Former U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Official in Line for Chairwoman In 2021

(ARLINGTON, VA) July 27, 2020 — The Student Conservation Association (SCA), a national leader in youth service and stewardship, today announced its board of directors has unanimously elected Dr. Mamie Parker as vice chairwoman of the board. The vote positions Dr. Parker to ascend to the chairwomanship in 2021.

Dr. Parker’s distinguished career includes nearly three decades with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. A trailblazing biologist, she was the first African American in the Service to achieve the rank of regional director and eventually rose to the level of assistant director for the agency. Since retiring from the Service in 2007, Dr. Parker has remained active as an environmental consultant, executive coach, and nonprofit trustee.

“Mamie Parker is a true pioneer and an exceptional leader,” states SCA Board Chairwoman Kathy Bonavist. “Her passion for mentoring young people has touched many lives, particularly within underrepresented communities. The Career Discovery Internship Program, a joint SCA-Fish and Wildlife diversity initiative, began under Mamie’s leadership as northeast regional director, and I look forward to working with her in this new role to advance conservation service opportunities for young Americans nationwide.”

“I have dedicated my professional life to protecting our natural resources and helping others become their best selves,” Dr. Parker says. “I have seen first-hand the extraordinary impact of SCA volunteers on our refuges, and know that SCA experiences foster leadership and stewardship, qualities that are both timely and timeless. I am very excited by this opportunity.”

Dr. Parker has served on the SCA board since 2016 and currently sits on the Program and Development Committees. She is up for election as chairwoman in March, 2021.

About the Student Conservation Association

The Student Conservation Association (SCA) is America’s oldest and largest youth conservation organization. SCA conserves lands and transforms lives by empowering young people of all backgrounds to plan, act, and lead while they protect and restore our natural and cultural resources. Founded in 1957, SCA’s mission is to build the next generation of conservation leaders, and seven in 10 of alumni worldwide are employed or studying in conservation-related fields. For more, visit

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