MEMPHIS, Tenn., March 24, 2011 ─
Though he retired as chief conservation officer from Ducks Unlimited in September 2010, Dr. Alan Wentz is still landing honors for his successful career in conservation. Most recently, Wentz was named the recipient of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan's International Canvasback Award for his significant long-term contributions to the implementation of the NAWMP's conservation activities throughout North America. Wentz was presented the award at the Boone and Crockett Club dinner at the North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference in Kansas City, Mo., last week.
Wentz served as CCO for DU from 1994-2010, and under his leadership during this 16-year period, DU conserved 3.87 million acres of critical wildlife habitat across the United States. This represents almost 90 percent of DU's total acreage accomplishments in the United States since its U.S. conservation program began in 1984.
"The North American Waterfowl Management Plan is one of the great success stories of conservation, and to receive this award is both humbling and gratifying," Wentz said. "My involvement with NAWMP has afforded me many opportunities to influence the conservation of waterfowl and waterfowl habitat in North America, and for that, I am eternally grateful."
While with DU, Wentz provided primary leadership in international collaboration with Ducks Unlimited Canada and Ducks Unlimited de Mexico to conserve waterfowl habitats throughout North America. Under his direction, the three organizations developed the International Conservation Plan that guides DU's conservation work across the continent. Wentz saw to it that the ICP adopted the broad goals of the NAWMP as the framework for DU's international conservation efforts.
Among Wentz's most significant contributions to North American waterfowl conservation was his long-time appointment to the North American Wetlands Conservation Council. As an initial member of the council in 1990-01, he participated during its critical formative years. He returned to the council in 1996, and over the proceeding 14 years, his wisdom and expertise proved invaluable in guiding the council's oversight of more than $1 billion for continental wetland conservation.
Ducks Unlimited is the world's largest non-profit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 12 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across the continent. Guided by science and dedicated to program efficiency, DU works toward the vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever.