John Nelson, (603) 868-1095
Peter Whalen, CCANH, (603) 205-5318
Jane Vachon, (603) 271-3211
July 7, 2006

State Marine Division Chief Receives CCA-NH Conservation Award

DURHAM, N.H. -- The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department's Marine Fisheries Division Chief, John Nelson, has been honored as the "2006 Conservationist of the Year" by the Coastal Conservation Association of New Hampshire. Nelson was cited for bringing a steadfast commitment to the conservation and management of marine resources in New Hampshire while serving as the Chief of Fish and Game's Marine Fisheries Division for the past 25 years. During his tenure, Nelson has overseen the conservation, regulation and promotion of marine resources for use by recreational anglers in the state.

Nelson has also been a regional leader in marine fisheries management. He served for over 20 years as New Hampshire's Administrative Commissioner to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC). He has served as chair of the Commission, guiding member states through implementation of its five-year strategic plan and streamlining the Commission's operating procedures. Nelson also has served as chair of several committees within the ASMFC, including those overseeing lobster, striped bass and Atlantic herring. In addition, he has served on the New England Fisheries Management Council for 17 years, holding a number of committee chairman positions.

Nelson's major accomplishments as Marine Fisheries Division Chief in New Hampshire include a streamlined regulatory process, enhanced ecosystem monitoring of marine resources, protection of important habitats within the state's largest estuary, the Great Bay, and outreach efforts that have improved communication and interaction with commercial and recreational fishing constituents.

Nelson also was noted for being "a great supporter of CCA-New Hampshire's efforts to protect New Hampshire's marine resources," according to CCA-NH President Peter Whalen.

The Coastal Conservation Association of New Hampshire is involved in many restoration projects along New Hampshire's seacoast. Visit

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department is the guardian of the state's fish, wildlife and marine resources and their habitats.

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For a photo of John Nelson, please contact


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