2015 Special Guests

Governor Matt Mead
Wyoming Governor
  Matt Mead was sworn in as Wyoming's 32nd governor on January 3, 2011. Born in Jackson, Wyoming, Governor Mead was raised on the family ranch in Teton County. He has a BA degree from Trinity University in San Antonio and a law degree from the University of Wyoming. After law school, the Governor served as a county and federal prosecutor, practiced in a private firm in Cheyenne with now Attorney General Greg Phillips, and served as United States Attorney for Wyoming from October 2001 to June 2007. After he stepped down as U. S. Attorney, Matt and his wife Carol, the First Lady, returned fulltime to operating their farming and ranching business in southeast Wyoming.

Since taking office, Governor Mead has continued to travel to communities around the state to hear from residents in the places where they live and work. He maintains an open door policy in his office at the Capitol Building.

Representing the interests of the state, the Governor also serves in regional and national leadership roles. He serves on the Council of Governors, a group of 10 governors chosen by the President to advise top federal officials on matters related to the National Guard and civil support missions. In the National Governors Association, he serves as co‐chair of the Special Committee on Homeland Security and Public Safety and is a member of the Natural Resources Committee. He is co‐chair of the State and Federal Sage Grouse Task Force, which brings together federal officials and representatives of 11 western states for a regional conservation effort.

Matt and Carol have been married 20 years, with Cheyenne as their home. They have two children, Mary and Pete, who attend Cheyenne public schools.

Dave Freudenthal
Former Wyoming Governor
  Dave graduated in 1973 from Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts, with a bachelor's degree in economics. After graduating he joined the Department of Economic Planning and Development as an economist and later became the state planning director for Governor Ed Herschler. Freudenthal entered the University of Wyoming College of Law, receiving his law degree in 1980, and went into private practice. In 1994, he was appointed U.S. Attorney upon the recommendation of then-Governor Mike Sullivan and left the post of U.S. Attorney in May 2001. Dave became the 31st Governor of the State of Wyoming in January 2003 serving two terms, until January 2011.

Scott Talbot
Wyoming Game and Fish
  Scott was appointed by Governor Matt Mead as the Director of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. Scott began his career with the Department in 1985, became a Game Warden in 1989 and in 2003 promoted to Assistant Chief of the Wildlife Division. Scott hunts and fishes with his two sons, Payden and Luke, enjoys training horses, backpacking in the remote mountains of Wyoming and remains actively involved in the family's ranching operation near Laramie.

Andy Griggs
  Andy Griggs growing up in Monroe, LA, was raised on Jerry Lee Lewis, Jimmy Swaggert, Waylon, Bill Monroe, hardcore blues, and hardcore rock’n roll, sprinkled with a touch of jazz. He often says, “there is no defining a style of song. As long as there’s soul, it has a place in music.” Andy moved to Nashville in 1995.. His father, died from a brain tumor when Andy was 11 years old. His brother Mason, his only sibling, took the baton of music and ran with it. Mason died at the early age of 21 from heart complications that he had had since birth. Andy grabbed that same baton and he quotes, “when I jumped into the pool of music, I jumped into the deep end and never came out.” After several years of playing in the blue grass band, ‘Jerry and Tammy Sullivan’ Andy found himself a record deal with RCA and exploded with his first single “You Won’t Ever Be Lonely.” Since them he has had two #1’s, five top 5”s and 4 other top 10’s.

Aaron Warbritton

Host and producer of
Cabela's Spring Thunder
  Aaron Warbritton is the host and producer of Cabela's Spring Thunder.  He is an accomplished turkey hunter whose love for the sport began at a young age.  Aaron's interest in turkeys began in northern Missouri where he grew up, but he now hunts many states each spring in pursuit of toms.  Warbritton has competed in many national calling contests and feels fortunate that he has been able to turn his passion into profession.

The turkey show, Cabela's Spring Thunder, has really taken off this past year.  It's a near real-time show, aimed at helping hunters become better at harvesting turkeys.  Warbritton is excited about the growth of the show and hopes to do his part in furthering the sport through educating seasoned and new turkey hunters.



Chad Bedell
  Chad Bedell was born in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. His family ranched in the Elk River valley raising cattle, horses and sheep. They wintered the livestock in Vernal, Utah where Chad attended school participating in FFA, Wrestling and Rodeo. Chad graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture Economics.

Chad competed for 12 years in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association in steer wrestling culminating in three trips to the National Finals Rodeo in 1994, 1995, 1996 and won the world championship in Steer Wrestling in 1996.

Chad and his wife Jennifer are avid hunters and have enjoyed hunting in many locations including Alaska and Namibia.


Michael J. Sullivan
Former Governor of Wyoming


Former Ambassador Michael Sullivan focuses his law practice in the areas of business counseling, public policy, litigation mediation, arbitration, and international business development with an emphasis on Ireland and Western Europe.

As an accomplished trial lawyer, Mr. Sullivan has practiced before Wyoming district courts, the Wyoming Supreme Court, Federal District Court, and the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Mr. Sullivan, who practices out of the firm's Casper and Denver offices, has a rich and varied background of public service. Mr. Sullivan was elected governor of Wyoming in 1986 and reelected in 1990 and recently served as U.S. Ambassador to Ireland under the Clinton and Bush administrations. In 1995, after completing his second term as governor, he held a fellowship at the Institute of Politics, the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.


