The Wildlife Society (TWS) is pleased to announce that Dr. Byron Kenneth (Ken) Williams will become the Society’s new Executive Director effective March 4, 2013. Highly regarded for his leadership at state and federal levels, Williams brings significant natural-resources expertise to the helm of TWS, the premier scientific society for professionals in wildlife management and conservation.
Williams is currently completing his service as Co-Director of the Science and Decisions Center in the U.S. Geological Survey, where he has focused on adaptive management, valuation of ecosystem services, and advancing the use of science in natural-resources decision making. Since 1997, Williams has also been Chief of the USGS Cooperative Research Units, a natural-resources science program with research units at 40 universities in 38 states. In that role he has been responsible for strategic planning, budget management, and coordinating research activities with federal, state, and university partners.
After earning MS degrees in mathematics from the University of Oklahoma and statistics from Colorado State University, Williams earned a Ph.D. in rangeland ecology from Colorado State. Prior to his service with USGS, he held science and management positions at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Maryland, then served as Chief of the Office of Migratory Bird Management for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, leader of the Vermont Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at the University of Vermont, and Executive Director of FWS’s North American Waterfowl and Wetlands Office.
Widely published, Williams has authored scholarly papers on issues including adaptive management, biological modeling, vertebrate mapping, waterfowl management, and habitat conservation. Over the past 20 years he has been heavily involved in developing an adaptive framework for integrating science into natural-resource management for the U.S. Department of the Interior, serving as lead author of the DOI Adaptive Management Technical Guide and the DOI Adaptive Management Applications Guide.
“The Wildlife Society has just celebrated its 75th anniversary and reached record membership of nearly 11,000 professionals,” says TWS President Wini Kessler. “At this time of growth and celebration, we are extremely pleased to welcome Ken Williams, a leader of vision who will strengthen our mission to promote science-based wildlife management and conservation for future generations.”