Growing up outside of Greenville, South Carolina, Ryan Watson remembers getting hooked on duck hunting after a thrilling harvest of greenheads, a pintail, and a wigeon on an exciting hunt with a Little League friend.
Watson attended Winthrop University for a bachelor’s degree in Sports Management which led him to his previous experience working with a non-profit. He also served in the United States Army after committing to ROTC and remains a part of the United States Army Reserves.
Although the majority of his background revolves around sports and the military, Watson’s love for the outdoors and his fond memories of wood ducks at shooting light and mallard quacks in the field brought him back to a job in conservation.
“I had enjoyed what I was doing, but there was still something missing,” Watson said. Through his journey to find a home in the conservation world, he was introduced to The Duck Hunters Organization. He had known from his first Delta event that becoming a regional director was his calling.
Watson particularly enjoys small water hunts in South Texas as the birds last stop before the coast; however, public land is his favorite style of hunting due to the reward that comes from all of the hard work. His favorite duck is a pintail, with a wood duck making its case for a close second.
In his free time, you might catch Watson and his “better half,” Callie, out on the Guadalupe River with a fishing pole. They also enjoy dove hunting and spending time with family. Other times you simply may not find him, as he chases deer, turkeys or hogs, and goes fishing and wing shooting deep in the woods or off the map.
Watson’s favorite part about his role is the community that comes along with the mission of The Duck Hunters Organization. “The friendships and development of Delta and myself that come with the position are priceless,” he said.