News Releases

Fishing association honors 2 FWC employees

News Release

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Media contact: Katie Purcell, 850-459-6585

The Florida Guides Association on June 25 in Sarasota honored two employees of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) for their conservation efforts:

  • Capt. Pat Kelly, Florida Guides Association president, presented FWC Officer Ken Thompson with the “Trained Eyes Coastwatchers” Officer of the Year award.
  • Dr. Luiz Barbieri with the FWC’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, received the Capt. Phil Chapman Conservation Award.

“Officer Thompson has dedicated his 26-year career to conserving Florida’s resources through enforcement as well as education of recreational and commercial users,” said Lt. George Wells, Thompson’s supervisor.

Thompson, who is stationed in Hillsborough County, has been known to work through the middle of the night during cold winter months to stop trap robbers and those taking advantage of the shrimp fishery. His efforts support the commercial fishing industry.

“He also has a passion for conserving Florida’s sought-after inshore fish such as snook, redfish and spotted seatrout,” Wells said.

Biologist Dr. Luiz Barbieri, a section leader with the FWC’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, received the Capt. Phil Chapman Conservation Award, which is presented to those who display a passionate commitment to the conservation of Florida’s marine fisheries through dedicated research and leadership.

Barbieri has been involved in many aspects of marine fisheries research and management throughout his career so far.

“Luiz is a world class fisheries scientist and valued leader within the FWC. His numerous contributions to science-based fisheries management in Florida and the Southeast United States are acknowledged by stakeholders, state and federal partners and academic colleagues,” said Gil McRae, Barbieri’s supervisor and director of FWRI. “Under Luiz’s leadership, Florida continues to maintain one of the finest science-based marine fisheries management agencies in the world.”

FWC Facts:
DeFuniak Springs is home to one of the two naturally round lakes in the world.

Learn More at AskFWC