Brook Brown, a state Department of Game, Fish and Parks conservation officer serving the Hamlin County area, has been named the 2012 South Dakota Boating Officer of the Year by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators.
“Hamlin County is home to Lake Poinsett, one of the busiest boating recreation lakes in the state, and Brook has worked long and arduous hours to ensure the safety of those seeking an enjoyable day on the water,” said Brandon Gust, GFP boating law administrator.
The summer of 2011 was a challenging boating year for Brown. Record high water levels created tension on Lake Poinsett as many lakeside residents faced devastating flood conditions. Lake levels peaked about five feet above the ordinary high water mark and remained high throughout the summer.
Gust noted that Brown makes hundreds of personal contacts with boaters each year to check on safety requirements. Brown works with area media to share information on boating safety, and works with groups and individuals involved in recreational boating.
“Ensuring the safe use of our great water resources is an important part of every conservation officer’s work, especially during the summer,” Gust said. “Brook’s outstanding work is a fine example of the efforts of our officers to ensure public safety.”
The National Association of State Boating Law Administrators’ award is presented annually to the boating law enforcement officer who has made outstanding contributions to the field of boating law enforcement.
The awards program consists of three levels: state, regional and national. State nominees are selected by the state boating law administrator. State nominees move to regional competition, where they are reviewed, and one winner per region is selected by the three regional awards committees. Regional award winners are submitted to NASBLA’s Awards Committee for review and selection of the recipient of the national award.