Dr. Gordon Orians, renowned behavioral ecologist and professor emeritus of biology at the University of Washington (UW), was elected chair of the Washington state board of trustees of The Nature Conservancy on July 15.He joined the board in 2006.
A long-time leader in the environmental sciences, Orians, who has been inducted into both the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, served for 10 years as the director of the UW Institute for Environmental Studies.
During his 35 years as a UW professor of zoology, Orians conducted extensive research into the complex and often delicate relationships that exist between ecology and animal social organization and behavior. His research has shed light on habitat selection, mate selection and mating systems, selection of prey and foraging patches, and plant-herbivore interactions.
Collaborating with psychologists, geographers, planners, and landscape painters, Orians has worked to make the discoveries of the laboratory known and accessible to the public. Orians has published many important articles highlighting the interface between science and policy.
“Dr. Orians has been a leader in the environmental world for many years,” said state director Karen Anderson. “His deep scientific insight will help shape our work as we move forward in this crucial time for conservation.”
“I am honored to be asked to serve as chair of the Board of Trustees for the Conservancy’s Washington program,” Orians said. “The state program has new and vigorous leadership and talented and dedicated staff that are supported by a dedicated board of trustees. This is a perfect organization for me to work with because science plays a strong role in guiding its work. All of us at the Conservancy are focusing our efforts to deliver major conservation successes in Washington.”
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org.