September 24, 2010
Arizona - Officer Tim Baumgarten, statewide operating under
the influence (OUI) coordinator with the Arizona Game and Fish
Department, has received the prestigious “NASBLA Award” in
recognition of his exemplary performance in recreational boating
safety enforcement and his impact on national impaired boating
The award was given by the National Association of State
Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and is the oldest award
presented by the nonprofit organization. First presented in 1969,
it recognizes persons who have contributed to NASBLA as well as to
boating safety in general.
Throughout his 30-year career, Baumgarten has focused on the
advancement of knowledge regarding impaired boat operator
detection and enforcement efforts. He was involved in the first
impaired boating checkpoint in Arizona in 1993, and since then he
has participated and/or supervised numerous others.
Baumgarten is recognized throughout the western states as one of
the top experts in watercraft law enforcement, especially in OUI/BUI
(boating under the influence) practices and techniques, boat theft
investigations, and watercraft accident investigations.
Baumgarten continues to serve as a BUI instructor for NASBLA and
has provided multiple classes to hundreds of officers across the
U.S. since NASBLA launched its Boating Under the Influence
Detection and Enforcement course in 2004. As an instructor he has
developed lesson plans and instructed classes for NASBLA and
brought Arizona’s innovative OUI special project “best practices”
to other agencies. He also helped develop a watercraft law
enforcement training program for federal officers at the FLETC
academy in Glynco, Ga.
In addition, Baumgarten crafted a BUI checkpoint plan protocol and
other OUI/BUI operational forms that have been heavily used by
agencies during Operation Dry Water, a coordinated national
weekend of BUI detection and enforcement launched by NASBLA in
2009. Baumgarten served as a technical and background author for
NASBLA during the multi-year attempt to validate the standardized
field sobriety tests for use in the marine environment. He has
been heavily involved with the research firm in terms of testing
protocols and eventual training regiment rollout with the National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration, other NASBLA instructors,
and the Southern California Research Institute.
Another Arizona officer, Sergeant Doug Schuster of the Mohave
County Sheriff’s Office, was honored by NASBLA as the 2010
National Boating Law Enforcement Officer of the Year.