Joe Campbell has been honored as the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency 2013 Boating Officer of the Year while Greg Barker has been named Part-Time Boating Officer of the Year.
The recipients of the annual awards were announced by Darren Rider, TWRA Boating and Law Enforcement Division chief. Both officers serve in TWRA District 12, which has popular boating and fishing destinations. The officers will formally be presented their awards at a future meeting of the Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission.
Also honored as TWRA District Boating Officer selections were Ed Gover (District 11), Josh Landrum (District 21), Tim Hancock (District 22), Travis Cowan (District 31), Barry Baird (District 32), and Wayne Rich (District 42). These officers were selected for their efforts in law enforcement, education, outreach, accident investigation and training.
“It’s always a difficult situation when one officer is selected out of a group of officers that have all gone above and beyond the duty of ensuring Tennessee waters are safe and enjoyable for our Tennessee’s recreational boaters” said Chief Rider “All these officers are to be commended for their professionalism and efforts they displayed this year. All these officers had a fantastic year, but Joe really excelled in all aspects of his job.”
Officer Campbell’s assigned area encompasses 12 counties which are bisected by the Tennessee River. Officer Campbell’s law enforcement efforts were outstanding, according to Chief Rider. He inspected more than 600 vessels for compliance with Tennessee boating laws resulting in 34 citations and 52 warnings being issued. Officer Campbell also assisted boaters who were stranded for various reasons.
In the category of boating safety education, Officer Campbell excelled by monitoring and grading more than 400 boating education exams for Tennessee’s mandatory education program, he also taught five boating safety courses, certifying 597 students.
In public outreach efforts, he delivered five public programs and manned a public display distributing information and answering questions about boating safety. He developed a partnership with both the Henry County and Stewart County public school systems to provide in-school boater education to students to meet their education requirements.
Officer Campbell also attended basic and advanced interview and interrogation training to assist in the investigation of boating incidents. He uses these skills to help and train his fellow officers. He coordinated a high level training course for law enforcement officers to learn how to respond to an “officer down” call. He also assists in the training of officers at in-service by teaching combat casualty care and first aid.
In addition, Officer Campbell currently serves as president of the Tennessee Wildlife Officer’s Association. The organization supports Tennessee’s commissioned wildlife officers and promotes goodwill with the sportsmen and women of the state.
Officer Barker receives his award after being chosen from the statewide group of officers who serves as part-time boating officers for the TWRA. Also honored as part-time boating officer district selections were Terry Moore (District 11), Danny Ferrell (District 22); Tad Roberts (District 32), and Bryan Horton (District 42).
“Officers in the Agency’s part-time boating officer program play a vital role in the success of the Agency’s mission in recreational boating safety,” said Chief Rider. “They provide the extra manpower needed during peak hours of the boating season. Greg’s efforts were outstanding.”
Officer Barker checked more than boats for compliance and issued seven citations and 30 warnings for safety violations and conducted eight field sobriety tests on impaired operators and assisted on two BUI arrests. He also assisted boaters that needed help.
In his education efforts, he was able to partner with Carroll Academy, a school for troubled youth and teach and certify 85 students. Officer Barker has also been able to partner with the DARE program where he taught and certified students from Huntington’s elementary and middle schools. In addition, he taught and certified other students in Henry and Carroll county schools. He was able to teach seven classes which resulted in 252 students being certified.