Capt. Pat Kelly was on hand at the recent FWC meeting in Orlando to present awards to two deserving FWC officers. They were each chosen through a process of nomination. Officer Michael Bibeau has been an FWC officer for seven years. Officer Peter “Sean” Gaudion has been with FWC since 2013. The FGA Trained-Eyes Coast Watcher Officer of the Year Award is given for outstanding service to the state of Florida and its fishery.
Officer Michael Bibeau
Officer Michael Bibeau is married to Kara Bibeau and they live happily in Pinellas County. Mike was born and raised in Pinellas and attended USF in Tampa before being accepted to the academy. He started his career with the FWC in Collier County and we were lucky enough as a region to have him transfer back roughly three years ago. He enjoys the outdoors and loves to golf, fish and spend time with his wife on the beach.
Like all Pinellas County officer’s, Mike does his fair share of outreach events throughout the year. He is a true ambassador for the FWC and represents all law enforcement officers in a positive light. His attitude and professionalism is why he has been a Field Training Officer six times and he takes that responsibility very seriously.
Mike has a true knack for finding, and catching, those who break our resource laws. Florida’s resource protection is his passion, and time after time you’ll see him waiting and watching and then catching these violators. His patience, dedication, and knowledge make him such an asset to the agency that there is rarely a time you won’t see his name in the weekly report. Mike continues his excellence in resource protection by sharing his knowledge with other officers on the ins and outs of making quality resource cases.
In 2016 Mike made 54 misdemeanor arrests, 6 warrant arrests, 2 felony arrests. He also wrote 37 uniform boating citations and 215 written warnings. He documented 400 hours of water patrol. He participated in multiple search and rescues and was nominated for a life-saving award.
FGA is very proud to name Mike as co-recipient of this prestigious award.
Officer Peter “Sean” Gaudion
Officer Peter “Sean” Gaudion has been assigned to Pinellas County for the entire length of his service. Sean is a native Floridian and has lived in the Tampa Bay area for most of his life, after moving from Broward County at a young age. Sean is an avid fisherman and outdoorsman with a true passion for protecting Florida’s resources.
Sean has always had a competitive nature that became evident when he received a scholarship to play football at UCF in Orlando. He participated in that program from 1999-2003. This competiveness and drive to succeed is also displayed in his daily work routine. Sean truly cares about making a positive impact on the citizens and resources of Florida. Sean has a wife, Brittney and a 1 year old daughter, Hazel. Sean is passionate about his job but his family is his true passion in his life.
Sean is a team player that rarely takes full credit for his accomplishments. He networks with other officers and community members to organize efforts to stop major violations. He has organized multiple details targeting misdemeanor and felony resource violations. Sean submitted an operational detail report to target illegal net fishing activity that resulted in 27 misdemeanor arrests, 9 felony arrests and 12 warnings. He also submitted a detail, still on-going, to target a wide range of crab trap violations that has resulted in 4 misdemeanor and 3 felony arrests.
Sean always comes to work with a positive attitude which inspires and motivates others. He sets the example for new officers and exemplifies the fact that hard work is rewarded. Sean uses discretion when dealing with the public. He educates violators with warnings when possible and charges individuals when necessary.
In 2016, Sean made 47 misdemeanor and 9 felony resource-related arrests. Many of Sean’s cases involved working late nights into early mornings. He worked long shifts in harsh conditions that many officers were not willing to work. He accomplished this success while responding to SAR missions, multiple calls for service and being a member of the Southwest Special Operations Group (SOG). His SOG responsibilities included monthly training and responding to two hurricanes for multiple days at a time.
FGA is proud to name Sean as co-recipient of the 2017 FGA “Trained-Eyes Coast Watcher” Officer of the year award.