The ballot for The Wildlife Society’s 2021 elections includes candidates for the position of Southwest Section representative. See previous articles on candidates for TWS vice president and Canadian Section representative.
Additional nominees may be submitted by any voting member in good standing, if supported in writing by 5% of the voting membership. The deadline for additional nominations is May 16.
Electronic ballots will be sent June 1 to all members with an email address. Members without an email address will receive a paper ballot in the mail. Voting will close June 30. Mailed paper ballots must be postmarked on or before June 30. Newly elected council members are scheduled to be installed at the virtual 28th Annual Conference, Nov.1-5.
The candidates’ statements expressing their vision for The Wildlife Society and their interest in running for this council position are below.
Nominees for Southwest Section Representative
I have lived and worked in the Southwest for over 30 years, and the wild lands and wildlife of this area are near and dear to my heart. The world of wildlife management and research is comprised of a relatively small, close-knit group of very dedicated people. Through my many years of working across the Southwest, and through my involvement in TWS, I have gotten to know many of these people well. They care deeply about wildlife resources. They work long hours. They do good things for wildlife. They need someone who knows the issues in the southwest to speak up at the national level; to be their voice to TWS leadership. They also need to hear back from leadership. I believe I can do this and do it well.
I would focus on better communication between scientists and managers. I have a long-time interest in improving communication between these two groups and I believe that TWS has a large role to play in this endeavor.
A top issue for me is involving youth and minorities in conservation and science. We need more young people, from diverse backgrounds, to engage in conservation and to pursue careers in wildlife research and management.
Another issue that I care deeply about is rapidly accelerating climate change. Anyone who lives in the southwest has seen and felt the changes – hotter and drier, with more intense weather events. I would keep this issue in the limelight while working with national, section and the state chapters.
It has been a privilege to represent the Southwest Section on Council. If nothing else, the past stressful year has demonstrated the strength of The Wildlife Society’s Strategic Plan, the dedication and resourcefulness of TWS staff, and the willingness of Council to adapt to a situation none of us ever expected. The last two and a half years have found me working with highly focused, professional colleagues who place the welfare of The Wildlife Society, its members and its Chapters and Sections, at the forefront of every discussion.
If re-elected to serve another term on Council, I will continue to bring forward issues of concern to the members of the three strong Chapters that make up the Southwest Section. These issues include supporting the establishment of a Mexican Chapter and the pursuit of opportunities to collaborate with the Native American Fish and Wildlife Society. I also believe we must continue to seek avenues to encourage minority recruitment and retention in the wildlife profession and to ensure that all members are made to feel welcome at TWS events. Students and early career professionals are the wildlife profession’s future. It is important that we continue to listen to their concerns. The Wildlife Society is in a stronger financial position now more than ever before. While cautiously approaching the future, we need to examine strategies for assuring the most benefit for the membership, while maintaining long-term financial stability. I would be glad to be able to continue helping in these efforts.
Share your thoughts on this article, and others, on our Instagram, Facebook and Twitter pages.