Why Did You Join the DIVAs?

Let us know your story!

Email us at membership@divawow.org with your story, a picture of yourself if you want, your title or job with the DIVAs if you’re a volunteer, website if you have one, and the title of your website and we’ll post your stories online too. Joining the DIVAs has been a special moment for all of us, and we’d love to hear yours!

A word from Judy Rhodes

Oh the fragrant smell of gun powder, the power of the shot and the thrill of the connect with the target…almost compares to the fun to be had with the DIVAs.

Outdoors, active, alive and talking to the world to encourage women and families to try, share and enjoy the challenges shooting has to offer.

There is nothing like a high five from a fellow woman, when we celebrate our successes. In these troubling times when the future of shooting sports, gun ownership and shell purchases seem threatened, the mission of the DIVAs to sustain our hunting heritage is critical.

DIVAs connect with women from around the world with the common thread of the ‘joy of shooting’. Whether you choose target shooting, self defense or hunting, many lasting friendships will be forged by participating in a DIVA event.

When you meet a DIVA you have met a powerful woman who enjoys the outdoors and the thrills that life has to offer!

Read some special stories from our members! And then, share yours!

While doing a Juice Plus+ booth at the Mesquite Gun Show, I was approached by some smart looking ladies all dressed up with “Bling”. They proceeded to tell me about the Divas and I took some literature on the club. When arriving home, I showed it to my husband, A.Y., and he said this looks great!. So I went to their last competition event and had a great time. Now 5 years later, I still enjoy the women, shooting, and many fun events. Most people are amazed that I’m a member of Divas, but many are ready to come out and enjoy the Clinics.

Judy A

IT WAS LIKE A BUMBLE BEE BEING DRAWN TO THE HONEY!! I was volunteering at a trade show – Bass Pro in Grapevine – for Ducks Unlimited. The DIVAS had a booth across from us. They were having so much fun, they were beautiful women making a difference in outdoor activities, I just had to join!! WOW – I’ve been so fortunate to know all who are members!  It makes me a better person in knowing all the DIVAS! Going on my 3rd year of membership!!!

Janna F

I became a DIVA through Ray’s (my spouse) encouragement. It took him about four years to convince me that the DIVAs would accept me. Why didn’t I do it sooner? I have never been a women’s’ club type as I am an outdoors woman. WOW, was I wrong about the DIVAs! Since I joined, I have had the most fabulous year of fun and lots of encouragement from the Sistas. I am ready to become a life member, if I do maybe I will live longer to get my money’s worth. Ha-ha!!

Liz G

I became a Diva by calling a phone number out of the NRA magazine.  I told them I was looking for a club or something that has to do with women shooters.  I had just learned how to shoot back in 2000 and wanted to target shoot with other women.  It’s the smartest phone call I’ve ever made.  I have met so many wonderful friends and the ones that know how to shoot help those that don’t.  It is an awesome organization and I feel privileged to be a part of it.

Nancy S

I was dating a guy who has a ranch and we had plans to go hunting.  So – being the resourceful (and sly) girl that I am, I found a shooting instructor to teach me so that I didn’t look like a total novice when I went out to shoot some birds.  I took several lessons from Gaylon Capps in Dallas @ Elm Fork Shooting Sports and during one lesson, he looked at me and said “There is a really cool group of women who shoot together. They have a lot of fun and they are really a great group.  You should go to one of their clinics.”  Well, the rest is history.  I went to the next clinic, signed up, and became a DIVA! My life is richer because of it and I have met life time friends that I will have forever.  DIVAS ROCK! 

Lynn D

In August 2005, I met the DIVAS at the TTHA convention in Houston. My husband and I were exhibiting our partnership hunting business, Select Wilderness Adventures – our booth was next to the DIVAS. Five minutes later I became a DIVA. I was very new to shooting & hunting, so was anxious to become involved with these vibrant women. A year later, I organized the W. PA DIVAS first shotgun clinic, with Judy’s help, and became the W. PA Liaison. I love the sisterhood of the DIVAS and am honored to be a liaison and be so involved in the organization. My dream is to build a large liaison group here in Pennsylvania. I love the friendships and mentoring which is what being a DIVA is all about!

Cynthia D

Here is my DIVA beginning:

In 2002, we had friends who owned and African Import business. They had set up a booth at the Dallas Safari Convention. My husband, Brian, helped them set up and I was to come help the next day.

Judy Rhodes and Cheryl Long were setting up the DIVA booth next door. Always the recruiter, Judy told my husband, “Your wife has to join the Texas Women’s Shooting Sports.” Brian told me this over the phone.

