Baker Police Chief Carl Dunn Loves To Introduce Fishing To The Youth Of His Community
story by Ed Pratt, LDWF Public Information
Anyone who knows Carl Dunn, the Police Chief of the City of Baker, will tell you that he sure loves to fish. He will tell you that, too.
He participates in many area events so that he can show off his catch and his cooking skills.
If you look on his Facebook page there are a couple photos of his family and most of the rest, well, it is him and fish or family members and others showing off fish.
The other thing though is that anyone who knows Dunn knows that he uses his boats to take young people out who have never even used a cane pole. Many of his young guests are from single-parent homes or they are special needs children and adults.
“I love doing that. It means so much to me and to the young people and their parents,” Dunn said. “You ought to look at their faces when they catch something. It makes my day.”
Dunn was elected police chief in Baker in March of 2016. The small municipality is just north of Baton Rouge in East Baton Rouge Parish. Before becoming chief, he spent 37 years with the Baton Rouge Police Department. He was named Police Officer of the Year in 1986.
In many of those years, Dunn said he was holding fish-fries for his friends on the force.
In the three years since becoming police chief, he has focused on the general welfare of the Baker residents. That’s the law enforcement side. That other thing - fishing - well that hasn’t slowed down much, especially working with young people.
Dunn has a unique request of the moms of the boys and girls when they bring their catches home. “I ask the mother to say at the table ‘our dinner today is provided by the child or daughter. The mom will say, ‘Mr. Carl, he could hardly stop from smiling so much.’ They feel they have helped their family,” Dunn said.
The special needs children are among his favorites. “I feel they need to just get away from their regular days,” he said. “When they catch a fish we all feel good.”
Fishing has been a major part of his life since his dad took him fishing as a child. He has been hooked since he caught his first fish.
During those days, he fished from the bank in the Port Allen area of West Baton Rouge Parish. But. he had other dreams. “I would see people passing by in their boats and I always wished they would stop and offer to take us with them,” he said.
As an adult, he has solved that issue. He now has four boats of his own. He and his wife go out and fish together. Few people get away from an invite to go fishing.
During many conversations about life, Dunn said he brings fishing into it. “This is an art that you can’t lose in Louisiana. You have so many places to go fishing.”
“I love everything about fishing…I want to pass it on to as many young people as I can,” he said. “Fishing is something that you can do for yourself and your family.”
While bragging about what a great fisherman he is, Dunn also lays claim to being one of the best at frying them.
According to Dunn, he uses a simple recipe: A little yellow cornflower, Season All and cayenne pepper and it’s magic time. “It has been so good that sometimes people thought I had done something secretive.”
Want to know more about Carl Dunn?
Q & A with the City of Baker’s Top Cop
How did you get into fishing?
I got into fishing when my father, Adolphus Dunn Sr., took my brothers and me to City Park Lake in Baton Rouge.
How old were you?
Seven years old.
Did you love it immediately or did it grow on you?
After that first trip to City Park Lake, I fell in love with fishing and always asked my dad to take us fishing
What was the most exciting time you had fishing growing up?
We fished with cane poles and all of us caught some very small bream, but to us it was a wonderful experience that we have always cherished.
Any dangerous times?
Only dangerous times were being caught in thunderstorms across Lake Verret and trying to make it back
What is your favorite fish?
Favorite place to fish?
That would have to be the Mississippi River.
Did you teach your children to fish?
I taught all of my children to fish while they were very young. I did it because fishing has always been a big part of my life and I wanted all of them to experience it as I did.
Did they take to it immediately, or did it take time for them to like it?
All six of my children fell in love with fishing as I did. But my four daughters lost interest, as they became teenagers. My boys still love it today.
What do you get out of it?
I get a joy out of fishing and mentoring on the water. It provides a relief from any stress or distractions of life.
You say you love to cook. How many fish-fries have you had?
My best guess is about 300.
What is the best catch you ever had?
I have caught over 500 pounds of catfish at one time.
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