The Trumpeter Swan Society Announces New Associate Director – Becky Abel

Becky brings several years of nonprofit management and migratory bird conservation experience to her role as the new Associate Director of The Trumpeter Swan Society.

Prior to joining the staff of TTSS, Becky served for eight years as Executive Director of the Wisconsin Wetlands Association, which grew in size, influence and profile and earned statewide and international awards under her leadership. Before that, she worked for seven years in various roles for The Nature Conservancy, the most recent position as Conservation Planner for their Migratory Bird Program (formerly Wings of the Americas.) Becky led conservation planning efforts at scales that range from the site level to large-scale planning for birds that spanned three countries and involved multiple partners.

Becky holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Wildlife Ecology from University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her graduate work involved designing a successful technique for reintroducing Trumpeter Swans to Wisconsin that involved imprinting cygnets on a life-sized swan decoy and rearing them in the wild. Trumpeter Swans released using this technique showed high survival and strong site fidelity and established migratory traditions. (Wisconsin’s decoy-reared birds were the first Trumpeter Swans to pioneer wintering at the Riverlands Migratory Bird Sanctuary, now possibly the second largest wintering area for Trumpeter Swans in the lower 48.)

Becky served on the Board of The Trumpeter Swan Society from 2007 until she stepped down in November 2011 to accept the Associate Director position. Since 2006, she has also been on the board executive committee of Community Shares of Wisconsin, a social change organization that supports 50 environmental and social justice organizations through workplace giving campaigns, training, and technical assistance. She has served on the steering committee of the Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative and was the 2008 North American representative for the World Wetlands Network, a network of worldwide NGOs dedicated to wetland conservation.

Becky is based in Madison, Wisconsin. In her free time, she enjoys reading, camping, paddling, horseback riding, and sharing her love of the outdoors with her kids.

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