CODY - Dan Smith, game warden and Private Lands Public Wildlife access coordinator with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department in Cody was recognized by the National Wild Turkey Federation as the 2012 Wyoming law enforcement officer of the year.
“Dan Smith was nominated for this award because of his dedication to wildlife management, law enforcement, and his efforts in developing hunting and fishing access through the department’s Private Lands Public Wildlife program,” said Cody Region Wildlife Supervisor Alan Osterland.
Through Smith’s efforts in 2012, landowners committed more than 486,000 acres of private and previously inaccessible public lands to hunting access. “Over 18,000 acres were secured specifically for turkey hunting within Big Horn, Park, and Washakie counties,” Osterland said. “In 2012, Smith also worked with landowners to secure approximately 29,000 acres of access for the hunting of cow elk in an area that had not seen public access for many years.”
Smith is reputed to have a positive attitude, an outstanding work ethic, and a high degree of professionalism and integrity. “Smith’s ability to foster positive and cooperative working relationships with landowners and hunters is exceptional and is a great asset to the Game and Fish and the Private Lands Public Wildlife program,” Osterland said.
Smith is originally from Cheyenne and attended the University of Wyoming and Arizona State University to earn a bachelor’s degree in wildlife conservation biology. He began his career with Game and Fish in 2001 as the Private Lands Public Wildlife access coordinator in Cody. Previously he had spent eight years as a game warden and wildlife manager with the Arizona Game and Fish Department.
Away from work, Smith is active in the community. He teaches hunter education classes, has volunteered his time as a youth hockey and baseball coach, and is an avid turkey and big game hunter. Smith lives in Cody with his wife and two children.
(Contact: Cody Regional Office (307) 527-7125)