Joella Bates is a wildlife professional and dedicated outdoors participant with 51 years of experience hunting and 56 years fishing. She has worked as a naturalist, wildlife officer, fisheries manager, and environmental scientist prior to becoming an outdoors promoter. She can do it all: hunt, fish, shoot any type of weapon with considerable skill. Joella shoots compound bows, crossbows, recurve bows, longbows and selfbows. She is also a writer, speaker, instructor, coach, sales person, and motivator drawing many into outdoor adventures.
She was honored as a 2013 Kentucky Colonel (ambassador of good will), 2011 inductee into the Legends of the Outdoors National Hall of Fame and a 2005 inductee into the Outdoor Channel’s Circle of Honor. In 2004, Joella was selected as the Event Coordinator for the Jack Daniels – Field and Stream Magazine’s Total Outdoorsman Challenge. Joella coordinates many outfitted hunts for groups. Joella is actively involved in many outreach programs that connect youth, women, and families with the outdoor world through archery and other outdoor skills programs.
After attending the University of Tennessee at Martin on a rifle scholarship and earning a B.S. in Natural Resources Management, she added a M.S. in Biology with emphasis in Fisheries Management from Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville, TN. In 1996, Joella became an inductee into the UTM Athletic Hall of Fame for the sport of rifle.
In 1989, Joella took up archery for bowhunting; she has taken 80 different species of animals with her bows including becoming the first woman bow hunter to harvest a Cape buffalo in 2001; a Wild Turkey Grand Slam in 2004; and the Big 5 (lioness, elephant, Cape buffalo, leopard and green hunted a white rhinoceros) in 2009. She is the first bow hunter to take the Big 5 of Africa in a single safari in < 30 days.
Joella has earned 11 World Championships in archery. She claimed five 3-D Archery World Championship Titles with a compound bow – four as a Woman Pro and has earned over $100,000 in tournaments along with numerous national, regional, state, and local titles until an injury in 2003 sidelined her from competition. In 2015, Joella returned to competitive archery, but this time with a longbow. She has now claimed four 3-D World Championships with recurve barebow and one with a longbow. In 2017, Joella represented women’s barebow on the first TEAM USA to compete for the World Archery 3-D World Championship against 30 other countries in Robion France.
Besides competing in Traditional archery, Joella spends most of her time conducting JOCAMPS Archery Boot Camps and training archery instructors for youth programs with NASP, S3DA, USA Archery and Centershot Ministries. Joella spent over a year as the assistant coach at Bethel University where she presented over 22 million dollars in archery scholarships to top archers from S3DA and NASP.
Now at 57, Joella is physically and mentally fit ready to take on more challenges and adventures.
Whether you are looking to begin your archery journey, want to improve your or your team's competition skills, or you want to get ready for the upcoming deer season and need some tune-up on your bow and some brush up on your skills, Joella is ready to help! And, if you would like to be trained and developed as a Coach/Instructor, then setup some time with Joella. You will be amazed at how much improvement you and/or your team can make!
Passing on the Passion!