brookies  in the lakes of the Laurentians.
It was John Cuco who took Jean-Guy to fishing exhibitions.
It was John Cuco who introduced Jean-Guy to numerous personalities of the fishing world.
It was John Cuco who showed Jean-Guy how to teach fly-tying.
It was thanks to John Cuco that Jean-Guy developed his creativity and became an innovator.
Unless Jean-Guy Côté had met and become the friend of John Cuco, the business “UNI Products” would not have existed.
It is for all these reasons that Jean-Guy Côté chose to honor and to thank John Cuco by choosing him as the first recipient of the award bearing his name.
John Cuco is now the first member of the Canadian Hall of Fame of  Fly Tyers of the Canadian Fly Fishing Museum in Waterloo, Québec.
Presentation of the Jean-Guy Côté  Award  was made to the daughter of the late John Cuco, Ms. Caroline Davidson, and other members of his family,  at Paul Leblanc’s  Salmo Nature Orvis fly shop , 110  McGill Street in Montréal on Saturday 24 March 2007.

 

Recipient for 2008: Paul C. Marriner

Second recipient of Jean-Guy Côté Award

I am honoured to be the one to introduce the 2008 recipient of the Jean-Guy Côté Award.

Paul C. Marriner

Toward the end of April in 1998, I had been invited as guest speaker at the opening supper of the Cold Creek Fly Fishers. Sitting on the shore of Cold Creek near Trenton Ontario, I was talking with Jean-Guy Côté watching Hendricksons coming off the water. We were really concentrated that we did not notice this world renowned angler who was coming over to do a little bit of talking.

 That gentleman is our winner for 2008 of the Jean-Guy Côté Award. That was for both Jean-Guy and myself our first official meeting. Near the water we chatted for a while, got to know each other better, cast a few flies and released a few browns.

At this time I would like to recall for your benefit, the selection criteria for the Award:

The recipient must have demonstrated an important contribution either to teaching, to the high quality of his fly tying, writings, creative ability and or his implication in making fly tying available to all fly tiers.

Our winner is very well known everywhere in Canada for the numerous writings in all the best fly fishing magazines. He is a member of the Outdoor Writers of Canada, the owner of Gale’s End Press, associate editor for the Canadian Fly Fisher magazine, the author of Stillwater Fly Fishing, Modern Atlantic Salmon Flies, How to Choose & Use Fly-tying Thread for UNI Products and many more articles and books dedicated to fly fishing. His latest contribution is the Compendium of Canadian Fly Patterns for Fly Fishing Canada.

At this time I know many among you have recognized our recipient of the Jean-Guy Côté Award for the year 2008. However, because of prior engagements, before he could be given the good news, he will only be with us in our thoughts. The prize will be presented to him by Jacques Héroux, from Edmunston, at the Dieppe Fly Fishing Forum in Moncton NB at the end of March.

And now, the recipient of the Jean-Guy Award for the year 2008 is, Paul C. Marriner from Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia.

 

Recipient for 2009: Paul Leblanc

Third recipient of Jean-Guy Côté Award

Paul Lablanc

In mid March of 1981 along with Leon Larocque I was representing ATOS at the Montreal Dinner of the ASF. That’s where I first met the 2009 recipient of the Jean-Guy Côté Award. He was there representing the fly shop he was working for at that time in his fly tying career.

Our winner was born in Tracadie New Brunswick. At age six his dad suggested to him going fishing in the fourth range brook near Saint-Aubert. Once there his father told him to choose a fly. He went for a bright Red Ibis.

What his father did that day is what sparked his love for fly fishing. Later on when someone would ask what he would do in life he would proudly say he would earn his living by going fly fishing.

Later he would say wanting to go salmon fishing. His dream would come true casting a fly on the Matane, St-Anne and Godbout rivers.

Once in Montreal he is hired by a sports shop and starts tying flies. He became close to Jacques Authier, John Cuco, Serge J.Vincent and Jean-Guy Côté.

His creative mind was the reason for new flies such as the Orange Grey Ghost, Black Domino, Lady Step and Hazel.

Comfortable before a crowd or a camera he was involved in a series of television programs for our benefit. He was recognized as a Master Tier by the FQSA and fly tier of the year by the ASF.

He is a co-founder of the Moucheurs du Montreal Métropolitain (MMM) and the Montreal Fly Fishing Museum.

