Tag Archives: Women’s History Month

Wednesday Wisdom – Terry Tempest Williams

bluebells- terry tempest williams

Original image by Anne Post/USFWS

Author, naturalist and activist Terry Tempest Williams has long inspired women conservationists with her bold views of wilderness and the symbolic ways wide open landscapes mirror an inner and sometimes spiritual journey toward individual courage and freedom.  Her book, Refuge, chronicles habitat restoration efforts at the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge in Utah in combination with a parallel and very poignant story of her mother’s illness and death. Her stories are about healing the land and healing the soul.

We celebrate #‎WomensHistoryMonth‬  to spotlight the legacy of women conservationists throughout history no matter how long ago and even now as women make history everyday.

Like this Virginia Bluebell unfolding on a May day at the FWS‘s National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, WV, Terry Tempest William’s storytelling peels back the leaves of meaning to reveal beauty and truth. Her writing and activism will go down in history as an inspiration to those who work with “boots on the ground” to preserve our wild places.

Sharing #herstory for Women’s History Month – Beth Ciuzio Freiday

We’re celebrating Women’s History Month by highlighting some of the amazing skilled and dedicated women we have working in the Service.

Beth Freiday-herstory

Name: Beth Ciuzio Freiday

Title: Partners for Wildlife Coordinator

Duty station: New Jersey Field Office

Amount of time worked in public service:  15 years

How much of this at USFWS? 6 years

Who is your female conservation hero or mentor? Why?

I am quite inspired by Secretary Jewel. She has spent a fair amount of her career in business, but her transition to head of the Department of the Interior was seamless. She is an example to me that you can literally do anything you put your mind toward doing.

When you began your career, did you ever see yourself working for USFWS?

No, I thought I wanted to work for a state agency. But I did that and it was not what I expected it to be.

The mission of the Service is “Working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people” How do you contribute to this mission?

As a Partners for Wildlife biologist, I am most successful at my job when I influence the actions of private landowners. So the core part of my work is focused on our mission.

It takes a special person to dedicate their lives to public service. Why did you choose this path?

I like to be challenged at work. Public service is challenging, but the rewards of helping people and the environment are worth the work.

What do you like best about working for the USFWS?

What I like best about the USFWS is that we are always pushing ourselves to improve, learn, and be better at whatever we are doing. I like the focus on professional development. When I walk in a room, my colleagues know they are working with someone who is well trained and knowledgeable. I can only be that person with the support of my organization.

Want to see more of the women working to conserve wildlife? Check out all of the profiles on Flickr!

Wednesday Wisdom – Margaret Mead

delmarva fox squirrel

Original image by the Delaware DNREC

This Delmarva fox squirrel was caught on a remotely triggered camera located in Delaware back in 2004 when this species was teetering on extinction.

Over forty years of concerted, “on-the-ground” conservation efforts by states, landowners and others working with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, including bands of “thoughtful, committed citizens,” contributed to the Delmarva fox squirrel’s leap off the Endangered Species list last year.

This major conservation success story highlights exactly what Margaret Mead spotlighted in her famous quote: that “just a few” can bring about change and make a major impact on the health of the “whole.”  Anthropologist, explorer, writer, and teacher Margaret Mead who worked for over fifty years at the American Museum of Natural History was acutely aware of the natural world’s impact on culture and the human experience.  We celebrate her insights this National Women’s History Month as her quote alone has lit many conservation “fires.”