2018 Award Recipients
The following awards were presented at the TWS-WS Banquet on Wednesday February 7, 2018 by TWS-WS President Dr. Ralph (Rocky) Gutierrez.
The Raymond F. Dasmann Award for the Professional of the Year went to Kevin Hunting.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is one of the oldest and largest state wildlife agencies in the United States. Kevin’s job as Chief Deputy of the Department is equivalent to a chief operating officer. He championed the creation of the Department’s first Science Institute to improve scientific community among the agency’s scientists. Kevin chaired national efforts between state wildlife agencies on climate change adaptation that led to the state’s wildlife adaptation strategies to climate change. Kevin is recognized as a national leader in wildlife assessments of large-scale renewable energy projects and was the Department’s liaison on many federal task forces and the state’s efforts to build a portfolio of renewable energy assets while minimizing environmental impacts.
|The Conservationist of the Year Award went to the Endangered Species Recovery Program (ESRP). Accepting for ESRP was Dr. Patrick Kelly, ESRP Director.
The ESRP facilitates endangered species recovery and resolves conservation conflicts through scientifically based recovery planning and implementation. It was established in 1992 at the request and support of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and Bureau of Reclamation and is administered by California State University, Stanislaus. The ESRP has conducted 25 years of research and management focused on recovering endangered species within the San Joaquin Valley. It has a long history of cooperation with other agencies and universities and has trained dozens of conservation professionals.
|The Chapter of the Year Award went to the San Joaquin Valley Chapter. Accepting for the San Joaquin Valley Chapter was current Chapter President Larry Saslaw.
Among the many accomplishments in 2017, the San Joaquin Valley Chapter held a N
Conference in Bakersfield, published 93-page field guide to the plants of the southern San Joaquin Valley, offered a rare plant field trip to the Carrizo Plain, and held a three-day advanced tracking workshop in Tulare County. The Chapter also created the Champion for Wildlife award to recognize outstanding contributions to the conservation of wildlife in the San Joaquin Valley. In addition, they organized talks by local wildlife professionals and a meadow restoration activity in Yosemite for the TWS student conclave. They also provided over $12,000 in funding to support the TWS student conclave, thesis research, travel grants to the TWS-WS annual conference, and the rehabilitation of mange-afflicted San Joaquin kit foxes.
||The Barrett A. Garrison Mentor of the Year Award went to Dr. Benjamin Sacks.
During his time as faculty at UC Davis, Dr. Sacks has mentored many students and professionals, including 3 post-doctoral scholars, 2 visiting international students, 23 wildlife graduate students, 2 veterinary school students, 29 undergraduate interns, and 6 technical staff. His mentoring has led numerous students to further academic pursuits and professional placement. His curiosity, availability, and patience has defined mentorship.
The following TWS-WS member received a past-president’s pin for service to the Western Section:
Rachel Sprague, Past-President 2017
The following TWS-WS members received plaques for their service to the Western Section:
Dr. Ralph (Rocky) Gutiérrez, President 2017
Jeff Davis, President-Elect 2017
Jessica Martini-Lamb, Professional Development Committee Chair 2015-2017
Rachel Sprague, Hawaii Chapter Representative 2012-2015
Mackenzie Jeffress, Nevada Chapter Representative 2014-2016
Student Presentation winners:
1st Place: Aviv Karasov-Olson, HABITAT ASSOCIATIONS OF SMALL MAMMALS ALONG AN ELEVATION GRADIENT IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, University of California, Davis
2nd Place: Brent Barry, STATUS OF FISHER POPULATIONS IN OREGON, Oregon State University
3rd Place: Tierra Groff, UNEXPECTED CONSPECIFIC LEUCOCYTOZOON INFECTION IN WOODPECKERS AND CORVIDS, San Francisco State University
1st Place: Michelle Harris, WILDLIFE MORTALITIES IN OPEN TOP PIPES IN THE SOUTH FORK KERN RIVER VALLEY, KERN COUNTY, CALIFORNIA, Humboldt State University & Southern Sierra Research Station
2nd Place: Alex Single, IMPACT OF NESTING MICROHABITAT AND FORAGING HABITAT ON COLONY LOCATIONS OF THE NORTHERN BLACK SWIFT (CYPSELOIDES NIGER BOREALIS), California State University, Fresno
3rd Place: Alyssa Semerdjian, EVALUATING THE SPECIES DISTRIBUTION FOR THE GIANT KANGAROO RAT (DIPODOMYS INGENS), Humboldt State University