Thursday, September 10, 2015

Maryland Gets a New Fish Guy

Maryland Department of Natural Resources Announces New Fisheries Director
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced the appointment of David Blazer as the new director of fisheries. In this capacity, Blazer will manage the state’s fisheries by keeping balance with the ecosystem, while providing high quality, diverse and accessible fishing opportunities.

“The common thread throughout his career is his demonstrated ability to bring a range of diverse stakeholders together for a common goal,” DNR Secretary Mark Belton said. “His environmental, management and policy experience – and firsthand knowledge of the department – will serve the state and its natural resources well.”

This marks a return for Blazer, who started his natural resources career with DNR as a sport fishing specialist, where he established, coordinated and managed educational and promotional programs. He was later promoted to legislation and regulation program chief and oversaw programs related to fin and sport fish in Maryland. He served DNR from 1990-1998.

A graduate of Towson University, Blazer brings over three decades of Maryland-focused environmental and natural resource experience. He has held numerous leadership roles with the Chesapeake Bay Commission, Maryland Coastal Bays Program, and most recently, the Maryland Port Administration, where he served as the deputy director for harbor development and oversaw the dredge spoils program.

Blazer’s first day will be Monday, September 21, 2015. He will report to Assistant Secretary for Aquatic Resources David Goshorn.
When the previous fish guy,Tom O'Connell, who was well liked by the fishing and environmentalists (and not so popular with commercial fishermen) got "let go" by the new Hogan administration, there was a lot of speculation, particularly in the environmental community, over who would be appointed and whether or not he would would be rabidly pro-commercial. Although I'm not familiar with this new guy (and that's probably a good thing), it looks like a reasonably innocuous choice. We'll see.

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