Bill Lafferty

Great Lakes Fishery Commission 2003 Buzz Besadny Award for Fostering Great Lakes Partnerships

Ontario CO Enforcement Supervisor Bill Lafferty

Bill Lafferty, Enforcement Supervisor for the Lake Erie Management Unit in London, shared the Buzz Besadny Award for Fostering Great Lakes Partnerships from the Great Lakes Fishery Commission.

This award is presented annually by the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, which recognized Bill’s work in building and revitalizing the Great Lakes Law Enforcement Committee, as well as his work with other jurisdictions to improve coordinated law enforcement operations on the Great Lakes.

Bill worked with colleagues from Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and the U.S. Coast Guard to develop a Memorandum of Understanding regarding fisheries enforcement operations on Lake Erie. The Memorandum allows Conservation Officers from Ontario to operate from ships and aircraft in U.S. waters, and allows the U.S. Coast Guard to participate in fisheries law enforcement in Canadian waters. This first-of-its-kind arrangement required approval from the U.S. Department of State and Canadian Department of External and Foreign Affairs.

The Memorandum paved the way for the development of Operation Kingfisher, a multi-jurisdictional law enforcement initiative on Lake Erie. "Operation Kingfisher is a model for cooperation and efficiency in law enforcement," said Captain Ray Pierce of the Canadian Coast Guard. "It is so successful that it will be extended to cover lakes Michigan and Superior."

Bill was co-recognized for this award along with Dr. Kevin Ramsey of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Ninth Coast Guard District Office of Law Enforcement.