Michael Hummert Named Marine Law Enforcement Officer of the Year

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AUSTIN — Anyone who spends much time on Lake Texoma in North Texas likely has run into Game Warden Michael Hummert, the 2012 Texas Parks and Wildlife Department marine law enforcement officer of the year.

TPWD Executive Director Carter Smith presented the award to Hummert at the May 24 meeting of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission in Austin.

Warden Hummert, who has served as a game warden for five years, is stationed in Grayson County and spends about 500 hours a year patrolling the sprawling lake along the Texas-Oklahoma border. During his time on the lake, Hummert has made six boating while intoxicated cases, including one that netted the defendant a third-degree felony conviction because he had nine prior DWI charges on his record.

“Because of Michael’s streamlining of the BWI process by utilizing the TPWD game warden station on Lake Texoma, through videotaping and blood sampling, most of his BWI cases are plead out before ever going to trial,” Smith said.

The felony BWI case came after the warden responded to a boating accident on the lake. Another of the BWI cases resulted from Hummert’s successful pursuit of a large, high-speed “cigarette” boat from Texas to Oklahoma waters.

First on the scene of another serious boating accident, Hummert and his partner jumped into the water and steadied a boater’s broken neck while at the same time coordinating with other first responders to get a medical helicopter on the scene.

“Because of Lake Texoma’s sharing a common boundary with Oklahoma, Michael has become a great asset to not only this state, but to the citizens of Oklahoma as well,” Smith said.

Hummert has assisted in several search efforts for drowning victims on the big lake, including two in Oklahoma waters where he was the first officer on the scene.

In addition to law enforcement work where life and death hang in the balance, Hummert hosts a Boy Scouts of America “Safety at Sea” event, with more than 75 scouts receiving valuable instruction in water safety issues and other marine topics.

As the 2012 TPWD marine enforcement officer of the year, Hummert is now eligible to receive the Southern States Boating Law Administrators Association’s Officer of the Year Award. If chosen for the SSBLA award, he would be nominated for the National Association of Boating Law Administrators’ Officer of the Year Award, to be presented in September.

“Michael has a great working partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, enforcing the closure of the Big Mineral Army of Lake Texoma in protecting migratory bird wintering areas,” Smith said.

A native of Grandview, in Johnson County south of Fort Worth, Hummert and his wife live in Pottsboro.