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NWTF Staff Graduates from Esteemed Leadership Program

The National Wild Turkey Federation’s (NWTF) Jared McJunkin and Doug Little recently graduated from the National Conservation Leadership Institute (NCLI). The NCLI is a rigorous nine-month developmental program designed for preparing extraordinary conservation leaders.

“In 2004, a research study prepared for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found that 77 percent of the senior leadership in the field of natural resource conservation was set to retire in the next decade. Our program began the following year,” said Gina Main, NCLI executive director.

Enrollment for the world-class leadership program is not an easy process. First, an individual must be identified by his/her organization as a candidate with “high potential” and nominated. Even then, there is a selection process for the annual class of 36 Fellows.

“It was very intense but one of the most rewarding things I have ever done professionally,” said Jared McJunkin, NWTF’s Great Plains District conservation field supervisor. “I learned a great deal about exercising leadership that will benefit my work with the NWTF, as well as my personal life and service in my local community.”

With their successful completion of the program, McJunkin and Little joined seven other NWTF employees as NCLI graduates.

Other NWTF Staff to become NCLI Fellows:

  • Mark Hatfield – Director of eastern conservation planning (also served as a peer coach)

  • Brandon Houck – Conservation area manager

  • Tom Hughes – Assistant vice president of conservation

  • Joel Pederson – Director of western conservation planning (also served as a peer coach)

  • Doug Saunders – Senior vice president of marketing

  • Scott Vance – Assistant vice president for conservation

  • Brian Zielinksi – Conservation area manager

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