VAN BUREN, Mo. – Ozark National Scenic Riverways Ranger Chris Figge was recently honored as the 2021 Law Enforcement Instructor of the Year by the National Park Service Law Enforcement Training Center.
Candidates for Law Enforcement Instructor of the Year are evaluated for motivation and excellence in teaching law enforcement, contribution and improvement to training, and professional example during instruction.
Chris began his career in 1997 as a security guard at Gateway Arch, where he became a ranger in 1999. He transferred to Ozark National Scenic Riverways as a ranger in 2003. Chris was a ranger at the Jacks Fork Park. District since 2015, overseeing law enforcement and emergency services in the central part of the park.
Chris has been an instructor in various law enforcement disciplines throughout his career at Ozark. He is considered a master instructor and expert in firearms and the use of force, having taught both for over ten years. While assisting with training for active shooter response, he developed a weapons handling training program that he continues to update and improve with new methodologies.
He is currently an instructor in the NPS I-SWIM training program for swift water rescue. Additionally, he served as the Field Training Officer for the Field Training and Evaluation Program, instructing and evaluating new park rangers on a variety of essential skills. Chris has a passion for training and helping prepare new rangers for a future in law enforcement. He strives to combine multiple disciplines while teaching to create meaningful experiences for trainees that will prepare them for a challenging, yet rewarding career in serving and protecting the resources and visitors of our national parks.