2023 Conservation Pioneer Award: Jim Heffelfinger

DSC has selected Jim Heffelfinger as the recipient of the 2023 Conservation Trailblazer Award. This award celebrates the monumental contribution of wildlife professionals to the field of game and non-game wildlife conservation, including wildlife management. wildlife and habitat, applied research and policy.

Heffelfinger will receive the award, plus a $10,000 contribution in his name to the conservation project he selects, at the Thursday night banquet at DSC’s 41st Annual Convention & Expo, taking place May 5-8. January 2023.

Heffelfinger currently serves as the Wildlife Science Coordinator for the Arizona Game and Fish Department and as an Adjunct Professor and Full Research Scientist at the University of Arizona. He has also worked for private landowners, the USDI Bureau of Land Management, and various universities as a wildlife research assistant and wildlife biologist. Heffelfinger was a regional game specialist for the Arizona Game and Fish Department for more than 20 years.

“Jim is a leading deer expert in the United States. He is a consummate professional who diligently sides with science and not emotion or politics. The impact of his experience, leadership with the scientific community, and ability to take complex scientific information and communicate it to a diversity of audiences make Jim worthy of consideration for this prestigious award,” Casey Stemler, Department Big Game Migration Coordinator Interior, he says.

For more than 30 years, Heffelfinger has focused primarily on big game and various species of deer. He is the chair of the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (WAFWA) Mule Deer Working Group. He is the author of his own book “Deer of the Southwest,” led the writing of the North American Mule Deer Conservation Plan, and is lead editor of the forthcoming book “North American Black-tailed and Mule Deer Ecology and Management “. He has also been instrumental in helping to coordinate and implement the Department of Interior Secretary’s Order on Big Game Winter Range and Migration, both in Arizona and with other state WAFWA biologists.

In addition, Heffelfinger has also written more than 300 journal articles and 20 book chapters in regional, national and international publications. He has published dozens of scientific articles and has written television scripts for outdoor television shows. He has participated in approximately 25 podcasts and maintains his own website called www.deernut.com.

“Given his incredible body of work and ability to communicate with broad audiences that have manifested profound conservation impact, along with a long list of existing recognition and achievement awards for that work and impact, I just couldn’t think of a better qualified candidate. for DSC’s Conservation Trailblazer Award,” said Edward B. Arnett, executive director of The Wildlife Society.

The 2023 DSC Convention & Expo will take place at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center and Omni Hotel in Dallas, January 5-8, 2022. Athletes are invited to be a part of another exciting event to help support the conservation, education and hunting. promotional initiatives around the world.

About DSC

A member of IUCN, DSC is a mission-focused conservation organization funded by hunters from around the world. With a small administrative staff and a volunteer army of 500, DSC hosts its annual Convention which raises funds for conservation, education and advocacy grants. In the last three years, more than $5 million has been channeled to qualified projects, organizations and programs in support of our mission. Get involved with DSC at www.biggame.org.

About DSCF

The DSC Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation organized under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended. The DSC Foundation fulfills DSC’s mission to conserve wildlife and wildlands, educate youth and the general public, and promote and protect the rights and interests of hunters throughout the world. Learn more about the DSC Foundation at www.dscf.org.

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