Craig Boddington was born and raised in Kansas, where his early big-game experience, in the mid-1960’s, included pronghorn and mule deer in Wyoming, whitetail and mule deer in Kansas, and mule deer in Colorado. When not involved with hunting and shooting, much of his early years were spent in Boy Scout activities. At 14 he became an Eagle Scout, at 16 received a Silver Palm on his Eagle, and at 17 was the youngest person to become Activities Director at his regional Boy Scout camp. A member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity, he attended the University of Kansas on an NROTC scholarship, graduating with an English degree and a regular commission in the United States Marine Corps. His outdoor writing career began in college and continued while on active duty. In 1979 he joined Petersen Publishing Company, where he served as Associate Editor, GUNS & AMMO magazine; Editor, GUNS & AMMO Specialty Publications; Executive Editor, Petersen’s HUNTING Magazine; and from 1983 to 1994 Editor of Petersen’s HUNTING Magazine. He was the longest-running Editor in Petersen’s HUNTING’s history. His current position with Outdoor Sportsman Group (formerly Petersen’s, Primedia, and Intermedia) is Executive Field Editor of GUNS & AMMO, Petersen’s HUNTING, and RIFLESHOOTER; and co-host of Guns & Ammo TV and Petersen’s Hunting Adventures TV Craig and his wife, Donna, divide their time between the California Central Coast and a small farm in Kansas.
In excess of 5000 magazine articles published. Author of 27 books on hunting and shooting:
PUBLISHED IN GERMANY, SPAIN, ENGLAND, SOUTH AFRICA, AUSTRALIA, SCOTLAND, RUSSIA, and CANADA as well as the United States.
- INAUGURAL RECIPIENT of Peter Hathaway Capstick Literary Award from Safari Club International, 1997.
- SHOOTING SPORTS WRITER OF THE YEAR, Outdoor Writers Association of America, 1999.
- RECIPIENT, Leupold “Jack Slack Writer of the Year” award, 2005.
- RECIPIENT, Safari Club International’s “CJ McELROY AWARD” 2008.
- RECIPIENT, Chancellor Foundation “Conservationist of the Year” 2008.
- RECIPIENT, “CONKLIN AWARD,” Conklin Foundation, 2009.
- RECIPIENT, “JJ MALEK GOLDEN AWARD”, 2010
- RECIPIENT, Zeiss Writer of the Year, 2010
- PRESIDENT, Weatherby Foundation International (July 2004-January 2009), Board member 1987-present
- NOMINEE, Weatherby Hunting and Conservation Award, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
- BOARD MEMBER, PARALYZED VETERANS OF AMERICA OUTDOOR HERITAGE FUND
- BOARD MEMBER, SOMETHING MORE SAFARIS
- BOARD MEMBER, NRA WHITTINGTON CENTER
- BOARD MEMBER, PAST SHOOTERS COUNCIL, GRAND NATIONAL WATERFOWL HUNT
- REGULAR CONTRIBUOR TO SPORTS AFIELD Magazine.
- NEW PRODUCTS EDITOR, SAFARI Magazine.
- REGULAR CONTRIBUTOR to FAIR CHASE, the magazine of the Boone & Crockett Club. Consultant to Boone & Crockett’s Publications Committee.
- SELECTED AS “MOST FAMOUS SPORTSMAN FROM KANSAS” by www.wideopenspaces.com, selecting best-known sportsmen/women from each of 50 U.S. States; in company with Daniel Boone, Jim Bridger, David Crockett, Ernest Hemingway, Jack O’Connor, Theodore Roosevelt, Robert Ruark, Babe Ruth, Jedediah Smith, and 40 others.
- Member of Boone & Crockett Club
- Wild Sheep Foundation
- Professional Outdoor Media Association
- Past President, Board of Governors Los Angeles Chapter Safari Club International
- Life Member, National Rifle Association
- Life Member, Safari Club International
- Life Member, Dallas Safari Club
- Life Member, Houston Safari Club
- Honorary Life Member, Campfire Club of America
- Honorary Life Member, African Safari Club of Florida
- Life Member, Grand National Quail Club Past Shooters Council
- Life Member Guide Outfitter Association of British Columbia
Featured speaker for numerous shows and organizations, including seminar on “Deer Hunting Coast to Coast” for NRA’s Great American Hunters Tour; featured speaker on African and North American hunting for International Sportsmen’s Expositions; keynote speaker for: Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Foundation for North American Wild Sheep, Dallas Safari Club, M’Zuri Safari Foundation. Featured in numerous hunting videotapes, including Swarovski Optics’ “Affordable Africa” series, Weatherby’s “Cape Buffalo” video, etc. From 2005 to 2011 served as host of Tracks Across Africa on The Outdoor Channel. From 2013 to 2016 hosted The Boddington Experience on The Sportsman Channel Currently co-host of Guns & Ammo TV and Petersen’s Hunting Adventures TV;. Together with Safari Classics Productions produced Boddington on Buffalo, Boddington on Leopard, Craig Boddington’s African Experience, Boddington on Buffalo 2, Boddington on Elephant, Boddington on Lion DVD’s. In 2015 co-produced (with Conrad Evarts) not-for-profit documentary “Anti-Poaching Mozambique.”
