Meet the Finalists – Beginner Fly Rods: The 14th Annual Fly Rod Building Competition

We are pleased to announce the Finalists for Category 1: Beginner Fly Rods in the 14th Annual PHWFF Fly Rod Building Competition!

Now in its 14th year, the National Fly Rod Building Competition is focused on expanding the therapeutic experience for Veterans participating in PHW programs by giving them the experience of building their own fly rods to further their physical and mental rehabilitation through the sport of fly fishing.  The program also has a fun competition component which gives participants the chance to win prizes for their rod building abilities. The Fly Rod Building Competition features four (4) separate judging rounds for Beginner (Category 1), Intermediate (Category 2), Advanced (Category 3), and Veteran Ambassador (Category 4).

We are pleased to announce the finalists for Category 1: Beginner! Over 1,300 votes were cast during the Category 1 Public Judging Round, determining who moves on to the Finals Round to be judged by an expert panel who will determine the winners.

The winners will be announced on November 2, 2022 at


Category 1: Beginner

The focus of this category is to create an understanding of what it takes to build a functional fly rod and is for participants who have never built a fly rod.

  • Andy Blue, PHW Knoxville, TN
  • Marcus Hall, PHW Knoxville, TN
  • Kimberly Reed, PHW
  • Nicholas Eighmy, PHW Quantico, VA
  • Nicholas Degiglio, PHW Royersford, PA
  • James Lopez, PHW Auburn, AL

These top fly rods from Category 1: Beginners will move on to the finals with an expert panel of judges who will determine 1st, 2nd & 3rd place . Winners of Category 1: Beginners will be announced on November 2, 2022 at

Click here to learn more about the 14th Annual Fly Rod Building Competition

Fly Rod Building: A Life Saving Gift

“Fly rod building is very therapeutic for me, it is my release. It allows me to focus on something and allows me to be creative which I think is a key part of recovery and healing

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