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DNR officer honored for efforts on Lake Lanier

DAWSONVILLE — Georgia Department of Natural Resources Cpl. Jason Roberson was recently named Officer of The Year by the Southern States Boating Law Administrators Caucus.

In February, Roberson was named Georgia Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Division’s 2014 Boating Officer of the Year for his exceptional work on Lake Lanier.

According to a news release from DNR, Roberson will represent Georgia this fall as one of three finalists nationwide for the “Butch Potts Boating Law Enforcement Officer of the Year” Award. The honor will be presented at the annual conference of the National Association of Boating Law Administrators.

The caucus is one of the three regional associations within the administrators association, which represents 20 Southern states and territories.

Col. Eddie Henderson, law enforcement director for the DNR, praised Roberson, a Dawson County resident who has been with the agency for 14 years. 

“We are very proud of Jason and the outstanding work he does at Lanier,” he said in a statement. “I’m not surprised he won … His work ethic and track record speak for themselves, and I believe he has good chance of picking up the national award.”

According to the DNR, Roberson has been successful in enforcing boating under the influence laws and pursuing those who participate in illegal drug activity on the lake.

In addition to his expertise in boating law enforcement, he is also highly-skilled in search and rescue operations. In 2014, he conducted 15 such missions, several of which included people needing immediate medical attention.

During the winter of 2014, he helped in recover the bodies of two missing boys from an ice-covered cove on Lanier. The ice had to be broken up before search efforts could begin.

According to the DNR, Roberson is a mentor to younger rangers and works with the Gainesville/Hall County Safe Kids Coalition, where he gave 14 water safety programs to target-aged children.

When nominating Cpl. Roberson for the state award, his supervisor, Sgt. Mike Burgamy, Roberson’s supervisor, said in a statement that the officer is “top-notch” in ensuring boating safety.

“He is a professional that exhibits fair and unbiased enforcement, education where applicable, compassion when needed, and dedication always,” Burgamy said.