Sims Named Alabama Enforcement Officer of the Year by the NWTF
Sergeant Jon Sims has been named the National Wild Turkey Federation’s (NWTF) Alabama State Chapter Officer of the Year. Sims was recognized for the award during the Federation's 34th Annual Convention and Sport Show Awards Banquet in Nashville on February 20, 2010. The NWTF is a national conservation organization dedicated to the improvement of critical wildlife habitat and increased access to public hunting land.
Since joining the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources in 2002, Sims has distinguished himself in the field as a conservation enforcement officer and was promoted to investigator with the Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division (WFF) Special Investigations Unit (SIU) in 2007. Sims was promoted to SIU Acting Supervisor in 2009.
According to WFF Enforcement Chief Allan Andress the effectiveness and productivity of the SIU has reached new heights under Sims’ leadership. “Sergeant Sims has been so successful in the SIU because of his attitude, enthusiasm and professionalism,” Andress said. “He accepts every assignment with a positive frame of mind and gives a complete effort to any case small or large. Sergeant Sims is very deserving of this recognition.”
Since joining the SIU Sims has been the lead investigator on many high priority cases. Two of his most important cases involved the sale and importation of wild turkeys. In September 2008 a Sims led investigation resulted in the conviction of Bobby Joe Broadway of Jackson County, for taking wood duck eggs from the wild, taking wild turkeys off an Alabama Wildlife Management Area and for importing wild turkeys into the state. Officers seized 70 Eastern wild turkeys, 17 Eastern wild turkey eggs and eight wood ducks during the arrest.
In August 2009, another Sims investigation led to the arrest of a Coosa County couple who took turkey eggs from the wild, imported Merriam’s turkeys from Georgia and were selling Eastern wild turkeys. During the arrest 28 Eastern wild turkeys and six Merriam’s were seized. The couple is currently awaiting a court date.
Sergeant Sims is adamant about the dangers of importing and releasing turkeys into the state. “The spread of diseases and pathogens could have a devastating effect on the intense efforts our wildlife biologists and sportsmen have put into restoring wild turkey populations in Alabama,” Sims said.
A true sportsman, Sims’ love for the outdoors extends beyond his official duties with the state. Sims hunts and manages hundreds of acres of wildlife habitat in Lee County, and particularly enjoys the challenge of turkey hunting. Sims also promotes the sport of hunting by preparing a dove field each year for conservation officers and their children to hunt free of charge.
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