Former North Idaho Fish and Game commissioner Nancy Hadley has been an avid hunter since the days when her dad used to take her hunting around Sandpoint.
Knowing her father would first stop at a Sandpoint cafe for breakfast, Hadley would bring a change of clothes just in case she ran into a classmate on the way to the deer stand.
“Back then they didn’t have clothing for women for hunting,” Hadley said. “I would wear jeans and a nice shirt in case anybody saw me. Then I would put on my dad’s old wool pants and boots, my red plaid coat in the car as we drove to our deer hunting spot.”
Hadley, a financial advisor and senior vice president at D.A. Davidson & Company, is also on the board of directors of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.
Her story is included in a elk foundation video, released this week, shot while she was on a black powder elk hunt in New Mexico.
She first started hunting at age 10 and hunting became a sport that Hadley soon excelled at.
“It was always a sport I could do,” Hadley said. “I wasn’t competing with anyone but myself. Hunting to me, refills everything within me.”
Hadley is the only woman to serve as an Idaho Department of Fish and Game commissioner. She was selected by Gov. Phil Batt in 1997, and after being reappointed by then Gov. Dirk Kempthorne, she served until 2005.
Since then, Governor Butch Otter nominated Joan Hurlock, the daughter of a game warden, to be the second woman to sit on the commission, but her nomination was blocked in the state senate.
Hadley is also an honorary life member of the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and she has spent more than 25 years as a hunter’s education instructor.
“I have been involved at a local level for many years and appreciate RMEF’s many accomplishments,” Hadley said. “I hope to continue the mission of the RMEF. It has and will continue to make a difference for generations to come.”
The RMEF board of directors is made up of 26 members from 15 states. The Missoula-based wildlife conservation group has 220,000 members in more than 500 chapters across the country. Since it was founded in 1984, the organization has raised money and supplied volunteers to protect and enhance wildlife habitat on 6.8 million acres.
The video and Hadley’s story can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/TH-dF_ES-6o