The State Agency Council to the Governor’s Commission for Women recently presented retired Texas game warden Kris Bishop with their Outstanding Leadership Award at their award luncheon in Austin. Several candidates from around the state of Texas received nominations for the award by their respective agency leaders. The award is presented annually and is based on nominations in four different categories including outstanding community involvement, outstanding management, outstanding personal development, and outstanding leadership.
Colonel Craig Hunter, the Director of Law Enforcement for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, described Bishop as “a trailblazer and role model” for not only female game wardens but for game wardens in general and for the profession itself.
Bishop served for 10 years as Galveston County’s only female game warden and as such opened the door for female game wardens to be more accepted throughout the state of Texas. She also became the first female Assistant Chief of Fisheries Enforcement. Her career began in 1993 when a professor at Southwest Texas State University told her that she should consider becoming a game warden. She took her professor’s suggestion to heart and enrolled in the game warden academy that same year, competing primarily against males for a spot in the academy.
Bishop impressed administrators during her preliminary interviews, passed her initial exams with flying colors, and was eventually accepted into the 43rd Texas game warden class before becoming one of the only female game wardens in the entire state of Texas at the time.
Early on in her career she earned certification as a Texas Commission of Law Enforcement Master Peace Officer, the highest and most prestigious honor or accreditation that a Texas peace officer can receive. She went on to receive numerous awards and recognition throughout her tenure as a Texas game warden, the most recent before her retirement being the TPWS Director’s Life Saving Citation which she earned for saving a man from drowning after he was thrown from his boat on a state lake earlier this year.