Lush Named Wildlife Officer of the Year by International Conservation Organization
Stacy Lush has been named Alabama Wildlife Officer of the Year by the Shikar-Safari Club International (SSCI). Lush currently serves as a Conservation Enforcement Officer with the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) in Houston County. Each year SSCI honors one officer from each state with the award. Recently, Lush was presented with the award at WFF headquarters in Montgomery, Ala., by SSCI representative Philip Jackson.
Lush’s supervisor, Capt. Chris Lewis, WFF District Four Law Enforcement Supervisor, said Lush is very deserving of the award. “Officer Lush’s commitment to his job is unparalleled,” Lewis said. “From fielding complaints about unpermitted hunters and baiting to wrangling nuisance animals, he is eager and willing to help anyone at any time of the day.”
Lush began his law enforcement career with WFF in Butler County in 2002. Since transferring to Houston County, Lush has become a seasoned nuisance animal responder, especially regarding calls about alligators.
According to Lewis, Lush’s alligator presentations at local schools are in high demand. “Lush uses that time to educate the students about Alabama’s wildlife,” Lewis said. “He teaches them that we can live with and among wildlife, and that they do not need to fear every animal with claws and teeth.”
Lush’s community outreach has led to partnerships between WFF and sporting goods stores in the Dothan area to host hunter education field days. Lush also participates in local shooting sports events, youth hunting and fishing events, the WFF hunter education program, and the National Archery in the Schools Program.
“His always upbeat attitude and skill in the outdoors makes Stacy one of the best officers I have had the pleasure to work with,” Lewis said. “Whether it involves helping a landowner by relocating an alligator, making arrests of violators, or helping kids learn to fish, hunt, and shoot, Officer Lush is one of the best.”
The SSCI is an international conservation organization that funds and supports a variety of conservation projects and scholarships around the world. In addition to recognizing outstanding officers in wildlife conservation, the SSCI also provides a $20,000 death benefit to the officer’s family in the event the officer is killed in the line of duty.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.outdooralabama.com.
Photo (left to right): Acting WFF Director Fred Harders, Stacy Lush, SSCI representative Philip Jackson, and WFF Law Enforcement Chief Kevin Dodd.