PARK FALLS, Wis. (January 3, 2023) – St. Croix Rod, handcrafters of the Best Rods on Earth® for 75 years, is pleased to announce the hiring of Zack Dalton as Fly Fishing Director of Sales. Dalton brings 23 years of experience in the fly-fishing business to his new position at St. Croix.
A lifelong angler, Dalton grew up in Idaho Falls with immediate access to world-class trout fishing. He entered the fly-fishing industry as a manufacturing lead and customer service representative for RIO Products in 1998. His career at RIO would take him around the world, and Dalton’s authentic fly-fishing skills earned widespread recognition extending into the realms of steelhead, salmon, saltwater, and beyond. Dalton was already an established authority and a respected voice in the fly-fishing industry when RIO was acquired by Far Bank Enterprises in 2005, at which time he remained onboard and began managing sales for both the RIO and Sage brands. He continued as sales manager for all Far Bank brands through December of 2021.
Now living in Poulsbo, Washington, the 44-year-old Dalton begins the next chapter in his professional career with St. Croix Fly Fishing this week.
“I’m extremely grateful for my many years at RIO and Far Bank, “Dalton says. “We launched a lot of highly successful products over a number of years, and that goal – bringing new products to market that help fly anglers experience greater success and more satisfaction – is really what motivated me to join this exceptional team St. Croix is building to reestablish its fly-fishing brand for the benefit of anglers.”
St. Croix CEO, Scott Forristall, has deep roots in the fly-fishing industry and worked closely with Dalton in the past. “Zack reported to me during my own time at Far Bank,” Forristall says. “He is a student of the fly-fishing institution – the sport and the industry – and proved instrumental to the company’s success in sales but was also very involved and skilled in product development. He had personal relationships with almost everyone in the business and was the best sales manager in the fly-fishing industry at that time. I believe he still is.”
Forristall emphasizes that St. Croix is serious about leveraging its research, technology, materials, and manufacturing capabilities to offer fly anglers exciting, inspiring, and compelling new rod choices moving forward. “St. Croix has always been in the fly-fishing market, and it was a major part of our portfolio for many years,” he says. “Our ability to design and manufacture rods is second to none, and now we’re assembling a team that I believe will allow us to earn and command a seat at the table in the fly rod market.”
Dalton points to many factors that make St. Croix a special company and a unique career opportunity. “There’s 75 years of history and heritage here, which translates to so many personal stories and memories associated with the St. Croix brand on behalf of fly anglers everywhere. There’s also a very strong family-oriented culture permeating the brand. Then, of course, there’s St. Croix’s significant design and manufacturing capabilities, which – in my opinion – are unmatched in the industry. It all adds up to a tremendous amount of excitement about reengaging with the fly-fishing community, reestablishing authentic relationships, and ultimately doing the work that’s going to earn the attention and respect of fly anglers. I couldn’t be more excited.”
In his capacity as Fly Fishing Director of Sales, Dalton will work closely with St. Croix Vice President of Sales, Steve Self, as well as St. Croix Fly Fishing Brand Manager, Tom Larimer, to build relationships with a network of the best and most-trusted fly-fishing retailers across North America and, eventually, around the world.
“Zack’s skills, knowledge, and humble personality have served him well, and they’re the same attributes that make him the best choice for this critical new position at St. Croix,” says Self. “He’s earned respect in the fly-fishing industry because he gives what he gets; he’s built trusted relationships by being a good partner and an advocate for the community – both anglers and the trade. We know we have our work cut out for us, but success in any job begins with the people being tasked, and we’ve worked very hard and invested the resources necessary to build the best possible team. Now, Zack has the responsibility of carrying that charge forward and solidifying relationships that will extend the St. Croix Fly Fishing family to include our critical retail partners.”
Larimer agrees. “I’ve known Zack for years, but only as a fierce competitor. Watching his leadership from a distance, I’ve always admired his approach to the game. In my mind, there’s no one better equipped to lead the sales team as St. Croix reimagines the fly side of our business. In addition to his primary role of solidifying and supporting our retail presence, Zack’s significant experience in fly-fishing product development will add a great deal of value to our overall go-to-market strategy. There’s a groundswell beneath this brand – a tangible energy that’s building internally as we continue to execute on our new direction and test prototypes that will challenge the market. With Zack joining the team, that momentum just hit warp speed.”
About St. Croix Rod
Headquartered in Park Falls, Wisconsin, St. Croix has been proudly producing the “Best Rods on Earth” for nearly 75 years. Combining state-of-the-art manufacturing processes with skilled craftsmanship, St. Croix is the only major producer to still build rods entirely from design through manufacturing. The company remains family-owned and operates duplicate manufacturing facilities in Park Falls and Fresnillo, Mexico. With popular trademarked series such as Legend®, Legend Xtreme®, Victory Avid®, Premier®, RIFT, Imperial®, Triumph® and Mojo, St. Croix is revered by all types of anglers from around the world.