Gary Clayton to Present Stellwagen Bank Researcher with Hemenway + Hall Wildlife Conservation Award During Annual Birders Meeting

Release Date:
February 20, 2019

LINCOLN, MA.—Dr. David Wiley, Research Coordinator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary and an expert on seabirds and endangered whales, has been named the 2019 recipient of Mass Audubon’s Hemenway + Hall Wildlife Conservation Award.

This honor recognizes and celebrates individuals or organizations whose research and related ecological successes have achieved significant and lasting wildlife conservation benefits. The award is named for Mass Audubon founders Harriet Hemenway and Minna Hall, who in 1896 organized a national campaign which succeeded in ending the commercial slaughter of bird species for the millinery trade while inspiring broader public support for wildlife conservation in general.

Dr. Wiley’s work focuses on Stellwagen Bank, the marine species-rich underwater plateau situated between the tip of Cape Cod and Cape Ann at the mouth of Massachusetts Bay. He studies humpback whales and North Atlantic right whales (the latter the most endangered in the world), shearwaters and other seabirds, as well as sand lances, small fish that sustain both the birds and the large marine mammals.

The award ceremony will take place during Mass Audubon’s 27th-annual Birders Meeting Sunday, March 3, at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester. Dr. Wiley will be presented with his award by Gary Clayton, President of Mass Audubon, the state’s largest nature conservation nonprofit.

“Dr. Wiley’s conservation work on behalf of Stellwagen Bank and its remarkable biodiversity, from seabirds to endangered whales, honors the legacy of Harriett and Minna,” Clayton said. “And thus he is a fitting recipient of the Hemenway + Hall Wildlife Conservation Award.

“Just as our founding mothers understood more than a century ago that all wildlife species warrant protection, Dave is committed is understanding and protecting our seas and the amazing and diverse life they support,” he noted.

Wiley grew up in Latham, NY, near Albany, and earned an undergraduate degree in natural resource management at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Studies and Conservation Biology from Antioch University, New England.

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Mass Audubon protects 36,500 acres of land throughout Massachusetts, saving birds and other wildlife, and making nature accessible to all. As Massachusetts’ largest nature conservation nonprofit, we welcome more than a half million visitors a year to our wildlife sanctuaries and 20 nature centers. From inspiring hilltop views to breathtaking coastal landscapes, serene woods, and working farms, we believe in protecting our state’s natural treasures for wildlife and for all people—a vision shared in 1896 by our founders, two extraordinary Boston women. Today, Mass Audubon is a nationally recognized environmental education leader, offering thousands of camp, school, and adult programs that get over 225,000 kids and adults outdoors every year. With more than 125,000 members and supporters, we advocate on Beacon Hill and beyond, and conduct conservation research to preserve the natural heritage of our beautiful state for today’s and future generations. We welcome you to explore a nearby sanctuary, find inspiration, and get involved. Learn how at massaudubon.org.