Press Release

Columbia County Resident Named Top Volunteer Hunter Education Instructor of Year

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (3/10/2011)

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division recently selected Dennis Ellis as the 2010 Volunteer Hunter Education Instructor of the Year. This award is presented annually in recognition of an instructor who displays outstanding volunteer efforts in educating sportsmen and women on wildlife conservation and the importance of safety while hunting.

“For over 18 years, Dennis has displayed a high level of professionalism while teaching students to be safe, responsible, ethical hunters,” says Corporal Ben Payne, Richmond County Ranger. “He is involved with every aspect of the planning process for classes and goes out of his way to give his attendees a personal experience.” 

Dennis Ellis has been a volunteer hunter education instructor since 1991. He was the WRD Region III Instructor of The Year in 2003 and also received a certificate of appreciation from Fort Gordon and the US Army for his volunteer work for the community including teaching the Georgia Hunter Safety Program. Dennis prepared the 2-hour homework assignment often used by instructors in 10-hour Hunter Education classroom courses.  

Dennis has been a member of the Fort Gordon Sportsman’s Club for 33 years. He is a member of the Ft Gordon Hunting and Fishing Advisory Council. He is a certified Range Safety Officer and Instructor for the Fort Gordon Sportsman’s Club. He achieved the Director of Civilian Marksmanship rank of Distinguished Master Pistol and Expert Rifle Shot while a member of the All Army Marksmanship Unit. He has also successfully completed the very difficult 12-week German Hunter Certification and Fishing Certification programs. 

The selection of the Hunter Education Instructor of the Year begins at the region level. Each of the seven WRD Law Enforcement Regions picks the outstanding instructor in their area and sends them to the DNR Law Enforcement/Hunter Education office. The applications are then submitted to the Hunter Safety Committee. This committee is made up of WRD personnel from Game Management and Law Enforcement who are knowledgeable in working with volunteers and about hunter safety education. The committee then makes the final selection. 

For more information on the Volunteer Hunter Education Instructor of the Year or hunter education classes, call the WRD Hunter Development Program Office at (770) 761-3010.  

The Hunter Education Program is supported by the Georgia Hunter Education Association (GHEA). GHEA was incorporated in 1986 with the goal of providing Hunter Education Graduates a place to apply what they learned in the classroom. Today, the GHEA continues to teach young men and women the basic principles behind firearm safety, hunting ethics, treestand safety, marksmanship, and other important criteria pertaining to safety in the field. For more information on GHEA, visit their website at http://www.ghea.net/ 

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