The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) held the 2013 Volunteer Hunter Education Instructor Workshop on Feb. 16 at Camp Grant Walker near Pollock.

The workshop doubles as an in-service training session and awards recognition program for volunteer instructors who teach hunter education courses. Instructors are awarded both individual and team awards from three regions of the state.

Individual winners included: Joe Henderson, Jena; Cedrick Morales, St. Joseph; Dr. Tim Deshotel, Eunice; Paul Tornblom, New Iberia; Nolan Smith, Jr., Raceland; and Lawrence Lapeyrolerie, Baton Rouge.

Team winners per region included: James Hathorn, Debra Bothel and Edward Gongre from north Louisiana; Jerry Beard, Randy Foco, Steven Johnson, David Mannina, Yvonne Mannina, Gerald Tafoya and Paul Tornblom from central/southwest Louisiana; and Jessie Glascock, Charles Carney and Darrell Arceneaux from southeast Louisiana.

The Todd Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Roy Page of Castor, an instructor who has been part of the hunter education program for 11 years. A lifelong hunter, Page has been instrumental in working with various youth groups in hunter education and assisting LDWF with special youth hunting programs.

The workshop offered in-service training sessions for the volunteer instructors. Department staff gave presentations on management of white-tailed deer in Louisiana, outdoor survival, safe use of firearms when hunting from boats and the correct use of a special pepper spray made for deterrent of black bears.

The goal of Louisiana’s Hunter Education Program, coordinated by LDWF’s Education Section, is to reduce hunting incidents by producing safe and responsible hunters. Volunteer instructors are the backbone of the department’s Hunter Education Program, training 17,000 students annually in hunter safety. Persons interested in becoming volunteer hunter education instructors can find out more information on the Hunter Education Program from the department’s website:  www.wlf.la.gov/hunting/hunter-education.

Logo courtesy Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries

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