PSE Founder Pete Shepley Receives ATA Industry Icon Award

During the 2024 ATA Show, PSE Founder Pete Shepley was honored with the organization’s new Industry Icon Award. Three other individuals were recognized for the ATA’s Impact Awards.

PSE Founder Pete Shepley Receives ATA Industry Icon Award

Pete Shepley (left) receiving the ATA Industry Icon Award from Jeff Poole.

The Archery Trade Association recently presented its fifth annual 2024 award winners, highlighted by the ATA’s new Industry Icon award, given to PSE Founder Pete Shepley. Three other individuals were recognized for the ATA’s Impact Awards. 

“Each award recipient has gone to impressive lengths to grow the archery and bowhunting community or create innovative products that help participants enjoy archery and improve their skills,” said Jeff Poole, ATA's president and CEO. “It’s truly amazing to see archery bring out the best in people, and we’re honored to present this year’s award winners.”

New for 2024: ATA’s Industry Icon Award

The ATA’s Industry Icon Award is presented to someone who's founded an industry-leading company, developed industry-changing products, or helped significantly grow participation in archery sports. This person is an industry pioneer who's become iconic because of their contributions. The ATA presented its inaugural industry icon award to Pete Shepley.

Pete Shepley with the 1970-something PSE and a more modern PSE offering.
Pete Shepley with the 1970-something PSE and a more modern PSE offering.

Pete Shepley, founded and led PSE Archery for 50-plus years and is one of the most well-known figures in the archery industry. He founded PSE Archery more than 50 years ago in a backyard shed and grew it into one of the largest and most respected companies in the archery industry. Shepley helped design and engineer hundreds of PSE products and is credited with over 77 archery patents. He started the PSE Dealer School in the early 1980s to teach archery professionals about products and archer development. Throughout his archery career, Shepley also competed internationally and hunted big game all over the world.

ATA Impact Award Recipients

The ATA’s Impact Award is presented to people and companies that use their voice or platform to inspire others to enjoy and participate in archery and bowhunting. The 2024 recipients are:

  • Heath McDonald, founder of Young Guns Archery LLC: McDonald inspired and encouraged more youth to try archery through his nonprofit organization, Young Guns University and the Young Guns Archery mobile trailer he created. He passed away in 2022, but his legacy and efforts live on through the program and archery scholarships created in his name.
  • Aaron Scheer, Executive Director of Centershot Ministries: Scheer took over Centershot Ministries in 2019 and grew the organization tremendously in the past 4 years. He created two new innovative archery programs to connect people to Christ through archery. Scheer competes nationally in 3-D archery and has been a pro shop technician for more than 12 years.
  • J.D. Strong, former director for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation: Strong served the state of Oklahoma for over 30 years and was the OKDWC department director for 7. He was instrumental in creating a digital licensing system for the state and expanded hunting and fishing land holdings by nearly 80,000 acres during his tenure. He served on numerous outdoor leadership committees and helped foster outdoor education and training of more than 55,000 students.

New Product Launch Showcase Award Recipients

The New Product Launch Showcase features products launched at the 2024 ATA Show. This year, three out of over 150 products were awarded for their new product design, innovation and ability to meet customer demands. Click here for videos showing the winning products.

The ATA created the awards program in 2020 to recognize individuals and companies that make significant contributions to the future of archery. For more information about the awards program, contact Jennifer Mazur, ATA's senior director of outreach and education, at or (507) 233-8139.


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