2013 Awards

2013 Award Recipients

Presented by President Linda Leeman, January 31, 2013

The following awards were presented at the TWS-WS Banquet on Thursday January 31, 2013.

The Raymond F. Dasmann Award for the Professional of the Year went to Dr. Brian Cypher the Associate Director California State University – Stanislaus, Endangered Species Recovery Program, Bakersfield, CA. Over the past 40 some odd years of his professional career, Dr Cypher’s contributions represent important and significant additions to our body of knowledge dealing with kit fox and other small-mid sized mammals. Brian’s research emphasis is canids and other predators, but other research experience includes work with small mammals, reptiles, ungulates, and plants. Dr. Cypher is considered one of the foremost experts if not the foremost expert in kit fox ecology. Has worked extensively on endangered San Joaquin kit foxes, but also worked on endangered island foxes, red foxes, gray foxes, coyotes, and gray wolves, and indirectly with swift foxes and corsac foxes. He is internationally known for his research on canids, especially San Joaquin kit foxes. He has been involved with research and conservation efforts on animals and plants in the California San Joaquin Valley since 1990.

The Conservationist of the Year Award – This year we are very pleased to honor the Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) for their dedication to the conservation of desert habitat throughout southern California. The Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) was created by legislation in 1947 to administer a capital outlay program for wildlife conservation and related public recreation. Originally created within the California Department of Natural Resources, and later placed with the Department of Fish and Game, WCB is a separate and independent Board with authority and funding to carry out an acquisition and development program for wildlife conservation. Since 1947 the WCB has allocated over $2,500,000,000 (that’s billions) to various projects (acquistions, restorations, conservation easements, public access, etc.).

The Barrett A. Garrison Outstanding Mentor Award. This award was bestowed upon Dr. Mark Colwell. Dr. Colwell started at Humboldt State in 1989 as an Assistant Professor and earned tenure in 1998. Mark was a Fulbright Fellow in Russia in 1995-96 and voted as Scholar of the Year at Humboldt State in 2007. Mark has been mentoring students for nearly 25 years. He is dedicated to assisting wildlife students, at all levels, to develop their skills as scientists and pursue careers in wildlife biology. He inspires students to think critically for themselves and to seek answers to important ecological questions. Often, people can attribute their success to the assistance and guidance they received from a few key mentors during the course of their development. Mark has been one of those mentors to many students and colleagues over the years.

The Chapter of the Year Award went to the San Joaquin Valley Chapter. 2012 has been a very busy year for the San Joaquin Valley Chapter. They have continued to offer a diversity of activities that facilitate social networking, professional development, and involvement in the broader Wildlife Society organization. In addition, they put on two workshops, the annual San Joaquin Valley Natural Communities Conference, and supported research grants and conservation groups with over $5,000. The San Joaquin Valley Chapter membership increased by over 40% in 2012.

The Raymond F. Dasmann Award for the Professional of the Year went to Dr. Brian Cypher.
The Conservationist of the Year Award went to California Wildlife Conservation Board. Acceptingfor the WCB is Peter Perrine.
The Chapter of the Year Award went to the San Joaquin Valley Chapter. Accepting for the San Joaquin Valley Chapter is Linda Connolly.
The Barrett A. Garrison Mentor of the Year Award went to Dr. Mark Colwell.

The following TWS member received a past-presidents pin for his service to the Western Section at the annual business meeting:

  • John McNerney, Past-President 2011

The following TWS members received plaques for their service to the Western Section at the annual business meeting:

  • Linda Leeman, President 2012
  • Douglas Bell, President-Elect 2012
  • Mike Lohr, Hawaii Chapter Representative 2011-2012
  • Sandra Hunt-Von Arb, California North Coast Chapter Representative 2009-2012

The following students received an award at the annual banquet:
Oral Presentations:

  • 1st – $200, Kelly Weintraub, Nest Survival of Tri-Colored Blackbirds in California’s San Joaquin Valley
  • 2nd – $150, Laurel Serieys, The Genetic Structure of a Disease Outbreak Associated with Poison Exposure
  • 3rd – $100, Jennifer Rowe, Cascading Impacts on Amphibian Assemblages in Restored Wetlands


  • 1st – $200, Julie Shaw, Characterizing Migration Patterns, Winter habitat, and Diet of Northern Saw-Whet Owls (Aegolius acadicus) in the Sierra Nevada Foothills of California
  • 2nd – $150, Mary Jo Olegario, A STR Multiplex for Columbian Black-tailed Deer
  • 3rd – $100, Rebecca Green, Maternal Rest Sites: Unique Shelter Used by Female Fishers Rearing Kits