His great talent is noticed by Canada Post when he is asked to tie a Dark Montreal for a new series of stamps.

You now know enough to identify the winner of the Jean-Guy Côté Award for 2009.

I am honoured to introduce to you the latest member of the Canadian Fly Tiers’ Hall of Fame, Mister Orvis, Paul Leblanc.

 

Recipient for 2010: Warren Duncan

Fourth recipient of Jean-Guy Côté Award

He tied hundreds of thousands of Atlantic salmon flies for anglers from all economic and social groups. Perhaps his best known client, and occasional Miramichi fishing partner, was Major League Hall of Famer Ted Williams.

Warren Duncan

In 1995, Uni Products owner, Jean-Guy Côté was in the process of selecting new colors for his Uni-Stretch material. Concurrently, he was cooperating with a renowned fly tier who appreciated Uni-Stretch and wanted to be able to use it for one of his special patterns. From this close cooperation, two new colors came to market, Chinese red and chartreuse.

The special pattern was the well-known «Undertaker».

Our winner of the 2010 Jean-Guy Award was born in Campbelton and spent his 32-year working career with the Irving Oil Company.

His avocation was fly tying. Many consider him to have been the fastest tier of high-quality flies of his time. In a demonstration of his flawless technique, he once tied a ready-to-fish Rusty Rat in one minute and thirty seconds. He used a great deal of Uni-Thread in his 25-year fly tying career!

Generous, sometimes to a fault, he loved to share the pleasures of life with family, friends, and acquaintances; a plate of lobster, a smoke, a joke, a glass of rye.

Anne DuncanIn 1993, the government of New Brunswick requested he create the official fly of the province. This fly, the «Picture Province», was offered to the G-8 leaders in Halifax in 1995.

On February 10, 2007, a customer of Dunc’s Fly Shop, on Hickey Street in St-John, N.B., found him slumped over his tying desk, still holding his bobbin.

Over the years our winner demonstrated continuous contributions to the art and craft of fly tying including teaching, superior execution, significant pattern creation, and public promotion. 

In recognition of his accomplishments, the Canadian Fly Fishing Museum of Canada and the selection committee are very proud to announce Warren Duncan as the winner of the 2010 Jean-Guy Côté Award.

 

Recipient for 2011: Arthur James Ligren

Fifth recipient of Jean-Guy Côté Award

The 2011 winner of the Jean-Guy Côté Award is a resident of British Columbia. During his adult life he has always been involved with fly fishing. He is a member and past president of the Totem Fly Fishers and acted as president of the British Columbia Federation of Fly Fishers. He is a member and served for many years as a director of the Steelhead Society of BC.

Arthur Jama LigrenHe has fished salmonids everywhere in Western Canada. He is very much involved in the protection of our Canadian fly fishing history and heritage.

Tier and creator of original fly patterns for trout and salmon for more than thirty years, he has written nine fly tying books. Two of those books are « Fly Patterns of Roderick Haig-Brown » and « Fly Patterns of British-Columbia ». His involvement does not stop there since he has contributed to ten others.

Two of his books served as Western Canada reference books for the Canada Post 1998 and 2005 fly fishing stamp series and four of the ten flies featured in these series came from our winners’ books. In fact, he dressed the Coquihalla Orange for the 1998 series.

During his career he has made an important contribution to Canadian fly tying through his writings, impressive creative ability and broad spectrum public promotion.

For these reasons, the members of the Canada wide selection committee have chosen to present the Jean-Guy Côté Award for the year 2011 to, Art Lingren from Vancouver BC.

 

Recipient for 2012: Brian Chan

Brian Chan

The winner of the Jean-Guy Côté Award for 2012 is a resident of Kamloops Brirish Columbia. A recreational fisheries biologist for his province, he is now retired. Our winner managed and promoted fishing in hundreds of trout lakes in the greater Kamloops area. He is a specialist of fishing « Kamloops » rainbow trout with midge imitations. He holds a bachelor’s degree in soft water ecology from Simon Fraser University.

He is an active member of the B.C. Federation of Fly Fishers and of the Kamloops Fly Fisher Club for at least 25 years and always passionate with lake fishing. Author, video producer, speaker and fishing guide occupy most of his time.

