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Aug-25-2011 21:33printcomments

OSP Fish and Wildlife Trooper First Oregon Recipient of Award From National Fish and Wildlife Foundation

Oregon State Police (OSP) Senior Trooper Mark Prodzinski
Oregon State Police (OSP) Senior Trooper Mark Prodzinski
PHOTO: Oregon State Police

(Portland, Oregon) - Oregon State Police (OSP) Senior Trooper Mark Prodzinski was the first-ever recipient from Oregon to receive the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation's "Guy Bradley Award" recognizing the trooper's dedication and public service in protecting the nation's natural resources and advancement of wildlife conservation. Today's presentation was made at the annual Oregon Governors Fund for the Environment Award Ceremony held in Portland with Governor John Kitzhaber and U.S. Attorney Dwight C. Holton in attendance.

The "Guy Bradley Award" is given in the spirit of Guy Bradley, the first wildlife law enforcement agent killed (1905) while performing his duties to protect the nation's wildlife. Since 1988, the Foundation's award seeks to recognize extraordinary individuals who have made an outstanding lifetime contribution to wildlife law enforcement, wildlife forensics, or investigative techniques that warrant national recognition. The award is presented each year to an individual from one state agency and one federal agency.

Involved in fish and wildlife enforcement for over 30 years, Senior Trooper Prodzinski, age 50, has worked out of the Madras work site since 1993. He started his career with OSP in 1983 when he was first assigned as a Patrol Trooper at the Klamath Falls office. Prior to full time employment with OSP, he worked as a seasonal cadet with the OSP Fish & Wildlife Division from 1979 through 1983. OSP quickly noticed his passion for protecting Oregon's natural resources and transferred him two years later to the Fish & Wildlife Division at the Portland office.

Prodzinski's accomplishments include significant contributions to safeguarding and restoring fishery resources, big game and migratory waterfowl enforcement, and help addressing other issues such as water pollution and habitat protection. Notable highlights include:

  • During his 8 years working out of the Portland office, Prodzinski was active in Columbia River Basin issues including the protection of critical salmon, steelhead, and sturgeon stocks.
  • After transferring to his current assignment at the Madras work site in 1993, Prodzinski was assigned as the cadet coordinator for the Lower Deschutes River Program where he was responsible for training, monitoring and coordinating the efforts of five unarmed cadet officers' seasonal assignment on the Deschutes River's lower 100 wild and scenic miles.
  • Prodzinski developed and implemented a Bull Trout Protection Action Plan for Lake Billy Chinook and the Metolius River to provide protection and reduce the illegal harvest of Bull Trout from these waters which had been hovering dangerously low for several years. The plan was successful in reducing illegal harvest through enforcement efforts aimed at intentional acts, or education for those who needed it on fish identification.
  • Active involvement in youth education by speaking at hunter safety classes and natural resource events at local grade schools.

Captain Jeff Samuels, director of the OSP Fish & Wildlife Division, said Prodzinski sets the bar high for all OSP fish and wildlife troopers whose important work and contributions often occur away from the public's eye.

"Mark's work, as well as that of many other OSP Fish & Wildlife Division troopers, is critical to protect our natural resources and apprehend wildlife offenders. His efforts have discouraged many of these individuals from offending again, and he has instilled proper ethics and respect for wildlife in thousands of our youth," said Samuels.

News Release from: Oregon State Police

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