----- Forwarded by Rich Greenwood/R3/FWS/DOI on 07/19/2001 09:44 AM ----- (Embedded image moved to file: pic29657.pcx) DO NOT REPLY TO THIS ADDRESS - SEE MESSAGE FOR CONTACT INFO! From R3 External Affairs Subject Norton Praises President Bush's Intention to Nominate Steve Williams as Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Embedded image moved to file: pic07958.pcx) Office of the Secretary For Immediate Release: July 18, 2001 Contact: Eric Ruff 202/208-6416 Norton Praises President Bush's Intention to Nominate Steve Williams as Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (WASHINGTON) - Interior Secretary Gale Norton today praised President George W. Bush's intention to nominate Steven A. Williams as Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Williams must be confirmed by the United States Senate before serving in the position. "Steve Williams is an avid outdoorsman whose professional experience and leadership skills make him an excellent candidate for Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service," said Secretary Norton. "In his current position Steve has demonstrated a strong ability to bring together groups of various interests to create opportunities as well as to resolve natural resource issues." Williams is Secretary of the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks in Topeka. This is a Governor's cabinet-level position responsible for the administration of fish, wildlife, state parks, and conservation law enforcement. He has held the position since 1995. Prior to his current position, Williams was Deputy Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Game Commission from 1992-1995; Assistant Director for Wildlife for the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife from 1989-1992; and a wildlife biologist specializing in research and management for white-tailed deer for the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife from 1985-1989. He served as a graduate research assistant at Pennsylvania State University from 1981-1985, working on wildlife habitat analysis, and also worked as a graduate teaching assistant at the University of North Dakota from 1979-1981. Williams, 44, is a professionally trained wildlife manager who holds a PhD in Forest Resources from Pennsylvania State University, an MS in biology from the University of North Dakota at Grand Forks, and a BS in Environmental Resource Management from Pennsylvania State University. He is a member of the International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, The Wildlife Society, and other professional and conservation related groups. By law, the Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must have scientific education and experience in the principles of fisheries and wildlife management. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal Federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting, and enhancing fish, wildlife, and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 94-million acre National Wildlife Refuge System and enforces Federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Aid program that distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies. -DOI- Our mission is working with others to conserve , protect, and enhance, fish, wildlife, and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit to the American people.