|Congressman Dingell has been a member of the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission since 1969.|
It’s not often that we can feel history being made as it happens. The significant events in our lives usually pass by in a blur, their importance understood only when we revisit them years later.
That wasn’t the case today – the last day that Congressman John Dingell held a seat on the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission. Everyone in the room understood that an era was ending, the likes of which we probably won’t see again.
In a few days, Congressman Dingell will likewise end his long tenure in the House of Representatives, confronting us with the nearly unimaginable reality of a United States Congress – and a conservation movement – without him.
His retirement means that for the first time since 1933 – when his father, John Dingell, Sr. was sworn in – that a John Dingell won’t represent Michigan in Congress. Congressman Dingell succeeded his father, John Dingell Sr. in 1955. His departure, along with that of Congressman Ralph Hall of Texas, also leaves Congress without any World War II veterans in its ranks for the first time in nearly 70 years.
We have all been extraordinarily privileged to work with Congressman Dingell, who has done as much as anyone in the past century to ensure that our nation’s fish and wildlife resources are sustained for future generations. Through his leadership and hard work, millions of Americans are able to hunt, fish and observe wildlife every day at thousands of wildlife refuges, parks, nature reserves and other amazing places across the nation.