New Jersey Law Enforcement Officer Wins Prestigious NWTF Award

New Jersey Law Enforcement Officer Wins Prestigious NWTF Award

National Wild Turkey Federation
National Wild Turkey Federation

NASHVILLE, Tenn. –-( The National Wild Turkey Federation has named Conservation Officer Steven K. Sutton of Great Meadows, N.J., its 2011 New Jersey Wildlife Law Enforcement Officers of the Year.

The NWTF’s Wildlife Law Enforcement Officer of the Year awards program honors the nation’s top wildlife officers in appreciation for their dedication to conserving wildlife and upholding the law.

As a state NWTF Wildlife Enforcement Officer of the Year, Sutton was among 21 winners who were eligible to win the NWTF’s National Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Award during the NWTF’s 35th annual National Convention and Sport Show recently held in Nashville, Tenn.

The national law enforcement officer of the year winner was announced during the NWTF’s 35th annual National Convention and Sport Show recently held in Nashville, Tenn.

Cpl. Roger Tate of Arkansas was awarded the 2011 National Law Enforcement Officer of the Year award.

The 2011 State Law Enforcement Officers of the Year recognized during the show included:

  • Alabama — Officer Keilan Lord of Centre, Ala.
  • Arkansas — Cpl. Roger Tate of Evening Shade, Ark.
  • California — Warden Don Powers of Fort Bragg, Calif.
  • Delaware — Cpl. Gavin Davis of Seaford, Del.
  • Georgia — Ranger First Class James McLaughlin of McRae, Ga.
  • Idaho — Officer Korey Owens of Preston, Idaho
  • Illinois — Officer David A. Hyatt of Newton, Ill.
  • Indiana — Officer Mac Spainhour of Clarksville, Ind.
  • Louisiana — Sgt. William Roberts of Slaughter, La.
  • Michigan — Officer Andrew Bauer of Bridgman, Mich.
  • Missouri — Conservation Agent Mark Henry of West Plains, Mo.
  • New Jersey — Officer Steven K. Sutton of Great Meadows, N.J.
  • New York — Officer Steven Bartoszewski of Watertown, N.Y.
  • North Carolina — Master Officer Bryan Scott Loflin of Lincolnton, N.C.
  • Pennsylvania — Officer Christopher Ivicic of Houtzdale, Pa.
  • South Carolina — Pfc. Andrew Godowns of Darlington, S.C.
  • South Dakota — Regional Supervisor Mike Kintigh of Rapid City, S.D.
  • Texas — Game Warden Adam Clark of Dalhart, Texas
  • Washington — Officer Dustin Prater of Tacoma, Wash.
  • West Virginia — Officer Ronnie Runyon of Fort Gay, W.Va.
  • Wisconsin — Conservation Warden Robert Jumbeck of Alma, Wis.

The NWTF also recognized two wildlife officers who lost their lives in the line of duty, while doing a job that most law-abiding outdoors enthusiasts take for granted.

Last March, USDA Forest Service Law Enforcement Officer Christopher Andy Upton, of Monroe, Ga., was on a routine patrol in the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest. Two men were hunting coyotes with a high-powered rifle, equipped with night vision.

The men apparently mistook Officer Upton for game and shot and killed him. He was 37 years old.

In November, Pennsylvania Wildlife Officer David L. Grove was shot and killed on a rural road west of Gettysburg, Pa.

Officer Grove pulled over a pickup truck after suspecting the men inside were poaching. The driver stepped out of the vehicle and shot Officer Grove with a pistol when he tried to cuff him.

The shooter, a convicted felon, later told police he didn’t want to go back to jail for illegally carrying a gun. Officer Grove was only 31.

The convention was themed “Our Youth. Our Legacy.” to honor the next generation of hunters and conservationists. MidwayUSA was the official convention sponsor.

The NWTF is the leader in upland wildlife habitat conservation in North America. The NWTF is a nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving the wild turkey and preserving our hunting heritage.

Through dynamic partnerships with state, federal and provincial wildlife agencies, the NWTF and its members have helped restore wild turkey populations throughout North America, spending more than $331 million to conserve nearly 16 million acres of habitat. Wild turkeys and hundreds of other species of upland wildlife, including quail, deer, grouse, pheasant and songbirds, benefit from this improved habitat.

For more information about the NWTF, call 1-800-THE-NWTF.

2011 Convention Sponsors

MidwayUSA – Official Sponsor
Academy Sports and Outdoors, Bass Pro Shops, Bank of America, Benelli USA, Browning-USRAC, Call Makers and Collectors Association of America, Chevrolet, Federal Premium Ammunition, Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center, HuntVe, Marlin Firearms Company, Mossberg & Sons Inc., Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau, Nationwide, The Outdoor Connection Inc., Remington Arms Company Inc., Rivers Edge Treestands, SHE Outdoor Apparel, U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance, Weatherby Inc., Wild Turkey Bourbon, Winchester/Olin Corporation