Fishing legend Jerry McKinnis, former B.A.S.S. co-owner and founder of JM Associates, died Sunday morning (Nov. 3), according to a report from BASSMaster.com. He was 82 years old and had recently developed an infection that left him hospitalized.
McKinnis produced a long-running decades-long series of fishing and outdoor programming that included shows for ESPN, including “The Fishin’ Hole.”
According to BASSMaster.com:
McKinnis, along with Don Logan and Jim Copeland, purchased B.A.S.S. from ESPN in 2010, and then sold controlling interest in the organization to Anderson Media in the fall of 2017. He was the leader of JM Associates, producing award winning television and Internet shows about fishing and the outdoors.
McKinnis was a member of the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame, the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame, and the International Game Fish Association Hall of Fame.
“Jerry was one of the most passionate people I’ve ever known as it relates to the world of bass fishing,” said Logan. “I don’t think I ever met anyone who spent more time than Jerry did thinking about how to make B.A.S.S. and bass fishing better — better for the anglers, better for the fans and members, and better for the sponsors.
“We came from very different backgrounds and totally different perspectives, but we always were able to reach common ground on any issue or problem we faced. He was not only a business partner, but he was also a true friend.”
McKinnis led production of his sports programming empire through JM Associates from Little Rock, Ark.
He is a member of the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame, the Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame, the National Fishing Hall of Fame, the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame, and the International Game Fish Association Hall of Fame.