Stephen Coonts
  Stephen Coonts is an American thriller and suspense novelist who grew up in Buckhannon, West Virginia, a small coal-mining town, and earned is B.A. degree at West Virginia University. He served in the US Navy earning a number of Navy commendations, including the Distinguished Flying Cross. After the war Coonts served as a flight instructor for A-6 aircraft for two years, then did a tour as an assistant catapult and arresting gear officer aboard USS Nimitz (CVN-68). After being honorably discharged from duty as a lieutenant in 1977, Coonts pursued a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree at the University of Colorado, graduating in 1979. He then worked as a lawyer for several oil and gas companies, pursuing his writing interests in his free time.

Coonts published short stories in a number of publications before writing Flight of the Intruder in 1986. That book, based in part on his experiences as an A-6 pilot during the Vietnam War, spent 28 weeks on the New York Times bestseller lists, and later (1991) was made into a movie. This launched his career as a novelist, and he continued writing adventure-thrillers, most of them based on the main character from his first book, Jake Grafton. Today Coonts continues to write, having had seventeen New York Times bestsellers (out of 20 books). He lives in Colorado with his second wife, Deborah Jean.


Kade Hinkhouse
  Kade Hinkhouse. joined the USMC in 2004, trained for a year, before he deployed to Iraq. He was stationed in 29 Palms, CA with 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, India Company. While in Iraq, he was stationed at Camp Ramadi was Infantry rifleman. On October 8, 2005, while on patrol, his HUMVEE ran over a dual stacked IED. The HUMVEE exploded, ejecting and leaving him near death with injuries including a depressed skull fracture, collapsed lungs and a severe leg injury.

His right leg needed was amputated above the knee, 40% of his skull was removed to alleviate swelling of my brain, and was placed into a drug induced coma where he remained for three weeks. After waking up, the left side of his body was paralyzed due to the Traumatic Brain Injury.  He has had countless hours of physical therapy and numerous surgeries. I now live with my wife, Becky, and my daughter, Zoe, in Elizabeth, CO. He has completed an associates program in gun smithing and work at the gun counter at Cabela’s in Lone Tree, CO.  He enjoys shooting competitively, hunting, skiing, and being outdoors.


Richard McGinity,
President, University of Wyoming
  On January 16, 2014, the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees appointed Dick McGinity president of the university.

Prior to his appointment as president, McGinity served as interim president and interim vice president for academic affairs.  He joined the UW faculty in 2007 as the Bill Daniels Chair of Business Ethics.

In addition to serving as a UW faculty member in the College of Business, McGinity’s public service includes over seven years as a director of the Wyoming Business Council, including Co-Chair in 2004-2005; three years as member of the finance committee of the Town of Wellesley, Massachusetts; and five years as a naval aviator during which he served in Viet Nam, earning two air medals.

McGinity maintains a residence in Crowheart, Wyoming.  He loves being in the wilderness on horseback and is a licensed professional guide.


John McKinley

  Appointed to the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees in 2015.  McKinley is a partner in the Cheyenne office of Davis & Cannon LLP, and the firm's managing partner. He joined the firm in July 1994 after spending five years practicing law in Salt Lake City. He is a member of the Order of the Coif, the American Inns of Court and Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation.
A graduate of the UW College of Law, with honors, in 1989, he serves on the College of Law Dean's Advisory Board. He also holds a master’s of business administration degree from UW.
McKinley grew up in western Wyoming. He and his wife, Kathleen, have three children.
“I plan on being a productive member of the Board of Trustees to assist in guiding the university forward in providing quality education to its students,” he says.


Kevin Blake Weldon
  Kevin Blake Weldon was born in Lufkin, Texas but currently residing in Des Moines, I.  He began his career in country music in 1990.  His first band, “Blake Weldon and Texas Fire", won the “Coors Light Texas Music/Battle of the Bands” in Houston, TX in 1993. Soon after, he was paired with fellow Texan, Brian Gowan, as part of the duo, Blake & Brian.  The duo recorded two top-40 hits in the late 90's and scored a # 1 in Europe before they split. Kevin then returned home to TX and recorded his first solo album, “Hold On,” While bow hunting with friends in Illinois, Kevin made up a comedy hunting song called "That's What You Get for Shooting My Buck".  Kevin recently released his first official music video entitled “I’m Pretty Bad at Huntin’ Deer”.

Kevin is the proud father of 2 daughters, Sarah and Ashley, who honorably served for four years in the United States Marine Corp. Kevin has teamed up with Pete Rose’s foundation, Hustle for Heroes, where he has created the Band of Heroes project. The project will include a documentary film and CD recording of 4 combat veterans which will raise awareness of PTSD and funds to provide support to helping all vets who suffer from PTSD.

Brian Scott
K2 Radio Host


Brian Scott is a Wyoming guy. He moved with his family in 1970 to a ranch outside of Medicine Bow then off to Saratoga and landing in Casper in the mid 70's. Elementary school, junior high and high school as well as some time at Casper College, molded the man you know today. After getting started in radio at KTRS in the early 80's Brian had a chance to go to work for CBS records in Chicago. Stints with Polygram And Geffen followed before family and the call of Casper brought him home. Brian took over the K2 Radio morning show almost 20 years ago and remains one of the top rated morning shows in the state. Brian has also had some fun getting close to the music with his midday show on MyCountry 95.5. In the year 2000 Brian was awarded the prestigious Marconi Award for Personality of the Year. Brian has been married almost 25 years, has 3 boys and 3 granddaughters that are the apples of his eye.

    2015 Youth Hunters
    (No Photos) Kaylee Sorter - Brycen Cheney - Tanner Eller
Cole Corder
Dakota and Savannah Merritt
Tanner Eller
  Gage Porter   Levi Krantschun
  Kate Cooley   Steven Elliott
  Kori Amos   Wade Sanders