Georgia now has a die-hard hunter heading up the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). On Dec. 8, Mark Williams, of Jesup, took the helm of an agency that began almost a century ago, funded by sportsmen, to protect and enhance wildlife.
DNR’s days of being the Game & Fish Commission may be history, but to sportsmen it still seems like a no-brainer to have an outdoorsmen head DNR, and that is what we have with Mark Williams.
The former DNR Commissioner, Chris Clark, resigned to take a position with the Georgia Chamber of Commerce. Gov. Sonny Perdue, after discussions with Gov.-elect Nathan Deal, announced that Rep. Mark Williams was his choice to replace Clark. The DNR board approved the recommendation, and Williams became our latest commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources.
One only has to look at his Facebook page profile picture to see Williams enjoys hunting. The picture is of Williams with a huge buck.
Williams is a member of the NRA, the National Wild Turkey Federation, Ducks Unlimited and the Altamaha Wildlife Association. As a legislator, he developed a reputation as a fiscal conservative and as an advocate for budget transparency in state agencies. He has also been a strong advocate for south Georgia, particularly concerning water issues. The past legislative session, Williams served as secretary of the Game, Fish, and Parks Committee.
Williams, a former teacher, has a bachelors degree in biology from Georgia College and State University, and he is an Army National Guard veteran.
“I grew up hunting and fishing in south Georgia,” Williams said. “Hunting and fishing are a valued part of the cultural heritage of our state, and I am excited to take on the new role of commissioner of natural resources so that I can work with you to protect those traditions. Together, we can ensure that these outdoor opportunities are available for generations to come. I’d like to thank all of the sportsmen who support wildlife and wildlife conservation in Georgia. I look forward to continuing to work with you.”
As commissioner, Williams oversees an agency of more than 2,500 employees in multiple divisions who are responsible for management and protection of wildlife, habitat, historic sites and the environment, and for enforcement of game, fish and boating laws through it’s law-enforcement section.