Folden named Conservation Police Officer of the Year

CPO Marc Folden (far right) with DNR Director Wayne Rosenthal (far left) and DNR Conservation Police Chief Rafael Gutierrez (center).

Marc Folden, who is based in southern Illinois’ Hamilton County, has been named by the DNR as the Conservation Police Officer of the Year.

A resident of McLeansboro, Folden is a 15-year veteran of DNR.

“Our officers with the Illinois Conservation Police are the best-trained, hardest-working law enforcement officers in the state – and we appreciate everything they do to enhance the safety of all Illinoisans,” said DNR Director Wayne Rosenthal. “Congratulations to CPO Folden and all of this year’s award recipients for their exemplary work.”

DNR Conservation Police Chief Rafael Gutierrez added, “CPO Folden is well-known among our officers and our law enforcement colleagues from other agencies for his exceptional work ethic and his rapport with the public. He and all of our officers are committed to ensuring public safety in our parks and on our waterways, enforcing wildlife and fish laws and regulations, enforcing traffic, drug and environmental laws, and often being the first responders for disaster relief and rescue efforts throughout the state.”

During 2017, Folden wrote nearly 300 citations and warnings for offenses involving boating, fish and game violations, park infractions, and driving vehicles or operating watercraft under the influence of alcohol or drugs. He also volunteers as a firearms instructor, NARCAN instructor, and field training officer.

Other Officer of the Year nominees were CPO Matt Viverito (DeWitt County), CPO Robert “Leo” Finn (Putnam County), CPO Daniel Greuel (Shelby County), and CPO Zachary French (Madison County).

Read more about Folden’s award and other CPOs who were honored in the May 4 issue of Illinois Outdoor News.

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