Abby Lowell, Originally published on Aug. 3, 2012, Juneau Empire
By Abby Lowell, Originally published on Aug. 3, 2012, Juneau Empire
Tammy Kramer, is a woman who breaks not only clay pigeons, but also boundaries.
On July 20, her fellow trapshooting competitors honored her with an induction into the Alaska Amateur Trapshooting Association Hall of Fame.
“It was an honor that came as a total shock,” Kramer, who is also a union teacher with the Alaska Public Employees Association AFT Supervisory Unit Local 4900, said. “No one had been inducted into the hall of fame for more than three years.”
Inductions are based on two criteria: Trapshooting accomplishments and contributions to the sport in Alaska. Fellow trapshooter Dave Kaiser said Kramer had wholeheartedly earned the award not only for her adept skill as a shooter, but also for her contribution to the sport in Juneau and throughout the region.
Kramer and her husband moved to Juneau at a time when the Juneau Gun Club was something of a “good ol’ boy” club, she said. Despite the fact she had grown up bird hunting with her father in eastern Washington, Kramer sat on the sidelines while her husband participated in local shoots.
“We didn’t know there was a gun club in Juneau until one of my husband’s friends told us about it,” she said.
At the time, the club was small, Kramer said. The finances were in disarray and volunteers needed direction.
One day, she was asked if she wanted to shoot. That, Kramer said, is what started it all.
“That’s how I got hooked,” she said. “I soon became president — the first woman president.”
And she started making changes. Kramer said she helped to revamp Juneau’s Gun Club, she ran or helped to run the JGC winter league since its inception, brought ATA and PITA registered trap shooting to Juneau on a regular basis and, with her husband and other members, helped to upgrade JGC equipment and organized the bank balance, to name a just a few.
In 2010 and 2011, the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance experienced the improvements Kramer made to the facility, first-hand, by hosting a trap shoot for local union members.
Kramer also became one of the first 4H Shooting Sports Shotgun Leaders in the state and one of the first nationally trained 4H instructors, Kaiser said in his induction speech last month.
“In fact, (Kramer) certified me as a 4H Shotgun Leader while I was working temporarily in Juneau,” he said.
Kramer was also the first AIM director for Alaska, established a women’s shooting program with the JGC and hosts the annual Shoot for the Cure (a fundraiser for breast cancer awareness and research) in October. For the last three years, Kramer has served as an instructor in the Becoming an Outdoor Woman Workshop, hosted annually by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Kaiser said she has also served for several years at the Juneau representative on the ASATA board of directors.
Kramer has been participating in the gun club since 2000, winning competitions with her keen aim. She shoots a 12-guage Beretta Combo Trap Set, by the way. And, to this day continues to mentor shooters of all ages.
This year, Kramer said she’s distanced herself a bit from the sport to focus her attention on work. Despite her time away from the targets, Kramer still managed to shoot a perfect score (10 out of 10) in one of the three events in which she competed last month at the Alaska State ATA Shoot. This regional shoot attracts competitors from all over the Pacific Northwest and Idaho, she said.
Kramer loves the sport and plans to continue, even though she’s stepped down as current president of the JGC.
“I’m still teaching, I’m going to continue to do what I do. Shooting is one sport where men and women are pretty much equal; we shoot the same guns and we shoot at the same targets,” she said.
Juneau may be seeing a lot more of Kramer.
“I’ve taken up archery,” she said.