Skip to main content

Meet Our Wildlife Staff

Wildlife Office Coordinator – Computer Systems

Victoria Arterberry is an Office Coordinator specializing in computer systems at the Springfield office where she is responsible for the Division of Wildlife Resource’s webpages, Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator testing, renewals, and reporting, fur buyer reporting, petty cash account administrating as well as designing and digitizing publications and forms for the division. She also participates in various roles in Conservation World during the Illinois State Fair and assists the biologists with goose banding, CWD management, updating the hunting and trapping digest, and other various duties. She previously worked in the licensing section of the Office of Strategic Services where she provided technical support via phone and email to vendors and constituents regarding hunting and fishing licenses and permits. She studied web design at Benedictine University and later obtained a degree in Microcomputer Applications & Systems. Victoria is from Edinburg, IL, and outside of work enjoys traveling, fishing, camping, hunting and spending time with friends and family. To contact Victoria click here.

Geographic Information Specialist II

Chad Bartman is a Geographic Information Specialist II where he develops data collecting applications and maintains geographic datasets, including aerial deer surveys, CWD bait sites, hunter fact sheet maps, and on the rare occasion he manages to venture out into the field. He holds a Master of Arts in Geography from the University of Georgia, a bachelor’s in science in Biology from Illinois State University, among other distinctions in the field. Currently, he is responsible for managing, updating, and analyzing the Division's geographic information systems. Chad is a Senior Chief Petty Officer in the United States Navy and currently works as the Operations Chief for Naval Mobile Construction Battalion TWO FIVE, as a result he has little to no time for any hobbies. He resides in Danvers, Illinois, with his wife Kristie and son Clayton. To contact Chad, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Doug Brown is a District Wildlife Biologist for District 17 in Region 3. Doug’s office is located in Charleston, Illinois. He works with various Public Land Sites encompassed in his district.  These duties include habitat management as well as administering various hunting programs for various public lands including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Lake Shelbyville Project in Shelby County, Eagle Creek State Park, Wolf Creek State Park, Hidden Springs State Forest, Lincoln Trail State Park, Weldon Springs State Park, Clinton Lake State Recreation Area and its satellites Birkbeck Pheasant Habitat Area, Finfrock Pheasant Habitat Area and Hallsville Pheasant Habitat Area. Doug is responsible for nuisance wildlife calls, wildlife disease investigations, migratory bird banding, wildlife census routes and other wildlife management concerns. Doug has 29 years of experience with IDNR and the former IDOC.  He had previously gained resource management experience working for the US-Army Corps of Engineers, US-Fish and Wildlife Service, US-Department of Agriculture, Illinois Natural History Survey, Southern Illinois University Wildlife Research Laboratory and the University of Wisconsin Wildlife Research Unit. Doug and his family are involved in hunting, fishing, primitive camping, biking and hiking.  He is from rural Trilla, Illinois. To contact Doug, click  here.

District Wildlife Biologist

John Bunnell is a District Wildlife Biologist in South-East Illinois working with public and private landowners on wildlife resource management.  A big portion of John’s job is assisting landowners with nuisance wildlife such as raccoons, foxes, coyotes and squirrels.  John also spends a great deal of time assisting farmers with crop depredation from white-tailed deer and Canada Geese.  The remainder of his time is spent developing and enhancing habitat on the 9 public sites in his district which cover over 18,000 acres.  He is also the contact for public reporting of disease and sick animals in his district and participates in Chronic Waste Disease Management in Northern Illinois for 6 weeks in the winter. John, with the assistance of other IDNR resource biologists has been instrumental in removing exotic/invasive species from the public sites in his district.  He also enjoys working with Land Managers to improve the public hunting and trapping opportunities within his district. John’s hobbies include crappie fishing and watching his three children play high school and college sports.  John is from Salem, Illinois. John obtained his B.A. in Zoology from SIU-Carbondale, M.A. in Environmental Biology from Sangamon State University in Springfield, Illinois. John Worked for IDNR in Land Management at Carlyle Lake for 20 years before transferring to Office of Resource Conservation Division of Wildlife. To contact John, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

​Megan Dassow is a District Wildlife Biologist based out of Gibson City. Megan assists with habitat development and improvement on state sites to provide hunters and outdoor enthusiasts with enhanced recreational opportunities. She also conducts wildlife surveys, wildlife disease investigations, participates in statewide migratory bird banding efforts, and assists the public with wildlife and hunting related inquires. Megan has over 15 years of field experience in wildlife management gained through a variety of work experiences across the United States and Canada. She obtained her B.S. in Zoology with a focus in Wildlife Management from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. Megan enjoys spending her free-time, outdoors with her husband and their son. In the fall they can be found waterfowl or upland bird hunting on the family farm with their black labs. To contact Megan, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Kenneth Delahunt is a District Wildlife Biologist in southern Illinois. Before joining the Wildlife Division, Kenneth worked as a Wildlife Biologist for the United States Department of Agriculture. Kenneth is a Certified Wildlife Biologist by The Wildlife Society and received his B.S. and M.S. in Zoology from Southern Illinois University Carbondale- Cooperative Wildlife Research Laboratory. Kenneth spends most of his time improving wildlife habitat, conducting wildlife surveys, coordinating sites hunting programs, overseeing site Ag leases, managing non-native species, and assisting the public with hunting and nuisance wildlife inquires. At work Kenneth likes spending time banding waterfowl, promoting waterfowl habitat projects, managing wetlands, and conducting prescribed burns. Kenneth enjoys spending time in the outdoors with his wife and children, and is originally from Carlyle, IL. To contact Kenneth, click here.​

