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Plenary Session 1

Tom Melius

Regional Director for the Midwest Region, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Tom Melius was appointed to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Oct. 12, 2008. Prior to his Midwest region post, he completed a successful watch over the vast, rugged expanse of the Service's Alaska region. In his new role, Melius governs a region that employs 1,088 people, manages 1.29 million acres of land, and has field offices in eight states: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin.
     A native of the Great Plains, Melius brings a diverse background and a wealth of experience to the Midwest. Prior to his stewardship in Alaska, he served as Assistant Director for External Affairs in the Washington Office from March 2003 to April 2006. He oversaw the national programs for Public Affairs, Congressional and Legislative Affairs, and the office of the Native American Liaison. He also provided oversight to the Service's National Conservation Training Center located in Shepherdstown, West Virginia.
     Prior to his time in External Affairs, Melius served as Assistant Director for Migratory Birds and State Programs. In that position he developed policy, advised the Directorate, and served as its representative on issues relating to the conservation and management of migratory birds, implementation of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan and wetlands programs, Federal Duck Stamps, federal grant programs, and conservation partnerships. He was responsible for and directed the offices of Migratory Bird Management, Bird Habitat Conservation, Conservation Partnership Liaison, and Federal Aid.
     From July 1997 to October 1998, Melius was the Director of Conservation Policy and Senior Advisor at the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. From January 1995 to June 1997, he was a senior professional staff member on the U.S. Senate's Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, where he formulated policy for fishery management with the National Marine Fisheries Service and the U.S. Coast Guard; and for coastal programs with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. He also advised the Committee on international conservation matters involving wildlife trade, marine mammals and endangered species.
     From 1985 to 1995, Melius was a professional staff member on the Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries in the U.S. House of Representatives. There he advised the Committee on issues concerning fish and wildlife legislation.
     Melius earned his bachelor's degree in wildlife biology in 1973 and a master's degree in 1975 in fish and wildlife science from South Dakota State University. His broad range of experience, both within and outside the Service, has left him well qualified to deal with the challenges and stewardship opportunities throughout the diverse Midwest lands and waters.

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Call 612-301-1210 or email: ArbEdu@umn.edu

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