Georgia DNR Names New Law Enforcement Division Director
Major Thomas Barnard to Succeed Retiring Colonel Eddie Henderson
Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Mark Williams, has announced the appointment of Major Thomas Barnard to serve as the Colonel and director of the Law Enforcement Division of DNR succeeding Eddie Henderson, who is retiring in November. The Board of Natural Resources will act to approve Major Barnard’s appointment at its December meeting.
Major Barnard currently serves in the Law Enforcement Division of DNR where he has worked for 25 years, most recently as Field Operations Major in charge of Investigations and Region Offices since 2015. In this role, Major Barnard oversees more than 200 officers and staff across seven state regions. Since joining LED, Major Barnard has won Region Ranger of the Year three times, Investigative Ranger of the Year, and LED Supervisor of the Year.
Based in Social Circle, the Law Enforcement Division is responsible for protecting Georgia’s wildlife populations and their habitats by enforcing laws, rules and regulations pertaining to game and non-game animals, endangered plants and animals, boating safety and other natural resource issues. Game Wardens in the Law Enforcement Division also investigate violations of wildlife laws, and hunting and boating incidents. Officers in the Law Enforcement Division possess specialized training in woodland and waterborne operations, aviation, Critical Incident Reconstruction, search-and-rescue, and disaster response.
“I am pleased to announce Thomas Barnard as the next Colonel and director of the Law Enforcement Division and am confident he will go above and beyond the call of duty to lead our nationally recognized Law Enforcement Division,” said Commissioner Mark Williams. “Under Colonel Henderson’s leadership, the division has worked hard to increase recruitment and retention, education and community involvement, and conservation enforcement. Colonel Henderson has led the way in making these aspirations a reality. I believe Thomas Barnard is the perfect fit to take on the challenge of continuing the division’s success. I know he will lead the division with strength and integrity.”
“It is truly an honor of a lifetime to be chosen to lead the Law Enforcement Division and my fellow Game Wardens,” Barnard said. “As a 25 year veteran of LED, this division has become a family to me, and I feel incredibly fortunate to know I will continue to serve with the best people in the world. Thank you, Commissioner Williams, for trusting me with this responsibility, and I look forward to building and expanding on what those before me have worked so hard to achieve.”
Major Barnard lives in Rutledge with his wife Kim and has a daughter attending Georgia College. He is a 2018 graduate of the FBI National Academy class number 273 and the National Association of Conservation Law Enforcement Chief’s Leadership Academy in 2016.
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