Stephen Graves, of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, has been honored by the Shikar–Safari Club International as its 2013 Tennessee Wildlife Law Enforcement Officer of the Year.
Mr. Graves serves as a wildlife officer in Hardin County. He was recognized at the February meeting of the Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission.
The annual award from the conservation-based organization honors the officer whose efforts during the year display outstanding performance and achievement among TWRA law enforcement personnel. Mr. Graves is among distinguished group of officers nationwide to receive the honor.
He was involved in more than 50 big game cases, close to 30 sport fishing cases, and 14 boating-related cases during the year. Graves worked with landowners in Hardin County on a variety of issues including wildlife management, pond management, wildlife damage, and wild hog control. He assisted with information and technical assistance regarding planting and site locations.
He is active in the Hardin County Community as it relates to public outreach programs. He organizes a free youth fishing rodeo and partners with a local landowner to host a free youth hunting event which encompasses three days. He contributes to the community newspaper where he addresses topics such as wildlife management, hunting safety and strategy, and boating safety. He assists with a youth fishing clinic where youth are taught about fish and fishing as well as the aquatic education program offered through the Hardin County 4-H Club. He also assists with the county’s 4-H wildlife judging team.
Mr. Graves works with TWRA officers from surrounding counties and with Hardin County’s location, with officers from neighboring states. His attention to detail and excitement for his career serves as an inspiration to his peers.
Shikar-Safari Club International was founded in 1952 for the purpose of advancing knowledge concerning wildlife of the world, independently and in cooperation with zoological societies, universities and museums. Each year, the club sponsors an award for the Wildlife Officer of the Year in all 50 states and 10 Canadian provinces.