The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced that Will Meeks is the new Regional Director for the agency’s Midwest Region, overseeing the day-to-day operations and strategic direction of the region which covers Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin.
"Throughout his career, Will has demonstrated great skill in working with communities to manage complex natural resource issues that require collaboration and consensus building,” said Service Director Martha Williams. “He will be an important asset to the Service’s national leadership team as we address a wide variety of future challenges in the Midwest and across the country.”
Meeks spent his childhood in northern Ohio, the son of a natural resource manager. “Growing up on the shores of Lake Erie crafted my conservation legacy,” he said. “I used to take a small boat out to the backwaters and learn about wildlife. I was blessed with that opportunity, and I’m proud to lead the Midwest Region in sharing opportunities for everyone to connect with nature.”
Meeks has more than 28 years of experience working with the Service and was most recently assistant regional director for the National Wildlife Refuge System in the Southeast Region since 2022.
Meeks’ career with the Service started in 1995 at Sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge in South Dakota, and since then his work has spanned multiple states, regions and headquarters. This includes serving as deputy division chief of wildlife resources and conservation planning in Washington, DC, before leading the Habitat and Population Evaluation Team in the Mountain-Prairie Region. Meeks went on to work as assistant regional director for the National Wildlife Refuge System in the Mountain Prairie Region for more than seven years. His next move was to the Southeast Region where he worked as the refuge manager for Savannah Coastal Refuge Complex.
“I’ve seen the Service meet and overcome challenges that at times seemed insurmountable,” said Meeks. “We’ve approached those challenges with scientific excellence, a sense of teamwork and a spirit of cooperation with partners. Let’s keep that great tradition as we face our next challenges and find the many opportunities they hold.”