Dr. Sally Guynn, National Conservation Leadership Institute: 304-876-7395 or
Stephen Perry, NHFG: 603-271-2501 or
June 1, 2009

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Stephen Perry
Stephen Perry, Chief of N.H. Fish and Game's Inland Fisheries Division

N.H. Fish and Game Official Stephen Perry Graduates from Groundbreaking Effort to Gear Up Next Generation of Conservation Leaders

Washington, D.C. — Stephen Perry of Sanbornton, N.H., Chief of the Inland Fisheries Division at the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, recently graduated from the National Conservation Leadership Institute, an intense eight-month experience to address one of the nation’s most significant conservation challenges -- preparing and retaining leaders. Perry is one of 33 Fellows from across the country who were selected to participate in the prestigious Institute. 

Already nearly one-third of today’s natural resource leaders are retiring. According to research conducted in 2004, about 77 percent of state fish and wildlife agency senior leadership will retire by 2015, and more than half of federal conservation leaders even sooner.
Executive Director of the Institute, Dr. Sally Guynn, says, “Training alone is insufficient to develop the extraordinary leadership called for in our uncertain times. The Institute is a unique, comprehensive learning experience designed to challenge assumptions, teach skills, facilitate networking, and strengthen confidence. It is not a redundant program; it is a remarkable experience to prepare an extraordinary leadership capacity for the future.”

“To be chosen among a nation of conservation professionals to take part in the third class of the Institute is a great honor,” says Stephen Perry, Chief of Inland Fisheries at the NH Fish and Game Department. “The Institute is very unique and has had a profound impact on me. Leadership development is paramount to ensuring the legacy of natural resource conservation will continue in the future.”
The National Conservation Leadership Institute (NCLI) was created to equip tomorrow’s conservation leaders in adaptive leadership, the cutting-edge connective tissue in the Institute’s curriculum of the latest leadership thinking and practice. Each Fellow learns from some of the nation’s most influential conservation leaders and leadership experts including Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government professor Marty Linsky, co-author of the book, Leadership on the Line. Through the Institute, 21 employees from state fish and wildlife agencies, 6 from federal conservation agencies, 2 tribal members and 4 from nongovernmental organizations worked together over the past eight months on priority leadership challenges and solutions.

“This year, from all across the nation and from the potential hundreds of natural resource related conservation organizations, 33 Fellows were selected through a competitive process to participate in this year’s world class leadership experience,” says Steve Williams, Chairman of the Institute board and President of the Wildlife Management Institute. “Those selected represented a diverse mix of people and perspectives from across the country and across organizational boundaries. The Institute is having a powerful impact.”

In Fall 2008, the 33 Fellows conquered the Institute’s intense 11-day residency at the National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. In late April, the Fellows re-convened at Big Cedar Lodge in Ridgedale, Missouri, to present the results of their six-month leadership challenge projects where they had individually experimented with their learning from the Fall and carried out real, in-the-trenches applications in their respective organizations.

Perry was selected for nomination as a Fellow because of his intense interest in gaining and sharing a distinctive set of leaderships skills that would assist the NH Fish and Game Department address the many challenges it faces at the start of a new century.  Currently, the Department is utilizing the knowledge gained from Perry’s participation as an NCLI Fellow to work towards fostering avid support for New Hampshire’s wildlife resources among a broader and more diverse public.  This initiative is intended to build on the loyal support these resources receive from the Department’s traditional constituency.

Offered each year to a select group of approximately 36 individuals identified by their nominating organizations as “high potentials.” Each Fellow was chosen for their capacity to build effective coalitions, lead organizational change, and deliver results, as well as for their work experience, passion and goals.

The National Conservation Leadership Institute, a 501(c)3 non-profit, is supported by the nation’s most passionate conservation interests. Sponsors include: The Keith Campbell Foundation for the Environment, The Weatherby Foundation, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Boone and Crockett, the Pope and Young Club, and the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies among others.

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The National Conservation Leadership Institute is a non-profit, multi-organizational effort with the single purpose of providing a world class experience for developing extraordinary leaders in natural resource conservation. The National Conservation Leadership Institute does not discriminate according to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, marital status, military status or any other category protected by applicable federal, state and local laws.
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