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Friel named DOCARE chief

By Staff | Jan 7, 2016

HONOLULU – Thomas “Tommy” Friel, a conservation law enforcement officer for nearly three decades, was recently named the new chief of the state Department of Land & Natural Resources’ Division of Conservation Resources (DOCARE).

In making the announcement, DLNR Chair Suzanne Case said, “We have the great privilege of hiring Tommy, who has deep personal and professional roots in Hawaii. Enforcement of laws aimed at protecting our precious natural and cultural resources is one of the most important roles DLNR plays. To attract someone of Tommy’s stature and experience ensures a strong enforcement philosophy with fairness and balance.”

Chief Friel has a wealth of experience, with more than 28 years in state and federal law enforcement leadership roles. For over 21 years, he served with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Office of Law Enforcement, Pacific Island Division.

His experience includes supervision of special agents, fisheries enforcement officers and office staff in Hawaii and around the Pacific.

DLNR Chair Case added, “With Tommy’s experience working with ocean fisheries, marine mammals and endangered species, he is a natural fit for the state’s top conservation law enforcement role.”

Chief Friel is a lifelong resident of windward Oahu but has worked in enforcement operations throughout the world.

“My passion in protecting Hawaii’s natural resources stems from my commitment to creating a brighter tomorrow for our keiki and mo’opuna,” said Friel.