Southeastern Outdoor Press Association

SEOPA is the nation’s premier regional outdoor communicator’s organization

  • May, 1964 Founded at Fontana Village, N.C by Tennessean Evan Means
  • 1965 Treasury contained $35.26 for publication of a newsletter
  • 1973 Tom Rollins executive director
  • 1974 SEOPA boasted 95 active and 39 corporate members
  • 1976 Meetings were decreased from twice annually to once because of an increase in gasoline prices
  • 1977 SEOPA was chartered
  • 1984 SEOPA logo was redesigned to include Arkansas
  • 1985 Sharon Coe (Rushton), SEOPA’s first woman president
  • 1987 initiated the SEOPA Education Fellowship Endowment with scholarships to deserving Southern students in outdoor-related fields
  • 1988 Tom Rollins retired as executive director.
    400 members with assets of almost $20,000 and acquired a reputation as the largest, most active and progressive regional outdoor press association.
  • 1988 Carle Dunn executive director.
  • 1988 SEOPA office was moved to Zwolle, La
  • 1992 Outdoor Tables and Tales cookbook was published
  • 1992 Gail Wright succeeded Carle Dunn as executive director
  • 1992 SEOPA office was moved to Gilbert, S.C.
  • 1995 West Virginia, Missouri and Texas were added to the SEOPA area
  • membership climbed from 375 to 579
  • 1996 Gail Wright resigned and was granted honorary lifetime membership status in the organization by the board of directors
  • 1996 Stephanie E. Wise was selected to serve as executive director, and the office was moved to Sumter, S.C.
  • 1999 Lisa McDowell (Snuggs)  executive director
  • 1999 office was moved to Unionville, Tenn
  • 2001  first Southeast Outdoor Showcase debuted in Gulf Shores, Ala
  • 2002 new website was unveiled to include links to members’ sites and a color version of the newsletter
  • 2002 SEOPA moved to North Carolina
  • 2004 established the Outdoor Journalist Education Foundation of America Inc. (OJEFA)
    a 501(c) (3) nonprofit corporation dedicated to further education, research and network opportunities in the field of outdoor journalism for students, active outdoor journalists and outdoor journalist organizations.
  • 2005 the annual conference was canceled because of weather (Hurricane Katrina)


P.O. Box 115
Badin, NC 28009

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