Texas Fishing Company Raises Funds for Battered Women’s Foundation
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At first glance, the terms fishing company and battered women’s foundation have very little in common. For Carlos Rivera, however, the pairing comes as a result of a philanthropic, faith-based mission that extends far beyond his role as owner of a Texas-based lure and tackle manufacturer.
Over a decade ago, Rivera began crafting custom baits as an attempt to solve a problem. While fishing the “working man’s” tournament scene, a partner pointed out to him that there wasn’t enough variety in jig colors.
Rivera took finding a solution to that problem as a personal challenge.
“I jumped right in,” said Rivera. “I looked up how to make jigs at home. I started ordering skirts then painting jig heads.”
The Rivera Tackle Company’s first line of offerings — small Plano tackle boxes filled with these assorted custom jigs — was a grassroots effort that caught on with many local anglers fishing tournaments in the Fort Worth area.
Eventually, Rivera saw an opportunity for expansion around the same time the producer of a popular fishing weight was going out of business.
As more anglers began switching from lead-based weights to smaller, denser, more versatile products made of tungsten, Rivera’s research continued. He began searching for ways to acquire the lustrous metal, even reaching out directly to mining companies throughout the United States.
After being informed that tungsten isn’t commercially mined stateside, Rivera had to look overseas. He soon paired with an international manufacturer and production of a custom line of tungsten weights began shortly thereafter.
The company then added buzz baits, crank baits, and spinners to its catalog. During this period, Rivera purchased a compressor and learned to airbrush in his living room.
With this dedication, curiosity, and resolve, Rivera Tackle Company continued its evolution from a local jig producer to a full-scale custom lure and tackle operation.
Today, the company includes swim baits, glide baits, original soft plastics, a customizable fish-finder cover called the Sonar Sock, and even a bio-scent called Fish Stank as part of its impressive and growing inventory. Rivera also serves as the Texas representative for Major Craft, a Japanese rod and lure manufacturer that is quickly gaining visibility throughout the United States.
Despite the success and influence the company has garnered throughout the fishing community over the past ten years, Rivera makes it clear that faith is always at the forefront of his personal and professional endeavors.
“The lures, the company, it’s always second,” said Rivera.
Rivera’s faith, combined with a belief that there in an incredible amount of good within the industry, has led the company on a path that transcends fishing in recent months.
Earlier this year, when the opportunity arose to use his platform within the industry to help a family in need, Rivera felt moved to respond. The family had set up a GoFundMe account to help secure the cost of funeral expenses after the unexpected and tragic death of a father of two but still needed additional support.
“I asked myself, ‘what can we do? How can we fit in,'” said Rivera.
Rivera Tackle Company’s role was realized when the company auctioned off a custom tackle package, donating all proceeds to the family. In part, this helped the family raise more than enough to cover the funeral expenses.
Upon witnessing the good that could come from bringing anglers together for a cause that didn’t directly involve fishing, Rivera was ready to find another worthy cause to support.
“There’s gotta be more to it than this,” said Rivera, who quickly began looking for nearby organizations in need of assistance.
In his search, he was called to one particular agency: The Battered Women’s Foundation in Hurst, Texas.
“I just showed up, knocked on the door, told the woman working who I was and what we were hoping to do,” said Rivera. “It’s probably something that doesn’t make much sense — fishing and an organization that works with women who have been victims of domestic violence — but God really put it on our hearts this season.”
The woman Rivera spoke with told him that she had been praying for someone who would be able to offer support. While the Battered Women’s Foundation does not house individuals on-site, it does provide education and employment resources, counseling and transportation services, as well as basic daily living needs to women and children throughout the area.
Moved by this conversation, Rivera set out to solve another problem.
He ordered materials and, once again, began work on a line of unreleased fishing lures. These custom, hand-painted baits were then sold in sets of three with an asking price of $100.
Rivera received a great response after promoting the fundraiser on his Facebook page. Within a week, eleven custom sets were sold with several buyers offering above the $100 asking price.
In total, the Rivera Tackle Company was able to raise nearly $1,500 for the Battered Women’s Foundation. Rivera remains grateful for the opportunity to have supported an organization that will be able to put the funds to good use.
As for future fundraisers, Rivera is optimistic that these efforts will give anglers the opportunity to come together and support more great causes.
“We’re hoping we can be the catalyst that provides opportunities for the untapped potential in the fishing community.”
To support the Battered Women’s Foundation, please visit their website or call 817-284-8464.