The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission has chosen Curt Melcher as its choice to be the next director for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. The Commission’s decision was announced during the Commission’s regular meeting in Salem. Melcher has served as ODFW Interim Director since September 2014.
Commission Chair Mike Finley and Melcher will meet to discuss the terms of his employment later this month.
Melcher was among three finalists being considered for the position following a national search for candidates. The other finalists were Edward Bowles, Fish Division Administrator, ODFW; and Krystyna Wolniakowski, former Director, Western Partnership Office, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
“We are very pleased at the prospect of having Curt as the new director and are confident he is the right person to lead this premiere fish and wildlife agency,” said Mike Finley. Full press release here.
No governor since Tom McCall has done as much for Oregon fisheries. Vic Atiyeh and Barbara Roberts were good for fish, but not as passionately and persistently as the man who emotionally faced his state on the worst Friday the 13th of his life (and the day before Valentine’s/Oregon’s birthday).
What will these changes mean for Oregon’s wild fish? We’ll have to wait and see.