ROCKPORT — Two men known well to the Mount Desert Island commercial fishing community were honored at the annual Maine Fishermen’s Forum last weekend at the Samoset Resort here. Specialist Sean Dow of the Maine Marine Patrol accepted the Officer of the Year award Saturday. The DMR Excellence Award, now named for its first recipient, the late Andy Mays of Southwest Harbor, went to Machiasport fisherman Mike Murphy.
The Officer of the Year award is an annual recognition of Marine Patrol officers who provide outstanding service in support of the Maine lobster industry.
The DMR Excellence Award recognizes industry members who participate with the department to ensure a sustainable future for Maine’s commercial fisheries. In 2016, Mays was honored for his 25-plus years of service and participation on DMR advisory councils.
“The DMR has recognized me for something I do really well, which is arguing with people,” he said at the time.
Mays was active in fisheries management through DMR research, advisory councils and legislation for nearly a generation. He worked with four commissioners and helped usher in the lobster zone system when federal regulators threatened major changes to the fishery in the late 1990s.
In presenting this year’s award to Murphy, Keliher recalled his last few visits with Mays before his death in December. Mays and Murphy had often disagreed over the years on management issues, he said, but both were always willing to listen to another perspective. Mays was reportedly thrilled to hear that Murphy would receive the award.
Plus, Keliher teased, since they put a photo of Mays on the plaque, Murphy will have to look at his mug on a regular basis.