An avid outdoorsman since he was old enough to hold a fishing rod, Brent Wheat has turned his love of the outdoors into a career as writer, photographer, publisher, television & television personality, instructor and speaker about the wilds of Indiana. He also is an active law enforcement and gun writer, currently appearing as Law Enforcement Consultant and columnist for SWAT Magazine along with writing regularly for BearingArms.com.
His list of media credits is extensive, ranging from photos and articles appearing in local newspapers to pieces that have appeared and been quoted in several national magazines. In 2004, he won the Best Division I Sports Columnist award from the Hoosier State Press Association and was named Conservation Communicator of the Year by the Indiana Wildlife Federation.
In 2015, Brent began publishing WildIndiana print magazine. It was available in over 90 locations throughout central Indiana. In later 2015, print publication ceased to focus on internet-only publication. Currently, WildIndiana.com and associated online properties continue to grow at a steady pace.
Brent’s long-running “Out in the Open” outdoors column has restarted after a lengthy hiatus. For 18 years it appeared weekly in various central Indiana newspapers. Currently it appears bi-weekly in the The Lebanon Reporter and
During seasons #1 & 2 of SWAT Magazine Television on the Outdoor Channel, Brent had a weekly commentary spot.
When not writing, shooting photos, spending time outdoors or building things that explode, Brent enjoys hiking, gardening and performing with various musical groups (he plays drums, guitar, harmonica, banjo and the lottery) .
Brent attended Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, majoring in Forestry and Horticulture. Unfortunately, hunting, fishing and outdoor adventures in north-central Indiana proved more irresistible than study so college ended after three and-a-half years, much to the relief of Brent’s academic adviser.
Brent retired in 2015 after a 30-year career in law enforcement, first with the Boone County Sheriff’s department for four years and ultimately with the Lebanon Police Department where he retired as Lieutenant in the patrol division. During his law enforcement career, Brent has worked as a reserve officer, jail officer, dispatcher, detective, evidence technician, narcotics canine handler and was a founding member of the bicycle patrol, dive team and Special Response (SWAT) Team. He also regularly appeared in television and print media as department spokesperson.
Brent has also served on the Lebanon City Council, Boone County Council and the Center Township Board. Additionally, he has served on the Boone County Redevelopment Commission and is currently a member of the Indiana Turn In a Poacher (TIP) Board of Directors.
He also helped train public safety officers during occasional stints as visiting instructor at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy, assistant instructor for LifeGuard Systems, Inc and other various training groups. Brent has served as lecturer for the Indiana Cooperative Extension Service Venison Workshop and with the Media Services Team and Public Information Officers Committee of the 2001 World Police & Fire Games. He was also assistant instructor for the Boone County Sheriff’s Department Introduction to Defensive Pistol class.
Before entering the law enforcement field, Brent was consistently unable to hold a steady job and his other occupations have included stints as assistant landscape nursery manager, groundskeeper for large private estate, dispatcher for a security company, canoe outfitter and owner of a small landscaping business. His unpaid avocations have been many, including a four-year tour of duty as a college radio station disk jockey.
Being somewhat hyperactive, Brent has also been active as a Cub Scout leader, past-president of Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #110, assistant Special Response Team leader, Pension Secretary of Lebanon Police Department and has been a member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA), Association of Great Lakes Outdoor Writers (AGLOW), National Rifle Federation, American Rivers, Indiana Wildlife Federation, National Wild Turkey Federation, Employer Support Committee of the Indiana National Guard and Hoosier Canoe Club. He has served on the Board of Directors for the Boone County Child Advocacy Center and the New Life Men’s Shelter along with having served as President and Chairmen of the Board of Directors of Hoosier Outdoor Writers (HOW).
Brent has also appeared in Outstanding Young Men of America 1992 and received a unit commendation with the Special Response Team in 1998.
Resume’, curriculum vitae and shoe size are available upon request.