Foundation Awards Exemplary FWC Employees
Tallahassee, FL (April 7, 2021) – Two Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) employees received awards for their exemplary work from the nonprofit Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida at FWC’s Commission meeting in Tallahassee on February 25, 2021.
FWC Chief Information Officer Glenda Atkinson was awarded the 2020 Rodney Barreto FWC Employee of the Year Award. Atkinson is known for her success at improving effectiveness within her department, and she outdid herself in 2020, enabling the temporary telework of many hundreds of staff agency-wide with minimal disruption early in the year. As the pandemic rapidly forced employees to work from home, she was a trailblazer in ensuring business as usual. Thanks to Atkinson, FWC resources remained available to staff, and communications with the public continued uninterrupted throughout the lockdown.
The award was co-presented by its namesake Miami native and entrepreneur Rodney Barreto, who began his own career as a law enforcement officer and is currently the chairman of the FWC Commission. Barreto also served as chairman of the FWC Commission for seven years during his previous appointment and has chaired the foundation board as part of his extensive volunteer service in Florida’s nonprofit sector.
The Foundation also honored Director of FWC’s Division of Law Enforcement Colonel Curtis Brown with the 2020 Louise Ireland Humphrey Award. The Humphrey Award recognizes FWC employees for outstanding service over their entire careers. Col. Brown began his career with the Florida Game and Fish Commission in 1991 in Hendry County. Early in his career he earned the Officer of the Year Award, worked on covert operations and inspired the passage of the Kelly Johnson Act, which tightened restrictions on boating and drinking. As Director of Law Enforcement, he has been a strong advocate for boating safety, working with the legislature on establishing laws to help protect the lives of Florida boaters. Colonel Brown has also served as the Vice Chairman of the Law Enforcement Committee for the national Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies for the past five years, acting as a spokesperson on the perils of the black-market turtle trade, among other issues. He is also dedicated to developing the next generation of conservation leaders within FWC Law Enforcement through professional development.
The Louise Ireland Humphrey Achievement Award is named after the first woman appointed to serve on the board of the then-Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission in 1984. A Leon County resident and owner of Woodfield Springs Plantation, Humphrey served until 1999 and was widely lauded as a conservationist for her love of the land, particularly the Red Hills area north of Tallahassee, and for her leadership on fish and wildlife issues. The award reflects dedication to the conservation mission that guided Mrs. Humphrey and now guides the FWC.
This year the nominees were also awarded financial prizes in recognition of their achievements throughout their careers. Nominees include Jim Estes, Jeff Gore, E. Darrell Land and Steve Marshall.
“2020 presented unprecedented challenges for FWC and its staff,” said Andrew Walker, foundation president and CEO. “These employees went above and beyond to conserve wildlife and outdoor recreation.”