Dr. Richard (Rick) M. Kaminski
James C. Kennedy Endowed Chair Holder and Professor of Wildlife Ecology and Management in the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries & Aquaculture. Rick has mentored over 40 graduate students since joining the faculty of Mississippi State University (MSU) in 1983 after working four years as a research biologist for Ducks Unlimited-Canada and graduating from Michigan State University (M.S. and Ph.D., 1975 and 1979) and University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (B.S., 1972). Rick has taught courses at MSU on waterfowl ecology and management, wetlands ecology and management, wildlife techniques, wildlife management field practices, and professional communications. He and his students and colleagues have published widely on waterfowl and wetlands ecology and conservation, including a book and a Wildlife Monograph both of which received publication awards from The Wildlife Society (TWS). TWS also recognized Rick as a Fellow in 2007, and Ducks Unlimited awarded him a life-time conservation achievement award in 2006. He also was named by Outdoor Life magazine in 2008 to a group of 25 North Americans who have made significant contributions to hunting and wildlife conservation. In 1994, Rick was selected by the Mississippi Wildlife Federation as Wildlife Conservationist of the Year for his and Dr. Brian Gray’ s research and outreach on illegal waterfowl hunting in the Mississippi Flyway. In the 1990s, Rick served as associate editor for The Journal of Wildlife Management and Wildlife Society Bulletin, and he has been honored by MSU multiple times for his contributions to teaching, research, and service. He was instrumental in attracting philanthropic gifts for establishment of The James C. Kennedy Endowed Chair in Waterfowl and Wetlands Conservation, the James C. Kennedy Endowed Undergraduate/Graduate Student Scholarship, and the Scenic Homes’ Richard M. Kaminski’ Endowed Undergraduate Scholarship in Waterfowl and Wetlands. Rick relaxes by managing wetlands for waterfowl and other wildlife, assisting with wetlands conservation and education, hunting waterfowl, and supporting MSU athletics especially SEC football and basketball. He and his wife, Loretta, live in Starkville, MS and have two children (Shannon and Matt), a son-in-law, Neil, a daughter-in-law, Molly, and a grandson Tanner.
Dr. J. Brian Davis
Brian joined Mississippi State’s Department of Wildlife, Fisheries & Aquaculture in August 2009. Brian grew up in St. Louis, Missouri and began hunting ducks and Canada geese as a youth in northern Missouri. He graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a B.S. Degree in Wildlife Management in 1986. Brian gained wetland management experience during summers and immediately upon graduation with the Missouri Department of Conservation. From 1988-1994, Brian worked for the California Waterfowl Association on wintering and breeding duck research, a statewide wood duck nest box program, writing management plans for private duck clubs, and conducted other educational outreach. Brian attended Mississippi State University from 1994-2001, and earned M.S. (1998) and Ph.D. (2001) degrees studying breeding and brood rearing wood ducks and other aspects of wood duck ecology. After departing Mississippi State in 2001, Brian worked as a Regional Biologist for Ducks Unlimited in Little Rock, Arkansas, and more recently in Lafayette, Louisiana (January-July, 2009). Brian helped deliver various conservation programs that restored and protected bottomland hardwood forests and other wetlands. Brian also frequently spoke publicly on behalf of DU conservation programs and assisted private landowners with wetland management, wrote NAWCA proposals, and participated in major gift fundraising. Brian’s research interests are broad yet focused on waterfowl and wetland ecology and management in the Lower Mississippi Valley and elsewhere in North America. Brian has published a number of articles in The Journal of Wildlife Management, Wetlands, and other scientific outlets, as well as numerous popular articles based on his and other scientists’ research. Additionally, Brian has presented numerous invited and contributed papers at scientific and outreach venues, has helped garner several million dollars in research and conservation grants, and has played primary roles in organizing and conducting youth waterfowl hunting workshops for DU and MSU in the past. Brian will be responsible for teaching Waterfowl Ecology and Management, Wetlands Ecology and Management, and Wildlife Techniques and developing a productive research and service program in the department and in association with the James C. Kennedy Endowed Chair in Waterfowl and Wetlands Conservation.
Mississippi State University’s waterfowl and wetlands science program was recently honored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The North American Waterfowl Management Plan, a pro...