|photography by Dan Sellers|
Most teenagers want a car for their 16th birthday. Bill Swisher wanted a hunting trophy. The avid hunter has been on the trail since he was a boy in rural Tennessee, picking up fallen shotgun shells from his father’s hunts when he was too small to shoot.
Now Swisher works as vice president at RBC Dain Rauscher securities firm in Dallas. But for the past year, the six-year veteran of the Dallas Safari Club has split his time serving as the group’s president as well.
He says the club, which is based in Dallas but has 3,500 members worldwide, is not just about killing animals. It’s also about “the adventure,” he explains, in addition to preserving wildlife. In fact, Swisher says 75 percent of conservation funding worldwide comes from hunting and fishing permit and license fees.
Though his one-year term as Safari Club president ends this month, his passion for hunting never will. Swisher’s been on more than 100 hunting trips in all—stalking black bear in Alaska, shooting dove in Mexico. Later this year, he’ll travel to Argentina to hunt birds. But it was last June—when he proposed to his then-girlfriend on a helicopter ride in New Zealand—that he bagged his biggest trophy yet: a wife.