NORTH AMERICAN HUNTING EXPERIENCE:
Hunted big game in 29 American states, eight Canadian provinces, six Mexican states in all regions of North America. This experience includes nine Alaskan hunts, 24 Canadian hunts, 16 hunts in Mexico, whitetail deer hunting in 20 states, and extensive experience in the western U.S. for 40 years. Successfully hunted all varieties of North American big game except jaguar and walrus. Two Grand Slams of North American wild sheep.
INTERNATIONAL HUNTING EXPERIENCE:
- 120 African hunts, including safaris in: Kenya, Zimbabwe, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Tanzania, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Central African Republic, Chad, Cameroon, Ghana, Tunisia, Liberia, and Uganda.
- Only living American journalist who has hunted Africa’s Big Five of elephant, rhino, lion, leopard, and buffalo.
- Only living American journalist who has hunted Africa’s nine principal spiral-horned antelopes, consisting of: greater kudu, lesser kudu, bushbuck, nyala, mountain nyala, common eland, giant eland, sitatunga, and bongo. One of two persons known to have taken all of these species twice.
- Only journalist to hold Ovis/Grand Slam Club’s World Slam of Wild Sheep and Capra World Slam of wild goats, and “Triple Slam” incl. North American Grand Slam. Currently holds Ovis/Grand Slam Club’s Ovis “Super 20,” Capra “Super 30,” and North American “Super Slam.”
- Collected more than 130 species of African big game, more than 300 species worldwide; including numerous Rowland Ward and Safari Club record book entries.
- 25 European hunts, including hunting in: England, Scotland, Greece, Finland, Hungary, Spain, Austria, Iceland, Greenland, Sweden, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Macedonia, Romania, France, and Estonia.
- Additionally has hunted in Armenia, Azerbaijan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Pakistan, Siberia, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Philippines, Argentina, Australia, New Caledonia, New Zealand, and Peru…more than 50 countries in all.
ADDITIONAL SHOOTING EXPERIENCE:
Former All-American trapshooter. Collegiate and inter-service smallbore and centerfire rifle and pistol competitor. Qualified “Marine Corps Expert” with rifle and pistol for more than 20 consecutive years Participant in most target shooting disciplines, big bore, smallbore, and long range rifle shooting; “bullseye” and practical pistol shooting; sporting clays, trap, and skeet shotgun shooting. Avid handloader since 1964. Writing frequently includes technical firearms subjects and evaluation of firearms, optics, and ammunition.
31 years service as Marine Corps infantry officer. Served as infantry platoon commander, company executive officer, infantry company commander, headquarters company commander, battalion logistics officer, battalion operations officer, battalion executive officer, regimental operations officer, infantry battalion commander, Assistant Chief of Staff/G-3 (Operations) on brigade staff, Group commanding officer, Task Force Commander. Final assignment at retirement was Vice Commander, Marine Forces Pacific. Activated in support of Operation Desert Shield/Storm in 1991 and Operation Vigilant Warrior in 1994. Recalled to active duty for six months in 1997 and six months in 1998 to serve as Current Operations Officer for I Marine Expeditionary Force. Recalled to active duty to serve as Marine Forces Pacific Liaison to U.S. Central Command from January through April 1999. Recalled to active duty March-August 2000 to serve as Current Operatons Officer, I Marine Expeditionary Force. Recalled to active duty March 2002—February 2003 to serve as Commander, Combined-Joint Task Force Consequence Management, headquartered in Kuwait. His Task Force received the Joint Meritorious Unit Citation for actions while under his command. Personal decorations include: Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal (Gold Star in lieu of second award), Navy Commendation Medal (Gold Star in lieu of second award). Promoted to Colonel USMCR October 1996. Selected for promotion to Brigadier General USMCR in April 2001. Retired September 2005.