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TPWD News Release — Nov. 7, 2005

Game Warden Service Recognized by Commission

EDITOR’S NOTE: At its Thursday, Nov. 3, public hearing the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopted the following resolution recognizing 110 years of service by Texas Game Wardens. Text of the resolution is provided below as background reference.

Resolution by the
Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Texas Game Wardens for 110 Years of Service to the Lone Star State

WHEREAS, The office of fish and oyster commissioner was created by the 24th Texas Legislature in 1895 to enforce the fish and oyster laws of this state; and

WHEREAS, I. P. Kibbe was selected as the first commissioner, at a salary of $150 per month, and he appointed deputies, including William Henry Sterling, one of the first conservation law enforcement officers in Texas, who earned a salary of up to $50 per month, garnered from the sale of licenses and Permits; and

WHEREAS, In 1899, the Fish and Oyster Commission was given jurisdiction over all public waters, including freshwater streams, lakes, and ponds, and four years later the commission's duties were expanded to include commercial shrimping; and

WHEREAS, The agency has undergone several name changes through the years; designated the Game, Fish, and Oyster Commissioner in 1907, Game, Fish, and Oyster Commission in 1929, and Game and Fish Commission in 1951, it was renamed the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department in 1963; and

WHEREAS, Two years later, the professionals now known as Texas game wardens were assigned the duty of promoting recreational water safety for persons and property in all recreational waters of the state; and

WHEREAS, In 1971, game wardens were formally recognized as Texas peace officers, with full duties and powers to preserve peace within the state, when the 62nd Texas Legislature extended that designation to all law enforcement officers commissioned by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission; and

WHEREAS, The modern-day equivalent of those early deputy fish and oyster commissioners, Texas game wardens have grown in number from six in 1919 to nearly 500 today; expanding their role to include water-safety enforcement 40 years ago, these dedicated men and women and their predecessors have played a vital role in wildlife conservation for more than a century; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission hereby honor Texas game wardens for 110 years of service to the Lone Star State and commend them for their efforts to safeguard the natural resources of this state for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations; and, be it further

RESOLVED, That an official copy of this resolution be prepared for Texas game wardens as an expression of high regard by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission.

APPROVED this the 3rd day of November 2005.