The Senate Tourism and Wildlife Committee voted May 15 to confirm longtime Wildlife Commissioner John D. Groendyke of Enid, Okla., to serve a sixth term as a member of the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Commission. Groendyke was reappointed by Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin and is the longest-serving wildlife commissioner in the state's history.
Groendyke, who has served on the commission since 1976, has been a great friend and strong supporter of Ducks Unlimited. In part due to his support, DU and the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC) have partnered to improve habitat and increase public hunting opportunities on numerous wildlife management areas throughout the state.
"John has been especially supportive of public wetlands acquisition and was instrumental is gaining sportsmen's support for the Hackberry Flat and Drummond Flat projects, which protected 13,000 acres of important wetland habitats in Oklahoma," said Dr. Scott Manley, DU director of conservation programs. These areas are both of continental significance to migrating waterfowl.
The eight-member commission oversees ODWC operations, including land and equipment purchases, wildlife management areas, plus the state's hunting and fishing regulations. The group also appoints the department's director. Commissioners are appointed by the governor and require Senate confirmation. Groendyke's term will begin in July and run through 2020.