Those We Honor

You’ll find more than just fishing celebrities in this list. One can make a significant impact
on the lives of many without ever being well known. It is important to honor all of
those who had a great influence on the great sport of fishing, whether famous or not.
Corporate advances tend to be much more visible to us. For it’s their products that
shape the evolution of the sport of fishing.

Paul Thorne

Paul Thorne

Inducted 2021

From a young age, Paul Thorne pursued his passion for fishing with an intense focus.  As a child, he was often seen riding his bike to local area lakes with fishing rod and tackle box in hand.  As an adult, Paul’s second passion became anything to do with business.  It’s been said that Paul obtained his keen interest for business when he and his younger brother built a make believe store out of old wood planks at the cabin.  Later in life, that playful event became a reality.

In 1976, Paul graduated from Bemidji State University.  After five years working in county government, Paul and his brother Gregg, started a custom fishing rod business.  In 1981, they opened a small retail store to teach rod building classes and sell fishing rod components.  After two years, it developed into a full-blown retail store called Thorne Bros. Custom Rod & Tackle.  It wasn’t long before it became known as one of the top destination stores, specializing in high quality, hand built fishing rods and highly sought after Muskie tackle.  The store pioneered many different fishing advancements including being the first to design, manufacture and market graphite ice fishing rods.  In the late 1980’s, they opened an additional store called The Fly Angler, catering specifically to fly fishermen and women.  Thorne also started Muskie Fever, a mail order catalog that offered hard to find Muskie tackle and equipment.

Paul co-founded MarCum Technologies in 1998.  Paul would fulfill the role as President, while his partners worked on designing sonar units and underwater viewing systems.  The MarCum team went on to develop many new products incorporating important new features and obtaining multiple utility patents.  In 2008, the MarCum team sold the business, and the brand has continued to grow.

In 2012, after a lifetime in the fishing industry, Paul decided to semi-retire and move to northern Minnesota with a desire to spend more time on the water.  The quiet days didn’t last long though, as the call to create beckoned once more.  In 2018, he decided to re-join brother Gregg for one last adventure, together forming Two Brothers Innovations.  As of 2021, Two Brothers Innovations has designed and marketed over sixty-five different fishing rod models for winter and summer use under the Elliott and 2B Fishing brands.  Their products have grown quickly and gained recognition for quality and performance while marketed and sold through a regional dealer network.

Throughout his career, Paul has always remained an obsessive angler.  Although he considers himself a multi species angler, his lifetime passion has been catching Muskies.  He has fished throughout the upper Midwest and Canada and won and placed in many tournaments.  He still finds keen interest in learning new techniques.  In recent years, competitive Walleye fishing has become a new passion.   Thorne has recently started fishing local Walleye tournaments and is invigorated by the new challenge.