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The Chairman of the Boards

By Mark Romanack

Bruce DeShano, owner of Off Shore Tackle Company, was
recently awarded Honorary Lifetime Membership from the
National Professional Anglers Association.
Bruce DeShano is a lifelong resident of Michigan and the owner of Off Shore Tackle Company. Affectionately known as the “Chairman of the Boards” among his industry colleagues and countless tournament pros, DeShano earned this title the hard way by fishing side by side with the nation’s top walleye pros on all the major professional walleye tournament trails.

DeShano quickly earned the respect of professional and amateur  anglers alike, by walking the walk and testing his own fishing knowledge and skills against the nation’s best. DeShano also used the tournament trail as a proving ground for his many trolling products and as a platform for critical feedback on how best to improve existing products. The many influences of the tournament trail and countless brainstorming sessions lead to a host of new product concepts.

Products like the wildly popular Side-Planer Board, Tattle Flag Kits, Tadpoles, Snapper Releases and the Pro Weight Kits all came to market thanks to input from Off Shore Tackle’s extensive pro staff of professional anglers. Bruce DeShano and his son Nick work closely together in their business and have hand picked an army of professional anglers representing all the species commonly targeted through trolling tactics. On the Off Shore Pro Team are anglers who specialize in walleye, trout, salmon, striper, pike, musky and even panfish like crappie!

Recently, Bruce DeShano was awarded an honor by his peers from an organization known as the National Professional Anglers Association or NPAA for short. Established in 1997, the mission statement for NPAA is to help anglers develop the professional skill sets necessary to effectively represent and grow the fishing industry.

At their annual conference DeShano was recently presented a “Honorary Lifetime Membership” award for his service to NPAA. DeShano is in good company as other individuals who have received this award include Al and Ron Lindner of Lindner’s Angling Edge and John and Duane Peterson of Northland Tackle.

One of the founding members, DeShano served on the NPAA board of directors from 2001-2011. His service to NPAA has helped the organization grow and encouraged countless professional anglers to pursue careers in the outdoors industry.

“I think becoming a member and getting involved in NPAA is the single best step a professional angler can take towards growing a career in the fishing industry,” says DeShano. “Off Shore Tackle is so dedicated to NPAA and their mission statement that we require all our National Team Pro Staffers to become supporting members.”

Off Shore Tackle and their sunburst logo have become “icons” of the fishing industry in the Great Lakes region, the Upper Midwest, the prairie states and beyond. “You’ll find Off Shore products anywhere you find anglers trolling with a purpose,” says DeShano. “While our market has largely been among walleye, trout, salmon, musky and pike anglers, we’re now enjoying a rapidly expanding market for crappie trolling products.”

Crappie are the “food fish” of the south and countless anglers are passionate about trolling for crappie. New OST products like the OR34 Mini Board were designed especially for the growing panfish trolling market and the many tournaments and tournament anglers who live to fish crappie.

“I’m more excited about the crappie market even than I was about the walleye market when it was getting started in the early 90’s,” says DeShano. “The crappie market is about eight times larger than the walleye market and we’re excited about developing new products that help these anglers be more successful on the water.”

The company slogan at Off Shore Tackle is “Your Leader in Trolling Technology” and those few simple words pretty much say it all. This family owned company takes fishing very seriously and they are even more serious about growing the industry. Thanks to the influence of Bruce DeShano, aka “The Chairman of the Boards”, Off Shore Tackle is pioneering new markets, gaining market share and more importantly helping countless anglers become more successful on the water.

For more information visit or the Off Shore Tackle Facebook page at