When I arrived the next day, I met Judy and Cheryl, wrote a check and I became a DIVA. Ever since, I’ve loved being a DIVA and have enjoyed meeting all the new members.

Belinda A

I have been a member of the DIVA’S for some time and it had been a wonderful experience. I love all the friends that made and the new things that I have had the opportunity to try. It wasn’t until I volunteered for the Big Brother’s and Sister’s Kids Camp and the fall shooting clinic of this year did I realize that I was truly a DIVA. found that being a DIVA is more than just shooting, shopping, attending clinics, and parties. To me it is about being part of a true sisterhood of women who want to make a difference in the people that they come in contact with. Being a DIVA is very enriching and rewarding to me because I get so much out of being able to help others become more educated about what we do and to become more confident in themselves. am sure that it is safe to say that the more I do with and for the DIVA’S the more of a DIVA I will become.

Kimberly M

I had no choice. HAHAH If you have ever met Anginette you would understand. I met Anginette at a Basic Pistol Class at the Cherry Creek Shooting Club. Anginette already knew the staff there and I had seen the brochure on the Divas so after the class we had a chance to visit. I was really impressed with a group of girls teaching girls anything about the outdoors, shooting was of course my focus at that time. A couple of weeks later my husband and I went out to shoot and there was Anginette teaching another girl to shoot. Once Anginette recognized my husand and I you would have thought we had know each other all our lives. The friendships you form as a Diva are not just girls in a club but true friends you can count on to be there for you. My step-daughter is now a Diva also. Three forms of communication, telephone, telegraph and tell a woman, Divas love to spread the word.

Elaine F

I was standing at my booth at the Shot Show a few years back. A few ladies dressed with the famous Texas hats, big warm-smiles and stopped and asked if I would like to encourage women to participate in shooting sports. They related to me that if a women is comfortable with a gun in the house, then the family would be. Keeping and promoting our hunting heritage is important to me. I live in a rural agriculture center, yet I know my grand kids are not encouraged in society or school with the right messages concerning guns and their uses. If we do not connect with the women and the next generations, we will continue to loose our heritiage and the righ to bear arms and protect ourselves. “Hey, do you want to join the DIVAS?”. The answer was YES. I whipped my check book out. Their big smiles, warm friendly personalities and hugs shared the promise of close future friendships.

My membership helps to promote shooting sports; but I also now belong to an active group of caring, fun ladies.

Now a trip to the Shot Show is not complete without seeing my fellow shooting sisters and catching up on the years activities. I wished I lived closer to the home base of Texas, but where ever I go now, I know I can find a DIVA making a different in others lives!

And the best part is that the warm-smiles and lasting friendships go with the membership!

Suzanne S.

I guess a about two or three years ago a coworker and I accidentally met up with the USA Mens shooting team in Kerrville (ok we were at the bar at the YO Ranch). After talking with them for a while, they encouraged us to find a group to learn to shotgun sports with because there really weren’t a lot of women out there shooting. When we got back to town, we did some looking on the internet and found the DIVAs and couldn’t wait till the next shooting clinic to see what it was all about. I believe I even made some phone calls to find out more. Well time passed, got busy, forgot about it, etc, until last year when I was like “forget this I am calling them up and going to the next event!” I can’t remember which came first – the membership drive at Cantina Laredo or the DIVA Fall Clinic – but I went to both and joined and had so much fun! Then I “got busy” again and didn’t participate in anything until this summer’s Fun Shoot, where I participated in the shoot AND volunteered to help with the raffle. It has been all downhill from there! Only kidding! It’s been a blast! I wouldn’t say I really became a DIVA ’til this summer when I actively started participating in all the events and volunteering and fully embraced the insanity! I have met so many interesting and fun people! It is always an adventure! And as a side effect my shooting has gotten better! Can’t beat that!=)

Megan C

Judy Rhodes approached me at a Dallas Safari Club function and said,”I want you to be a DIVA. I am starting an organization for women andI want the founding members.” Of course I was flattered and told her,”hell yes!” Since that time, we have done more to help educate women and girls, plus so much fun I cannot even try to remember all of the road trips and gun courses and laughter we have shared. Now this group has grown so much and it is so rewarding to have been a part of the foundation. My children, Hunter, Gigi, and Ellie, have gained so much knowledge due to the fact that I have been part of this group of women who really care about the future of the shooting sports with our youth. This organization is a true sisterhood. I have gained so many friends and knowledge, (not to mention hangovers) from the contacts and travels. I can’t thank Judy enough for always including me in the adventures and boy what a wild journey it has been! From the YO Ranch to South Africa to Spain, etc..etc..etc……I adore this group and wouldn’t trade all these memories for anything! Let’s make a bunch more!!!

