Sarah Parker Pauley will become the first female Director in the Missouri Department of Conservation’s 79 year history. The Missouri Conservation Commission selected Pauley as the permanent director.

Sara Parker Pauley (Photo courtesy of Missouri Department of Natural Resources)

Sara Parker Pauley (Photo courtesy of Missouri Department of Natural Resources)

“As a lifelong conservationist, hunter, and outdoorswoman, Sara Parker Pauley appreciates and understands the value of Missouri’s fish, forest, and wildlife resources,” says Conservation Commission Chair Dave Murphy. “Sara has a breadth of experience and a proven track record of success to lead the Department.”

Since December 2010, Pauley has served as the Director of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. Pauley previously worked as a project manager for D.J. Case & Associates, a natural resources communications firm. She worked with federal and state agencies on policy development, marketing, and environmental compliance. From 2001 to 2005, Pauley served as the deputy director of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. She also served as chief of staff to former Missouri House Speaker Steve Gaw.

Pauley, a native of Columbia, has been an executive committee and board member of the Conservation Federation of Missouri. She was a member of the board of the American National Fish & Wildlife Museum, where she served as director of conservation programs. She has published a number of articles on wildlife and natural resources management.

“I look forward to this opportunity the Commission has entrusted me with,” Pauley says. “I began my career working for the Department and I look forward to working with the staff, dedicated volunteers, and committed partners to lead this agency into the future.”

Pauley replaces Robert Ziehmer, who resigned in July to work in the private sector. Tom Draper is serving as Interim Director. Pauley begins November 1.