SPRINGFIELD – Dan Dobrinich, a Montgomery County resident and an advocate for youth hunting and fishing, is the Illinois Recreational Access Program (IRAP) Landowner of the Year for 2022, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources announced today.
The Landowner of the Year award is presented to a landowner enrolled in IRAP who has demonstrated outstanding habitat improvement and conservation practices while allowing public access on their private property through the IRAP initiative.
Dobrinich, who first enrolled in the program in 2019, is a strong supporter of providing today's youth with the opportunity to participate in outdoor recreational activities. Dobrinich allows youth turkey hunting; waterfowl, squirrel, and rabbit hunting; and fishing on his IRAP-leased property. Having grown up in a rural area and taken up squirrel hunting at a young age, he said he believes it's important to provide the same experiences for other youth.
"I just thought to myself, if I were a kid, where would I have to go? So I want to make sure that other kids have the opportunity to spend time outside with a parent who can teach them what I learned growing up," he said.
Dobrinich was one of six nominees recognized by IRAP staff for their conservation efforts and stewardship of Illinois' natural resources, as well as their willingness to allow public access to their land for recreational opportunities. Other 2022 nominees are:
- Melba Harris, Fulton County
- Mark Scott, Adams County
- Don Barry Sr. and Don Barry Jr., Fulton County
- Dan Yahne, Williamson County
- Clifftop Nature Group, Monroe County
For more information about the benefits of IRAP and how to enroll, visit https://bit.ly/IDNR_irap