Brian Chan

During his career he has made a huge contribution to canadian fly tying through his writings, the high quality of his tying, his creative ability and his implication to make fly tying available to all fly tiers. His most recent books are «Fly Fishing Trout Lakes», «Stillwater Solutions Recipes-30 Proven Patterns» and his DVD «Learning with the Pros Stillwater Fly Tying». He is a regular contributor to fly fishing specialty magazines. He frequently appears on fly fishing television shows.

Our 2012 award recipient enjoys fishing all those trout lakes near his home but also enjoys river wading for steelhead.

Ian D. Martin on the left with Brian Chan at the Isaac Walton Fly Fishing Forum in Hamilton Ont. This photo was taken on March 24 following the presentation of the Jean-Guy Côté Award to Brian Chan. Ian D. Martin presented the Award to Brian Chan on behalf of the Canadian Fly Fishing Museum. Ian D. Martin is a member of the Museum.s Board of Governors.

 

Recipient for 2013: Bryant Freeman

Bryant Freeman

Bryant Freeman is the seventh recipient of the Jean-Guy Côté Award.

The honor recognizes his legendary Atlantic salmon fly-dressing skills, his work at the Escape Anglers, his creativity for production and dying substitute materials and his dedication to share his fly tying knowledge mostly to beginners and young tiers.

 

Recipient for 2014: Sheldon Seale

The winner of the Jean-Guy Award for 2014 is the eight among an imposing group of fly tyers that I have just named.

Sheldon SealeDuring their career as fly tyers they have demonstrated a continuous contribution either to teaching of fly tying, demonstrated very high quality fly tying, contributed to writing about fly tying, creating new patterns and making fly tying available to all.

Our winner has been fishing and tying flies for a long time. He was very much involved with the Isaac Walton Fly Fishing Club as past president and director besides being very active with Trout Unlimited. For more than twelve years he wrote fly tying articles for the Canadian Fly Fisher magazine. Now he is now the fly tying editor for the New Fly Fisher E-zine. This year’s winner guides and is one of the instructors at the Wilson fly fishing school.

He has trained a great number of fly tyers and seen many patterns from his vise printed in Paul Marriner’s Compendium of Canadian Fly Patterns. Now retired, he is now a full time fly tyer, writer, speaker and fly fisherman.

For all those reasons, the members of the Canada wide selection committee have chosen to present the 2014 Jean-Guy Côté Award to our fellow Canadian from the province of Ontario; Sheldon Seale

 

Recipient for 2015: Denys Poirier

The winner of the Jean-Guy Côté Award for 2015 is the ninth from an imposing group including  John Cucco, Paul C. Marriner, Paul Leblanc, Warren Duncan, Art Lingren, Brian Chan, Bryant Freeman and Sheldon Seale.

Nenys PoirierDuring their career as fly tiers they have demonstrated a continuous contribution either to teaching of fly tying, demonstrated very high quality fly tying, contributed to writing about fly tying, creating new patterns and making fly tying available to all. This is what the Jean-Guy Côté Award is all about!

Our winner has been fishing and tying flies for a long time. He and his wife gave a lot of time and effort to create the Metropolitain Montréal Fly Fishers.

Always researching the history of salmon flies, he published «Mystère des Spey» in 1994. A year later, working closely with the FQSA «Mouches sèches à saumon» was published. In that book Denys added an imposing glossary of salmon tying terminology.

With Jacques Juneau and Denis Gervais they created the «Club des 20». Denys tied an original Spey pattern for each of the club members.

He has also written many articles in various magasines. Patterns he tied were published in «Flies for Atlantic Salmon» and «Flies for Trout» published by Dick Stewart and Farrow Allen.

For all those reasons the members of the Canada wide selection committee have chosen to present the Jean-Guy Côté Award  for 2015  to Denys Poirier.

 

Recipient for 2016: Jacques Héroux

The  2016 winner of the Jean-Guy Côté Award is the tenth member joining a group made up of John Cuco, Paul C. Marriner, Paul Leblanc, Warren Duncan, Art Lingren, Brian Chan, Bryant Freeman, Sheldon Seale, and Denys Poirier.

Jacques HérouxDuring their fly tying careers  they have demonstrated a continuous contribution to one or more of the following as related to fly tying; very high quality execution, writings, teaching, significant pattern creation, and broad-spectrum public promotion. This is what the Jean-Guy Côté Award is all about!

