CRITFC promoted 20-year CRITFC Enforcement veteran Sergeant Mitch Hicks to Chief of Enforcement effective August 1. Hicks is a member of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes from the Fort Hall Reservation.
“I am honored to lead one of the best enforcement entities in the region. I personally know how this work benefits Indian fishers along the Columbia River,” said Hicks. “My family, friends, and I were subjected harassment while exercising our tribal hunting and fishing rights. I remember having our salmon fishing camp shot at and being held at gunpoint while hunting in Idaho. My experiences have driven me to do what I can to prevent the harassment that I experienced as a boy from happening to anyone else.”
As the chief of law enforcement, Hicks is responsible for the management of CRITFC’s Enforcement Department. Based in Hood River, CRITFC Enforcement employs 17 patrol officers, dispatchers, and administrative staff and is responsible for patrolling the 147 miles of Zone 6 of the Columbia River and 31 fishing access sites that are found there.
“Mitch has a dedication to the tribal members who fish the Columbia and the protection of their treaty fishing right,” said CRITFC Executive Director Paul Lumley. “Enforcement of tribal treaty fishing rights is the backbone of tribal sovereignty and Mitch’s dedication will serve the tribes well.”
Hicks graduated from Idaho State University and has spent his entire enforcement career with CRITFC Enforcement. He was hired in April 1993 as a patrol officer and was promoted to sergeant in August 2000.
Hicks takes over for Davis Washines who retired from the position after three years of service. Washines remains with CRITFC as the Law Enforcement Liaison.