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RALEIGH, N.C. (March 5) - The North Carolina Wildlife Federation has named Senior Officer Ryan Taylor, a native of Lumberton now based in Carteret County, as its Wildlife Enforcement Officer of the Year for 2006.

Taylor, a 6-year veteran with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, accepted the award on Feb. 10 at the Governor's Conservation Achievement Awards banquet, an occasion to recognize those who have exhibited an unwavering commitment to conservation and an uncommon determination to safeguard the state's natural resources.

T. Edward Nickens, chairman of the Wildlife Federation's Awards Committee, said Taylor is well known not only for his tireless efforts in enforcing boating, fish and game laws, but also his professional and courteous manner.

"His courteous demeanor, his supervisor tells me, allows him to be the type of officer who receives a 'thank-you' from the person to whom he has just finished writing a citation," Nickens said.

Taylor was also cited for outstanding work in conservation and outdoor safety education, dealing with both the public and media. He conducts regular programs in boater safety certification, hunter safety programs and the annual Youth Hunter Safety Tournaments.

"We have a tremendous amount of boating here," Taylor said, pointing out the proximity of the Intercoastal Waterway and the numerous sounds, rivers and creeks near Morehead City. "I make boating safety a top priority in education and enforcement."

In addition to his regular enforcement duties, Taylor is a field training officer for the Commission. He was certified as a general instructor through the N.C. Justice Academy and attended boating accident investigation schools in Ashburn, Va. Following completion of these schools, he was certified as a Trainer Facilitator through the National Association of Safe Boat Law Administrators. He currently teaches the boating accident investigation block of instruction in the Wildlife Enforcement Officers Basic Training school, conducted in Salemburg.

He is the son of Howard and Vickie Taylor, of Lumberton, and a graduate of Lumberton High School. He holds a B.S. degree in business management from UNC-Pembroke. He and wife Jada are the parents of a four-month-old son, Easton.


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