Lessons in Leadership: Integrating Courage, Vision, and Innovation for the Future of Sustainable Fisheries

Leadership in Action: Lessons from a Multistate Fisheries Collaboration

Andrew K. Carlson, William W. Taylor, Dennis R. DeVries, Melissa R. Wuellner, and Michael T. Kinnison

doi: https://doi.org/10.47886/9781934874608.ch69

In coordinating this book, our goal was to provide information and inspiration for fisheries leaders of today and tomorrow to lead at all levels of their personal and professional lives, ensuring that fisheries ecosystems and allied human systems are in capable hands for many years to come. Although the preceding vignettes—spanning many lifetimes of knowledge, experience, and wisdom—were invaluable in helping achieve this vision, we leave you with a different kind of leadership story.

The landscape of fisheries conservation has multiple interconnected components, including universities, fisheries management agencies (e.g., state, federal, provincial, tribal), nongovernmental organizations, private consulting firms, and fishers themselves, to name a few. State fisheries management agencies play an instrumental role in protecting and enhancing fish populations in their respective states—a role that is perhaps quite familiar to fisheries professionals and stakeholders such as anglers, boaters, and lakeshore property owners. However, you may be surprised that state agricultural experiment stations (AESs) fill an important niche in protecting and enhancing fisheries. Agricultural experiment stations are scientific research centers located at U.S. land-grant universities. Although their mission is multidimensional, AESs focus on cultivating knowledge to enhance natural resource and agricultural supply chains and ultimately enrich food production and societal well-being, locally to nationwide. In addition to farmers and ranchers, AES scientists work with aquaculturists and fish producers through state-specific initiatives and larger programs such as regional aquaculture centers, strongholds for aquaculture research, development, and extension activities supported by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).