Ducks Unlimited Western Region Director of Operations Jeff McCreary recently received the Bruce Wolf Spirit of Conservation Award, recognizing his commitment to wetland and waterfowl conservation.

The San Francisco Bay Joint Venture (SFBJV), one of 18 joint ventures in North America formed under the North American Waterfowl Management Plan, established the award to recognize individuals and organizations conserving wetland habitats in the San Francisco Estuary. The inaugural award was posthumously presented to Bruce Wolfes family in recognition of his decades of contributions to conservation. Wolfe was a long-time SFBJV champion, served for almost 20 years on the SFBJV Management Board, and served as an executive officer of the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board.

McCreary received his bachelors degree in wildlife biology from the University of California at Davis and his masters degree in wetland ecology from Duke University.

He began his DU career in 1999 as a biologist covering Idaho, eastern Nevada and Utah. In 2004 he became an outreach biologist in California, working closely with the DU regional directors and state volunteer leadership teams to spread the word about DUs conservation successes.

Bruce was a regulator that wanted to say yes, McCreary said. I think he taught all of us to not look at regulations and regulators as a barrier to our projects but as partners in the conservation of the San Francisco Bay.

McCreary has chaired the SFBJV Management Board for three years. He is the United States co-chair of the Pacific Birds Habitat Joint Venture, a National Conservation Leadership Institute fellow, and previously served as the management board chair of the Central Valley Joint Venture and chair of The Association of Joint Venture Management Boards.

The solutions to the challenges of today are achieved through the dedication and passion of people like Bruce, McCreary said. I am truly honored to follow in his footsteps and carry forward the passion for conservation he brought to the Joint Venture partnership.

Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 15 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. For more information on our work, visit