Jeff Dennis - SCWF Harry Hampton Journalism Award Winner
Jeff Dennis is a Charleston native who grew up on James Island along a tidal creek. His family provided him with twelve years of education at Porter-Gaud School before securing a degree from Furman University. The subject of English and vocabulary in particular were strong suits in the classroom, but Jeff’s outgoing nature continuously led him into the outdoors.
Growing up on a tidal creek it cannot be over emphasized the effect that the twice-daily ebb and flow of saltwater has on all manner of Lowcountry life. One comes to understand nature a bit better it seems, witnessing the lunar tide fluctuations and other wonders of nature. Jeff was water-skiing with his older brother and sister before he can remember, and seemed as at home on the water as a duck. A saltwater creek is teeming with wildlife, not just the marine variety, and Jeff became an expert birder, observer and angler. Whether in the john boat or the Boston Whaler Jeff knew the Charleston Harbor like it was his backyard, because in fact it was. Fishing friends and fishing tournaments dominated any free time, but conservation was creeping into the equation. The SCDNR wants anglers to tag fish and release them? Fast forward twenty years, and Jeff has been a cooperating recreational angler with two decades experience of catching, tagging and releasing fish. Jeff is also tempered by the privilege of private land ownership with a small farm passing down through his family for 200 years. It was after college when his sense of woodsmanship came into bloom, but the seed was planted when he was a youth when his father took him dove hunting. All manner of wild game has been pursued since then and a deeper understanding for the uplands of the Lowcountry was earned. Completion of the Clemson Master Wildlifer class and the S.C. Forestry Commission’s Certified Prescribed Fire Manager course help him as caretaker of the family property, which is an affiliate member of the Colleton County Soil and Water Conservation District. In 2007 Snipe Hill was recognized by Quail Unlimited with the South Regional Adopt-A-Covey award, for Jeff’s habitat management work for grassland birds, including the bob white quail. Jeff works as a freelance writer and photographer and is AVAILABLE for assignment. Jeff’s freelance work involves writing for South Carolina Wildlife magazine and conservation organizations such as the American Forest Foundation, South Carolina Wildlife Federation, Coastal Conservation Association, Ducks Unlimited and the S.C. Camo coalition.
On January 17, 2009 in Columbia the South Carolina Wildlife Federation held their annual conservation awards banquet. Mr. Dennis was recognized with the SCWF Harry Hampton Woods & Waters Conservation Memorial Journalism Award, for excellence in natural resources journalism. L to R: Ben Gregg, Director of the S.C. Wildlife Federation, Jeff Dennis, and Larry Schweiger, CEO of the National Wildlife Federation.
On September 29, 2013 at The Governor's Mansion in Columbia, Mr. Dennis was recognized for his support and service to the S.C. Governor's Cup Billfish Series. Director Alvin Taylor of the SCDNR (left) and Greg Smith (right) with the Governor's Cup Board made the presentation.
On October 11, 2013 at the Southeast Outdoor Press annual meeting in SW Louisiana, the Lowcountry Outdoors blog was recognized with third place in the Realtree Website Contest. Awards Chair Jim Casada (left) and SEOPA mentor Wade
Bourne (right) were present and offered congratulations.
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Mr. Dennis was awarded the Master Tree Farmer Program's 2010 Volunteer of the Year for his work raising awareness about forestry in Colleton County and the ACE Basin at the S.C. Statehouse on March 2, 2011. L to R: Senator Ronnie Cromer of Newberry, Jeff Dennis, Bob Scott of the S.C. Forestry Association and Senator John Courson of Richland County.