Ellyn H

I was first introduced to the Diva’s organization when I went with my Aunt Donna to a ‘Divas’ shooting clinic. My aunt, whose husband works in management at Cabela’s, had attended a Diva’s event actually at Cabela’s. I had not been interested in hunting until lately. Recently, in the past two years actually, my husband has expanded our ice business into wild game processing in the slow winter months. Being around the end product of hunting, I gained a taste and appreciation for venison. I thought I might like to try it out…but, I was afraid of guns. The shooting clinic that I attended was at a shooting range in the metro area helped me overcome some jitters. We shot rifles, shot guns, bb guns and pistols of all calibers. We learned to fly and spin cast. It was fun! It was my first time to ever shoot a gun and, I might add, I was in shock when I actually hit some of those orange things flying across the sky. I didn’t think that I would be consistent enough to join Diva’s at that time, until I came home and shot my first deer! Now, I’m hooked, I have buck fever. The thing that pushed me to actually join Diva’s was the conversation that I had with our county’s economic development director. Nature sports are where it’s at in Rural-Texas-America, at least for men. But, we intend to broaden our scope and include woman’s activities. The land, outfitters, lodges and opportunities where I live are top notch. We don’t want the boys having all the fun. Who knows what the future holds?

Tammie T

In my transition to divorced status ( check one __ single __ married __DIVORCED), I realized out of “we”, I now had to manage “me”. So, I created two “Check It Out” files. As I would sort thru the abundant media that passed thru my house, I’d separate my “check it outs” between activities and restaurants. An article on the Divas was in my “CIO” activities file for awhile until…

My exterminator mentioned he hunted in East Texas. In his hunting history there were Divas….I scurried to my “CIO” file and asked, “These Divas? Those women who promote hunting and shooting sports for other women?” He asked me if I was a hunter/shooter…I wasn’t then.

Using my exterminator’s Diva contact, she recommended I speak to Judy R. or Cheryl L. If I remember correctly, it was Cheryl that suggested the Diva Clinic (available spring and fall) as an optimum opportunity to explore my interests/talents in shooting. Since my intro to the Divas, they have allowed exposure to more than hunting/shooting. The Divas promote and want to educate the standards of: Fly Fishing, Bow hunting/shooting, Bird Dog Training and Pistol shooting.

My Diva membership provides me with new experiences, new relationships and a new ME! “CIO”

Dinah V

I was working on a documentary about women and guns and naturally the research for this film led my path almost immediately to Ms. Judy P Rhodes. One thirty minute phone conversation with this woman changed my life forever. Not only did I get to spend amazing time with Judy and the Divas while making the documentary about them, I was adopted into the sisterhood and have been a member and supporter for several years now. This group of women is one of heart-felt, sincerity, and grace – with Texas size humor. Divas has the kind of comradery that even men’s groups cannot rival on their best day. Our organizations mission is in full force at all times as we seek a better future for all women not just ourselves, and we love and support each other on an individual level that reflects the true hearts of our members. I am a Diva for life – and I am so thankful for my sisters!

Anna B

Honey, I did not BECOME a DIVA, I was BORN a DIVA!! My daddy (God love and rest his soul) could have told you that decades ago!!! I am an only child and have been adored all my life. But having no siblings has left me empty on many fronts. A few years ago, my precious husband and I were having lunch at a little bakery. As we went to our car, we noticed a poster in a boutique next door. It was announcing a shooting clinic to be held at what was then BACKWOODS up on HWY 380. I had shot dove with him many times, but was not “a hunter”. Anyway, it was at a time in my life when I needed a hobby and this seemed like a God-send. It has turned out to be so. The Diva women have become the “sisters” that I never had. I love them all and know that I could call on any of them at any time to be there for me in any supportive role. My advice is to always be open to new opportunities and adventures as you never know how they will improve and enrich your life. I’m still not “a hunter”, but I have a whole bunch of new beautiful women in my life. And damn it, I’ve become a pretty good shot!!!

Gwen S

Born with a love of the outdoors, and a tendency toward the “tomboy” side, I fell in love with the DIVA organization due to their commitment to women, the outdoors, and shooting. I felt that this organization would not judge me for my love of the outdoors, hunting, and my passion for shooting. I joined through the website and first met JR, Pearl, Cheryl, Lynn, and many more of the ladies when I made the trip to the Texas Trophy Hunters Expo in Ft Worth in 2006. It was there that I found that I had joined a “sisterhood” of women with so many similar interests and stories. However, because I was working through my Bachelor’s Degree, I found myself short on time to play with the girls and really get involved until 2008. I have a strong commitment to grow membership, and promote the organization through activities that will give women a regular place to meet, learn, and most of all – have fun! I participate in registered events in the NSSA, NSCA, and ATA. I am also a member of Quail Unlimited and the National Wild Turkey Federation, Women in the Outdoors program. I serve on the Board of Directors at Fort Worth Trap & Skeet in Fort Worth, Texas, and am a member at Arlington Sportsman’s Club. My daughter Morgan will be joining us this year as a new DIVA.

