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The Mountain-Prairie Region


U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
134 Union Boulevard
Lakewood, Colorado 80228


January 27, 2006

Contact:  Sharon Rose 303-236-4580

Mitch King Named Regional Director and Jay Slack Named Deputy Regional Director for the Mountain-Prairie Region of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today the selection of Mitch King as the new Regional Director, and Jay Slack, as Deputy Regional Director, of the Mountain-Prairie Region, headquartered in Denver, Colorado.  The Mountain-Prairie Region includes Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas.

Mitch King, a 29-year veteran of the Service, was named Acting Regional Director of the Mountain-Prairie Region in December 2005.  Prior to this appointment, he was Assistant Director for Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration in Washington, D.C.

Jay Slack has been with the Service for 14 years.  He comes to the Mountain-Prairie Region after serving eight years as the Field Supervisor of the South Florida Ecological Service Field Office in Vero Beach, Florida, where he was in charge of wildlife management activities involving endangered species, habitat conservation, private lands, environmental contaminants, and fisheries.

"Jay and I are looking forward to working with our State partners, other Federal agencies, private organizations, and the public to meet the needs of natural resources while balancing the needs of private citizens,” said King.

Mitch King previously held a number of positions in the Service’s Southeast Region, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, including Deputy Regional Director, Acting Regional Chief of the National Wildlife Refuge System, Assistant Regional Director of Migratory Birds and State Programs, Geographic Assistant Regional Director for portions of the Southeast, and Field Supervisor for the Georgia Ecological Services Office in Brunswick, Georgia. He has previous experience in the Mountain Prairie Region, having worked as Assistant Project Leader for the Montana Fish and Wildlife Management Assistance office in Bozeman, Montana, and in positions associated with implementation of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan.  He also served on a special detail to the International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies in Washington, D.C.  He holds a degree in Wildlife and Fisheries Science from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.

Prior to his time in Florida, Jay Slack worked in Washington, D.C. as Chief of the Endangered Species Listing Program and as the national coordinator for endangered species section 7 consultation.  He joined the Service as a herpetologist in the Phoenix, Arizona, Ecological Services Office.  Prior to his Service experience, Slack coordinated a fisheries research program. He earned a bachelors degree in botany in 1986 and a masters degree in ecology in 1988 from Illinois State University, where he also completed post-graduate work in vertebrate ecology.

 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 95-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System, which encompasses 545 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 69 national fish hatcheries, 64 fishery resources offices and 81 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign and Native American tribal governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Assistance program, which distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.

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