Department of Fish and Wildlife names new chief

Steve Crown, a lieutenant in the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) Enforcement Program, was promoted Aug. 30 to serve as the program's chief.

Steve Crown, a lieutenant in the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) Enforcement Program, was promoted Aug. 30 to serve as the program’s chief.

Crown is replacing Bruce Bjork, who is retiring after 43 years of state service, including 15 as the leader of the WDFW Enforcement Program.

“Steve brings a well-rounded law enforcement background to his new position, as well as a passion for the state’s natural resources,” said WDFW Director Phil Anderson. “The Enforcement Program plays a key role in helping the department achieve our mission and meet our legal responsibilities. I am confident Steve will maintain and enhance the consistent and professional approach that has been a hallmark of Chief Bjork’s tenure.”

Crown graduated from the University of Idaho and spent 11 years with the Wenatchee Police Department before joining WDFW in 2002. He was selected after a national recruitment and interview process and transitioned into his new role by working alongside Chief Bjork for the past month.

“Bruce Bjork is one of this state’s most highly respected law enforcement leaders,” said Crown. “I am honored and excited to lead the Enforcement Program and to build upon his accomplishments.”

Under Bjork’s leadership, WDFW made significant investments in cutting-edge law enforcement technology that increased officers’ efficiency and improved their ability to apprehend violators. He also helped establish the department as a general authority police agency and was instrumental in the passage of legislation that increased penalties for egregious violations such as spree killing and poaching trophy-class big-game animals.

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