Chad Jones has been selected as the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s new law enforcement director. Col. Jones became a game warden in 2004 and has held duty stations in Brazos and Trinity Counties, has served as a team lead for the Forensic Accident and Reconstruction Team, a lieutenant at the Game Warden Training Center in Hamilton County, Texas, a captain in Uvalde and a major in both Corpus Christi and in the Pineywoods region of East Texas.
Jones succeeds Col. Grahame Jones, who recently retired.
“Col. Grahame Jones was a devoted and tireless leader within the division during his tenue with TPWD,” said Jones. “As Texas Game Warden colonel, Grahame’s passion for Texas, the outdoors, Texas Game Wardens and our non-commissioned staff has been unrivaled. He has laid a solid foundation for all those following in his footsteps.”
As colonel, Chad Jones will set the tone, direction and expectations for the law enforcement division and contribute to the overall leadership of the agency. In addition, Jones will partner with other law enforcement agencies, first responders, TPWD divisional colleagues such as biologists and state park police, and other key constituencies.
“Chad follows in a line of distinguished Texas Game Warden colonels, all of whom have led our law enforcement team with great professionalism, purpose, and dedication,” said Carter Smith, executive director of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. “His deep roots in the field and broad experiences in conservation oriented law enforcement across the state will serve Texas and Texans exceedingly well, whether it is redoubling efforts to stop the illegal take of our fish and wildlife, ensuring our lands and waters remain safe for hunters, boaters and anglers, or providing search and rescue operations to help our most vulnerable citizens in times of their greatest need. In Colonel Jones, we have a fair minded and principled lawman who has dedicated his career to protecting the natural and cultural resources that make up our home ground.”
Col. Jones will oversee a force of 551 highly trained state game wardens that provide conservation law enforcement across Texas and 128 dedicated non-commissioned support staff. Though state game wardens focus primarily on conservation laws, they are fully commissioned peace officers authorized to enforce all state statutes providing “law enforcement off the pavement.”
“Texas Game Wardens continue to add value to the citizens of Texas by providing not only nationally recognized conservation law enforcement initiatives, but also a continuing model of community-oriented law enforcement off the pavement,” said Jones. “Our wardens rely on input from local communities to continue with a model of providing and protecting adaptive and inclusive hunting, fishing and outdoor recreation opportunities across the State.”
Jones was raised in rural San Augustine County in East Texas, where he was afforded the opportunity to enjoy and interact with the outdoors. Jones was first introduced to Texas Game Wardens in elementary school, knowing then the career path he wished to pursue. He attended Sam Houston State University and received his degree in Criminal Justice. Following graduation, and while working in adult probation in Huntsville, Jones applied to and was accepted into the 50th Game Warden Cadet Class. Jones is a graduate of the North American Conservation Law Enforcement Academy as well as the FBI’s Command College and Supervisor Leadership Institute.
Jones thanks his immediate family, his parents, along with all his mentors, teachers and friends for all their support through the ups and downs, long nights and adventures he has experienced thus far in his career as a Texas Game Warden.