6/8/2012 1:00 AM
The ODNR Division of Watercraft held its largest graduation ceremony today with 24 watercraft officer cadets at the Ohio State Highway Patrol Training Academy.
COLUMBUS, OH – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ (ODNR) Division of Watercraft held its largest graduation ceremony today with 24 watercraft officer cadets at the Ohio State Highway Patrol Training Academy. The newest class of 20 male and four female watercraft officers graduated following their completion of an 18 week intense training which they began in February.
The keynote address was made by John C. Fetterman, director of law enforcement for the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators. Additional remarks were delivered by Director Thomas P. Charles, Ohio Department of Public Safety; Colonel John Born, superintendent of the Ohio State Highway Patrol; and James Zehringer, director of ODNR. The swearing-in ceremony was conducted by Rodger M. Norcross, chief of the ODNR Division of Watercraft.
Courses completed by the 2012 watercraft officer cadet training class included firearms, physical fitness, self-defense, motor vehicle operations, criminal and watercraft law, accident investigation and detection of impaired motorists and boaters.
Watercraft Officer Stephanie M. Uber of Youngstown was selected as class speaker and thanked the academy and cadet family members for their support shown during the cadets’ training.
Nine of the graduates received special honors for top performance in various fields of study and training while at the Patrol Academy. The honorees include:
Following Friday’s graduation, each newly commissioned watercraft officer will report to their assigned area offices. The graduates’ first two weeks on duty will involve a field-training period under the guidance of a veteran watercraft officer. Additional field training will continue throughout the year. The new graduates are assigned to each of the Division of Watercraft’s 11 area offices across Ohio.
- Overall performance – Maurice A. Irish of Wellington.
- Top performance in academics – Ryan R. Henak of Bucyrus.
- Top performance in firearms – Jason R. Jones of Howard, Travis E. Ferguson of Toledo and Britney A. Chesser of Louisville, Ky.
- Top performance in physical fitness – Maurice A. Irish, Sarah R. Koch of Liberty Center and Christopher Lamb of Wilmington.
- Top performance in driving – Scott A. Stafford of Fairlawn.
Information on how to become a state watercraft officer in addition to Ohio’s boating laws, programs, destinations, facilities and area office locations is available online at www.ohiodnr.com/watercraft.
ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at www.ohiodnr.com.
Watercraft Officer Hometown Assignment
Britney A. Chesser Louisville, Ky. East Fork Office
Christopher J. Conrad Ashtabula Scioto County Office
Daniel W. Ferguson Oregon Wapakoneta Office
Travis E. Ferguson Toledo Maumee Bay Office
Garrett R. Heasley Huber Heights Springfield Office
Ryan R. Henak Bucyrus Alum Creek Office
Derek D. Hill Fremont Cleveland Office
Nicole A. Hittner Columbus Springfield Office
Maurice A. Irish Wellington Sandusky Office
Jason R. Jones Howard Cambridge Office
Sarah R. Koch Liberty Center Cleveland Office
Christopher Lamb Wilmington Springfield Office
Jeffrey M. Lange Dublin Alum Creek Office
Chase T. McDonald Zanesville Cambridge Office
Michael A. Pflager Southington Sandusky Office
Scott A. Stafford Fairlawn Akron Office
Carl R. Staiger Delaware Alum Creek Office
Evan E. Staiger Brunswick Akron Office
Bradley W. Swinning Waverly Scioto County Office
Adam R. Trisket Madison Ashtabula Office
Stephanie M. Uber Youngstown Akron Office
Aaron B. Warren Bethel Scioto County Office
Wyatt M. Alexander Huron Ashtabula Office
Ryan R. Zimmerman Spencerville Springfield Office
Pictured is the 2012 ODNR Division of Watercraft cadet class.
For more information, contact:
Cindy Bellar, ODNR Division of Watercraft
Bethany McCorkle, ODNR Office of Communications