SCBNA Policy Update

Although the results of the recent US elections will bring major changes in US federal government policies that affect biodiversity conservation, SCBNA is committed to remaining a strong voice for promoting the application of rigorous science to conservation management and policy. We are working to strengthen our network of contacts in DC in order to join in solidarity with the larger scientific community on emerging issues, via sign-on letters (SCBNA recently signed onto a letter to the Trump administration led by AIBS) and more substantive efforts.

SCBNA will continue to constructively partner with and support government initiatives where doing so advances conservation science and practice, but will also work to inform our members and the public where we see policies that do not appropriately incorporate conservation science or negatively affect biodiversity. We will continue to focus on three priority policy areas (defense of scientific integrity in government decision-making, conservation of endangered species, and landscape planning for climate change adaptation), where we can provide value that is additive to the work of larger scientific societies and NGOs. With the likely political pressure that will be coming to bear on the US Endangered Species Act and public lands, SCBNA can play a key long-term role in important policy issues in both a reactive (defensive) and proactive manner.  Despite the current turmoil around the incoming administration, we believe that effective policy work is still a marathon and staying focused is important to long-term success.

SCBNA is represented in DC policy circles by our policy committee co-chair, Brett Hartl, who is the former SCB Senior Policy Fellow. Brett ’s involvement allows SCBNA to participate as a member of coalitions with like-minded DC-based groups, such as the new Integrity in Science Working Group co-chaired by the Union of Concerned Scientists and the Reproductive Health Technologies Project. ISWG is a coalition of scientific societies and good government, public health, environmental, and other public interest organizations working to create a movement around defending the role of science in a democracy. The invitation to join ISWG came out of a successful symposium on scientific integrity organized by SCBNA at the NACCB2016 meeting.

Call for nominations to the SCBNA board of directors

The Society for Conservation Biology’s North America Section (SCBNA) invites you to nominate SCBNA members to stand for election to the following offices on the SCBNA Board of Directors. Every board member attends one in-person meeting and several virtual meetings per year. Historically, most nominations have been self-nominations. Before you nominate someone other than yourself, please ask that person if she or he is willing to be considered. Please indicate the office(s) for which you seek consideration. Each nominee must be a current member of SCBNA. After reviewing nominees, the SCBNA Nominations Committee will put forward the slate of candidates for each office and announce the start of voting. The term of each elected officer will begin July 1, 2017.

The call for nominations is open now through Wednesday March 1.
The open seats are:
• President-Elect (6 year term: 2 years as President-Elect, 2 years as President, 2 years as Past-President)
• Treasurer (3 year term)
• VP for Policy and Programs (3 year term)
• VP for Education and Chapters (3 year term)
• Student representative (2 year term; must be a student in conservation biology or a closely related field and attending an accredited university or college)
• Chapters representative (2 year term; must be a member of one of SCBNA’s local chapters).
To submit a nomination, or to request additional information, please email the SCBNA President Carlos Carroll <klamathconservation@gmail.com>. Please indicate ‘SCBNA elections’ in the subject line.

Meet SCBNA’s new Administrative Director, Jamie Hogberg

SCBNA recently finalized the hiring of an Administrative Director (AD). Jamie Hogberg, the new SCBNA AD, was chair of the recent NACCB meeting in Madison. Jamie’s background is in both conservation science research and administration. Her work in human-wildlife interactions led to her to become active in SCB’s Social Science Working Group. More recently, she helped develop a successful Environmental Conservation MS Program at University of Wisconsin’s Nelson Institute. Since Jamie is SCBNA’s sole staffperson, her job entails a lot of different aspects, including administrative, finance, conference management, governance, and outreach duties. Part of her job will be to improve communication between SCBNA and members through regular newsletters and social media updates. Jamie will also be closely involved in organizing the NACCB2018 meeting. NACCB2018’s theme is Conservation Science, Policy, and Practice: Connecting the Urban to the Wild. NACCB2018 will be held at the Westin Harbour Castle Conference Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, from July 21-26, 2018. Planning for NACCB2018 is well under way, and we will have materials to share soon. Toronto is a diverse and exciting city which will make a great location for the 2018 meeting.