The eyes of Texas are upon you. Twenty-eight new pairs to be exact.
A new class of state game wardens soon will be spreading across Texas to begin their law enforcement duties after completing seven months of intensive training at the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Game Warden Training Center in Hamilton County.
The 58th Game Warden class graduated in ceremonies at 9 a.m. Tuesday in the House of Representatives chamber at the Capitol in Austin. Featured speaker at the event was Daniel Hodge, first assistant Attorney General of Texas.
The new game wardens will be reporting for duty at stations spanning the state from East Texas to El Paso. While the primary duty of state game wardens is to enforce hunting and fishing laws and water safety regulations, they are fully commissioned peace officers who also respond to natural disasters, assist other local and state law enforcement agencies as well as conducting public outreach on a variety of conservation-related topics.
“Their much-needed presence will be felt as they assume duty assignments all across the state,” said Danny Shaw, assistant director of TPWD’s Law Enforcement Division. “Texas game wardens have played a vital role for over 118 years and these officers are prepared to carry on that rich heritage and tradition.
The new game wardens received 618 hours of instruction to meet the state-mandated training requirements for their basic peace officer certification including criminal and constitutional law; firearms; self defense; use of force; defensive driving; arrest, search and seizure; ethics and first aid.
In addition, their curriculum included another 700 to 750 hours of training related to wildlife and fisheries enforcement, the Texas Water Safety Act, wildlife and fisheries identification, public relations and communications, boat operation, ATV operation and specialized patrol tactics. The new wardens also have become certified hunter education and boater education instructors.
The 28 new wardens will bring TPWD’s Law Enforcement Division to its authorized strength of 532 game wardens, a group of men and women who are carrying on a tradition of service to Texas dating back to 1895.
These are the new game wardens, their home town, and the counties in which they will be stationed:
- Mark R. Anderson- Tyler, TX- Starr County
- Samuel D. Anderson- Nacogdoches, TX- Brewster County
- Michael I. Blevins- Hempstead, TX- Ward/Loving/Winkler County
- Joshua A. Bonney- Commerce, TX- Zapata County
- Roel Cantu Jr.- Edinburg, TX- El Paso County
- Jayme J. DeSchaaf- Liberty Hill, TX- Zapata County
- Travis J. Fountain- Nacogdoches, TX- Galveston County
- Mark W. Frayser- Cibolo, TX- Upshur County
- Jason Garcia- Schertz, TX- Maverick County
- Tommy R. Johnson- Wharton, TX- Liberty County
- Hsin-Wei Lin- College Station, TX- Tarrant County
- Derrick Lopez- Round Rock, TX- Cameron County
- Grant W. Moore- Jacksboro, TX- Edwards County
- John C. Newman- Stephenville, TX- Brewster County
- Jake E. Noxon- Austin, TX- Maverick County
- Jack F. Pearl- Athens, GA- Starr County
- Howard A. Pierce- Rockport, TX- Brooks County
- Travis R. Porter- Bridgeport, TX- Tarrant County
- Jennifer M. Provaznik- Gautier, MS- Galveston County
- Arturo O. Salinas- Uvalde, TX- Hudspeth County
- Coby J. Sanders- Amarillo, TX- Brewster County
- Jeremy D. Schwalk- Lubbock, TX- Presidio County
- Brendan A. Shoars- Abilene, TX- Ector/Crane County
- Justin R. Solis- Rockport, TX- Webb County
- David A. Stokes- Nashville, TN- Cameron County
- Zachary R. Temple- Lufkin, TX- Presidio County
- Colton R. Thomas- Pleasanton, TX- Presidio County
- Emily R. Zaunbreche- Houston, TX- Kinney County