Who is Sam D. Hamilton, namesake of the Refuge?
On September 1, 2009, Sam D. Hamilton was sworn in as the 15th Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the nation’s principal federal agency dedicated to the conservation of fish and wildlife and their habitats. Hamilton brought to the position more than 30 years of experience with the Service, beginning when he was 15-years-old and working as a Youth Conservation Corps member on the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge in Mississippi. Prior to his appointment as Director, he served as Regional Director of the agency’s Southeast Region in Atlanta, Ga.
Hamilton was a strong advocate for the National Wildlife Refuge System, comprised of 551 refuges and encompassing 150 million acres of protected habitat. Throughout his career, he supported the expansion of existing refuges and the addition of new refuges as an essential step in providing for America’s wildlife heritage.
Earlier in his career, Hamilton served as Assistant Regional Director of Ecological Services in Atlanta and as the Service’s Texas State Administrator in Austin. Hamilton graduated from Mississippi State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in biology in 1977.
Hamilton strongly believed no single entity, whether federal, state, or private, can ensure the sustainability of the nation’s fish and wildlife resources working independently. He worked toward building collaborative partnerships that allow for the development of ideas and solutions that are greater than any one entity can accomplish. (info from: FWS)