Rebecca Humphries, director of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment, has accepted the position of Director of the Great Lakes/Atlantic Regional Office for Ducks Unlimited.

She will manage conservation delivery for the Great Lakes and Atlantic region of DU beginning January 2011.

“Becky brings 33 years of conservation experience to Ducks Unlimited,” said DU CEO Dale Hall. “Her dedication to natural resources has been expressed not only through her work with the state, but also as a leader on many of the conservation teams with which Ducks Unlimited partners. We're pleased to add her expertise and passion for wetlands to the DU family.”

Humphries will be responsible for managing conservation delivery in 18 states, on the Eastern Seaboard from New England to the Chesapeake, and throughout the Great Lakes to the Upper Mississippi region. The director is responsible for conservation planning and program delivery, and coordinates efforts between Ducks Unlimited staff and volunteers with private, state and federal agencies.

For the past 36 years, Humphries has held various positions within the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, and became director of the department in 2004. In 2010, the Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Environmental Quality were combined and became the Department of Natural Resources and Environment. Humphries was named to head the newly formed department and has been in that position since its inception.

“I have worked with Ducks Unlimited in many capacities during my tenure with the state of Michigan,” Humphries said. “The organization is very focused on habitat, and this opportunity is really one that doesn't come twice in a lifetime.”

Humphries is a graduate of Michigan State University, and holds an honorary Ph.D. in Public Service from Central Michigan University. She has been honored with numerous professional awards and has served as vice president of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, Chair of the Great Lakes Fishery Trust and Chair of the Mississippi Flyway Council.

The Great Lakes and Atlantic region includes several high-level conservation priorities for Ducks Unlimited representing diverse varieties of wetlands and associated habitats. The Great Lakes serve as an important breeding ground for waterfowl and a significant migration area for many species of waterfowl and migratory songbirds. It is estimated that 3 million ducks migrate through the region each year. The mid-Atlantic coast is a major resource for wintering waterfowl, especially black ducks, Atlantic brant and both snow and Canada geese.