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Message from President Ben Wise
Don’t Let Perfection Get in the Way of Progress
As I reflect on my time as President of the Wyoming Chapter of The Wildlife Society the phrase “Don’t let perfection get in the way of progress” continues to come to mind. As wildlife professionals, we live in a world of constant change and perpetual uncertainty, whether it is biological, societal, or political. Due in part to our training, or maybe due to our dedication, we inherently strive for perfection, accuracy, and significance. What I have come to realize is that the world we live and work in is an imperfect system. Oftentimes we are given opportunities that are not exactly what we desire and if we, as a profession, are not pliable and able to see the greater good in imperfection, we may miss the opportunity for progress. Very rarely does the perfect solution to complex issues appear. And if we hold onto the notion that the only solution that will suffice is perfection, it will surely be at the price of progress. Progress is made when individuals are willing to look beyond the past, embrace change, and reevaluate the status quo. From time to time we all need to look beyond our ideals and try to see the greater good by thinking outside the box, considering differing viewpoints, and doing something.
In my final Presidential Message, I want to thank the members of WY-TWS for allowing me to be your president over the last year. In my time leading our chapter, I strived to do as much as possible to move our society and profession forward, had some success, and learned a lot. I am excited to see all who can make it to Laramie in early November as Embere Hall has put together a phenomenal 2018 WY-TWS Conference. Finally, I would like to make one request to our membership: if at all possible, step up and take on a bigger role in the wildlife profession, whether it be through community outreach/education, mentoring the next generation of wildlife professionals/advocates, or stepping into a leadership role either professionally or civically. The timing may not be perfect, but never let perfection get in the way of progress.
Ben Wise is the Jackson Regional Brucellosis-Feedground-Habitat (BFH) Biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WGFD). He is tasked with working to reduce the risk of transmission of communicable wildlife diseases (primarily Brucellosis) both inter- and intra-specific through adaptive feedground management, habitat treatments, and disease research.