Col. Martin Garabedian: (603) 271-3128
Jane Vachon: (603) 271-3211
June 07, 2011
Fish and Game Announces Conservation Officers of the Year
CONCORD, N.H. -- Two N.H. Fish and Game Department Conservation Officers were recently honored as New Hampshire's Conservation Officers of the Year – Conservation Officer Bradley Morse of Holderness, and Conservation Officer Todd Szewczyk of Hollis.
Fish and Game Conservation Officer Bradley Morse of Holderness was honored as New Hampshire's Shikar-Safari Club International Wildlife Officer of the Year for 2010. Morse patrols the towns of Holderness, Meredith, Moultonborough, Center Harbor and Sandwich. Morse was praised for his depth of skills and a personable, outgoing approach that helps him promote positive public relations as he enforces wildlife laws and protects natural resources, setting a good example for younger officers.
"Morse is an incredibly motivated Conservation Officer," said Col. Martin Garabedian, Chief of Fish and Game Law Enforcement. "His enthusiasm and constant drive for a teamwork approach to every challenge is refreshing. Without question, Officer Morse cares about both the people he works with and the people he serves."
Morse is a licensed paramedic, training he received while serving in the U.S. Army as a medic. "This training and experience have proven to be valuable assets for Fish and Game and for the citizens who have had the good fortune to have received medical care from him during backcountry rescue missions," said Garabedian.
Morse is also a firearms instructor, a defensive tactics instructor, a field training officer, and a member of the Advanced Search and Rescue Team, the Fish and Game Dive Team and the Department's Honor Guard. On his own time, he volunteers for the Holderness Fire Department and the Waterville Valley Ski Patrol.
"Morse is an officer who exhibits good common sense, dedication to duty and loyalty to a fault," said Garabedian. "No matter how difficult or challenging a mission assigned to him, he will take it on and always exceed our expectations."
The Shikar-Safari Club International is a worldwide organization dedicated to the protection, enhancement and preservation of wildlife, with emphasis on endangered and threatened species and promoting the enforcement of conservation laws and regulations.
Conservation Officer Todd Szewczyk of Hollis was honored as New Hampshire's 2010 Northeast Conservation Law Enforcement Chiefs Association Conservation Officer of the Year. Szewczyk (pronounced "shef-check") is a 16-year veteran of the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. He previously worked as a Police Officer in Milford, N.H. His Fish and Game patrol area includes the towns of Hollis, Merrimack, Amherst, Brookline, Mason, Greenville, Milford, Wilton Mont Vernon and Lyndeborough; this densely populated region is one of the most active patrol areas in the state.
"Officer Szewczyk rose to meet the challenges of his demanding patrol area while always maintaining a high level of professionalism," said Col. Martin Garabedian, chief of Fish and Game Law Enforcement. "His creative investigative skills, effective interview techniques and thorough evidence collection capabilities have helped him produce some of the highest-quality investigations within our state."
Szewczyk pioneered cutting-edge techniques involving use of the Internet to help solve wildlife crimes, helping him successfully investigate and prosecute illegal deer cases that began in 2008. The challenges these cases presented may have discouraged some officers, but Szewczyk refused to give up. His determined detective work paid off when confessions were given by those involved.
Szewczyk's diverse skills include certification as a field training officer, a background investigator, firearms instructor, firearms armorer and a Personal Breathalyzer Test instructor. In the past year, Szewczyk has taken on added responsibility as the Assistant Chief Firearms Instructor for Fish and Game's Law Enforcement Division.
"Through his hard work and dedication, Officer Szewczyk has earned the respect of his law enforcement peers and the general public within his patrol area," said Garabedian. "He is a truly professional wildlife officer whose exemplary work is an asset to our Department."
The Northeast Conservation Law Enforcement Chiefs Association represents chiefs and command staff of 22 law enforcement organizations throughout the northeastern U.S. and Canada. Its purpose is to encourage enhanced law enforcement cooperation among the member states and provinces, to study and exchange fish and wildlife law enforcement techniques and perspectives, and to promote cooperation and understanding among allied agencies in wildlife conservation and management.
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