In 1970 fly tying was  only a passtime for him. Later he seriously read many fly tying books and attended training sessions with Warren Duncan for salmon  hairwing flies and with Bryant Freeman for featherwing flies. He also credits Marc Leblanc and Jerome Molloy for making the tier he is today.

He created many new patterns of salmon flies for international competitions such as for the FQSA  and the Scandinavian fly tying championship. In 1999, he was the Atlantic Provinces Fly tying champion.

His interest in fly tying led him to begin the Dieppe Fly Tying Club in 1998 and in 2003 he was one of the instigators of the Dieppe Fly Fishing Forum.

For more than twenty five years he has been teaching fly tying classes for beginners and for those advanced tiers interested in upgrading their tying skills.

In 2009 he was inducted into the New  Brunswick Atlantic Salmon Museum located in Doaktown.

In 2015 he was selected by the Canadian Wildlife Federation which presented to him the Roderick Haig-Brown Award for recreational fishing conservation.

As an addition to his ongoing carreer and for the reasons mentionned above, the Canada wide selection committee has chosen to present the 2016 Jean-Guy Côté Award to : Jacques Héroux

 

Recipient for 2017: Phil Rowley

The 2017 winner of the Jean-Guy Côté Award is the eleventh member joining a group made up of John Cuco, Paul C. Marriner, Paul Leblanc, Warren Duncan, Art Lingren, Brian Chan, Bryant Freeman, Sheldon Seale, Denys Poirier and Jacques Héroux.

Phil RowleyDuring their fly tying careers they have demonstrated a continuous contribution to one or more of the following as related to fly tying; very high execution, writings, teaching, significant pattern creation, and broad-spectrum public promotion. This is what the Jean-Guy Côté Award is all about!

For more than thirty years he has been tying fishing flies.  Obviously he fishes for trout, Pacific and Atlantic salmon, walleye and pike with a fly but he is better known for is stillwater exploits. A former commercial tyer, he is a devoted teacher of fly tying. He is also the author of three books and many articles for North-American fly fishing magazines. He has produced four instructional DVD’s dealing with tying some of his flies. He is very much in demand to speak at Outdoor shows besides running fly fishing schools. Since all that is not enough he stillwater guides anglers near his Alberta home.

He has created many lake fly patterns and relates to them with enthusiasm when speaking on television or at shows such as B.C. Outdoors, Fishing Alberta and when co-hosting on the New Fly Fisher television show.

Since that was not enough with his ongoing career the members of the Canada wide Jean-Guy Côté Award selection committee have chosen to present the 2017 Award to; Phil Rowley

 

Recipient for 2018: Ruth Zinck

Ruth ZinckRuth Zinck is the twelfth recipient of the Jean-Guy Côté Award. This Honor recognizes her dedication to teaching the skills of fly tying to beginners in all walks of life, young and old, male or female. Thanks for her involvement, the quality of her tying and her great ability to make fly tying available mainly to children and women.

She began tying flies in 1970 she was the only female in the class. Her instructor was Ian Martin, 15 years of age at the time. Since then she has won fly tying awards and has been among the demonstration tiers at many of the Federation of Fly Fishers’ International Fly Fishing Shows.  Ruth served as an International Director of FFF for six years including Senior Vice President for Alberta, Saskatchewan and the Western Rocky Mountain Council of the FFF. Ruth has written for various for FFF journals and books as well as for other publications.

Together with Joan Kirkham, Ruth founded the KW Fishers Club in Kitchener Waterloo. When she relocated to Calgary in 1981, Ruth became the first woman to join the Hook and Hackle Club and is now a life member. In 2011 Ruth was one of the original members of the newly formed Calgary Women Fly Fishers Club.

She has created many patterns, six of which formed «The Royal Lady Series» tied specially for the Casting For Life Association in Calgary.

Over the years Ruth has volunteered at schools, clubs, community events, and fly tying expos to teach fly tying.   She has been recognized for her contributions to the world of fly tying; in 1984 «Tier of the Year-Senior Fly Tying» Hook and Hackle Club; 1998 «Fly Tier of the Year» Western Rocky Mountain Council; 2003 «Woman of the Year» FFF and 2012 «Ron Pike Award» Hook and Hackle Club.

What a contribution!

Top of Page