FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 2, 2002
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces that Jon Andrew has been selected as the new Chief of the National Wildlife Refuge System for the Southeast Region. Andrew, a 20-year veteran of the agency, has worked on national wildlife refuges throughout the country. Most recently, he served as the Chief of the Division of Migratory Bird Management in Arlington, Virginia.
"I am thrilled to welcome Jon Andrew back to the Southeast to lead the National Wildlife Refuge program," said Sam D. Hamilton, Southeast Regional Director. "Jon is a great addition to the region. This is an especially important time for refuges in the Southeast as we enter the final countdown to the centennial celebration of the National Wildlife Refuge System on March 14, 2003. Jon's leadership will be essential to the success of the centennial, since the first refuge, Pelican Island, is in the Southeast."
Before serving in the Division of Migratory Bird Management, Andrew also served as Chief of the Branch of Planning and Policy for the National Wildlife Refuge program in Washington D.C. He has worked on refuges throughout the country, and served as refuge manager at several, including Lower Rio Grande Valley/Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge Complex in Alamo, Texas; Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge in Austin, Texas (which he helped establish); and National Key Deer Refuge in the Florida Keys. He also worked in research and land acquisition planning for the refuge system in Alaska and North Dakota. Andrew also served in a senior staff position in the Atlanta regional office.
His love of refuges and his background working in wildlife biology and management, along with the policy experience he gained in Washington, D.C., will bring many assets to one of the most important jobs in the Service.
"I am truly honored to be returning to the Southeast to be in a position to support and lead the refuge system during the Centennial celebration," said Andrew. "The National Wildlife Refuge System is where my heart is, and I'm looking forward to continuing to build strong relationships with the States to protect our natural heritage. I can think of no better place to be when the system turns 100 than in the Southeast, where it all started."
Andrew, a native of Framingham, Massachusetts, earned his bachelor's degree in Environmental Science from Unity College in Unity, Maine. He received a master's degree in Wildlife Management from Frostburg State in Frostburg, Maryland. He and his wife Alison look forward to living again in Atlanta, and will return with their three-month-old Labrador retriever, Gillie. Jon is an avid duck hunter, fly fisherman, bird watcher and book collector. Coincidently, he is also a Theodore Roosevelt afficionado and collects TR memorabilia. How fitting since Theodore Roosevelt established the first 54 national wildlife refuges in the country almost 100 years ago.
Andrew replaces Steve Thompson who left the Southeast to become Manager of the California/Nevada Operations Office of the Fish and Wildlife Service in Sacramento, California.
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 that encompasses more than 538 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 70 national fish hatcheries, 64 fishery resource offices and 78 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 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.
NOTE: You can view our releases or subscribe to receive them -- via e-mail -- at the Service's Southeast Regional home page at http://southeast.fws.gov. Our national home page is at: http://news.fws.gov/newsreleases/.
Atlanta, GA 30345
Phone: 404/679-7289 Fax: 404/679-7286