Rhonda B
Kim J

In September 2005 I was in the process of obtaining a loan for the purchase of a loft in downtown Dallas.  The broker that I was dealing with was located in Houston and, as luck would have it, Hurricane Rita intervened.  I was under-the-gun (no pun intended) to obtaining financing since my contract on the loft required that I close no later than October 15th.  I took a stab at contacting an FHA affiliated loan officer and she told me although she couldn’t broker a loan, she knew a broker who could help me.  It must have been my lucky day as I was referred to Suzanne Brayman.  During the course of our many discussions regarding my loan and closing I mention to Suzanne that I had obtained my CHL.  She told me about the DIVAs and invited me to join.  On October 13th I closed on my loft and I joined the DIVAs shortly thereafter.  I had no idea what the DIVAs were about except that they liked guns.  The first DIVA event that I attended was the 2005 halloween party at the Dallas Gun Club…boy were my eyes opened. I was delighted to find that these women were just as crazy as I was. One of the members wore a hospital gown with a big fake butt sticking out the open back.  Kelly Dietel dressed as a hurricane!  I had finally found a group of women with whom I could relate and who were fun to be with.   I don’t know about you…but I believe that everything that happens, happens for a reason. Proud to be a DIVA.

Kim JLife Member

Texas Parks and Wildlife has a workshop that I attended once. It is called Becoming an Outdoors Woman. I could pick from a number of classes to take at the workshop. I decided to pick one that had to do with shooting. A few years later, I was invited by an organization to shoot for fun in Houston. I asked one of my guy friends to go to the gun range and rent a gun with me. He showed me some shooting pointers. The first day of the lucky score competition was only for women. The next day was for men and women as a team. We both won guns (.22 pistols) that year. I joined the organization that put the event on. I went back and shot the following year and got 3rd place. I also won two guns but can’t remember the situation. The organization went under not too long after that. I wanted to get into an organization that focused on shooting. I knew about the DIVAS from attending a shoot in previous years. I decided to join. Besides being a shooting organization, I remembered the lady that told me about it was so outgoing and bubbly. I am that way so my interest was raised even more. Of course, when I joined I found out that lady was the founder, Judy Rhodes. Once I became a member, I thought about becoming a life member. I made that commitment and am so glad I did. Being a part of the DIVAS definitely has made me feel more like a DIVA. I would have to say that I have seen women who are not divas in their lives become DIVAS. This is just one of the many things I love. Every woman is a diva but some don’t know it. When one comes in, we make them DIVAS. I love the DIVAS and being a DIVA. I hope to bring more women to the DIVAS throughout my life, just like the founding DIVA did
for me.

Kelli D
Anginette J
I entered a new phase in my life where I had more time to devote to a new hobby. Focus more on me and what I really wanted to do in life, including my hobbies. I shot shotguns in the past and decided to shoot again. I always loved shooting in the past. But now I wanted to learn the games of shotgun shooting sports and take it to another level.

A girlfriend of mine gave me the name of an instructor she knew. I signed up for a shotgun lesson with Jeannie Almond in 2000. I wanted to shoot in a shotgun League and wanted to learn the rules, not to mention dust off the cobwebs. After my 1st session, Jeannie told me I was a natural shooter and she knew of a new group forming called the DIVAS. I attended my 1st DIVA event. I didn’t realize it was the 1st Clinic and found myself in a “shoot off” at the end of the day with another DIVA. I fell in love immediately.  With both my new shotgun and the DIVAS! The women welcomed me as DIVAS can only do and helped me feel more at ease at an event where everyone seemed to know each other. I quickly found out what DIVA sisterhood is all about. I also found out that more than half of the other women knew no one else. It was their 1st time too. DIVAS make it seem so easy. It was no longer a thought but a choice, I chose to become a member right then. To this day am so glad I did.  I even became a Life a couple of years after. Now I share my love of shooting and the support of DIVA WOW with other women. I am truly blessed to have found this amazing group of sisters.  Come see us.  More importantly, just do it…become a member.  You will be glad you did! Love from your DIVA sister, Bunny

Anginette JLife Member