Regional Wildlife Biologist

Roy Domazlicky is a Regional Wildlife Biologist based in the Region 2 office in Bartlett where he supervises District Wildlife Biologists in the northern half of Illinois. While specializing in birds, especially waterfowl, Roy coordinates with and assists DWB’s in managing all wildlife populations and habitats. He performs administrative duties such as setting management goals, purchasing, budgeting, coordinating rule making, conducting evaluations, and other day-to-day management tasks.  He also participates in wildlife field activities including aerial waterfowl surveys, upland bird surveys, furbearer surveys, disease monitoring, and banding programs.  He also routinely responds to public concerns, questions, and nuisance animal complaints. Roy has a Bachelor of Science degree in Wildlife Management and a Master of Science degree in Environmental Science and has served IDNR for 18 years. Originally from Berwyn, Illinois, Roy is married with one child and is a hunter, fisherman, and triathlete. To contact Roy, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Bryan Eubanks has been a District Wildlife Biologist in Charleston since 2011, where he enjoys coming to work every day.  Bryan focuses on improving habitat conditions for waterfowl, upland wildlife, and forest game species.  Additionally, he is responsible for implementing hunting programs at state sites, conducting wildlife surveys, monitoring wildlife diseases, resolving human/wildlife conflict, and is a member of the IDNR Wildland Firefighter Crew. Bryan received his B.S. and M.S. in Zoology from Southern Illinois University.  He was recognized as Wildlife Professional of the Year by Illinois Pheasants Forever and works diligently to provide quality hunting opportunities for Illinois sportsmen and women. Bryan is a hunter, fisherman, husband and proud father of two beautiful daughters and one son from Neoga, IL. To contact Bryan, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Stefanie Fitzsimons is a District Wildlife Biologist where she coordinates the local State Park hunting programs, conducts wildlife surveys and habitat management, assists the public with wildlife issues and questions, leads the Chronic Wasting Disease Management laboratory and sharpshooting effort for the area, and is a Squad Boss for the IDNR Wildland Firefighter Crew. Stefanie has assisted in creating new hunting programs at Illinois Beach State Park and Moraine Hills State Park. Stefanie is continuously towards better youth hunting opportunities and new programs for the hunting population of the Chicagoland area. Stefanie is an avid outdoor sportswoman, runner, and bagpiper from McHenry, Illinois. To contact Stefanie, click here.  

Habitat Team Technician

Mat Foster is an Natural Resource Technician II with the Habitat Team out of Gibson City. Mat is responsible for assisting in seeding and maintaining habitat areas in a 7+ county area in East Central Illinois. He is also responsible for helping to maintain all equipment for the team. His jobs include air flow seeding of native grasses and forbs in the winter, doing prescribed burns in the spring and summer, spraying and mowing plots in preparation for new seeding, spring and fall conservation seeding of plots with native grasses and forbs, as well as seeding firebreaks with cool season grasses and legumes. His experience with 30 years of farming as well as 15+ years with IDOT leave him more than capable of these accomplishments. His years on the line with PBL in football help give him the drive to accomplish. In his spare time, Mat likes to garden and spend time with his family. To contact Mat, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Greg Fretueg is a District Wildlife Biologist based out of Havana, IL where his primary focus is wetland and waterfowl management along the Illinois River. Most of Greg’s time is spent managing wildlife habitat, conducting wildlife surveys, and banding Canada geese, mourning doves, and wood ducks. Greg coordinates various habitat management projects including prescribed burns, invasive species control, and timber stand improvement. Greg enjoys watching sports and is from Rushville, IL. To contact Greg, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Ben Funk is a District Wildlife biologist where he is responsible for implementing the states evolving hunter heritage program with a goal or recruiting new hunters/trappers and keeping current hunter/trappers in the sport. Ben is a native of Jersey County. Ben served in the US Army as an infantryman in the 101st Airborne, completing 2 tours in Iraq. Ben received a BS in Zoology from SIU-C in 2011 and while there assisted several graduate student projects in Southern Illinois including wild turkeys, swamp rabbits and bats.  Ben worked the summer of 2011 in Wyoming studying nesting success of sage grouse.  After graduating, Ben worked as a Wildlife Technician with USDA Wildlife Services. In September 2017, Ben began working as the Natural Resource Coordinator for the Wildlife Disease and Invasive Species program. Ben has been married to his wife Becky since 2010 and they have 2 girls, Olivia and Alaina. Ben enjoys hunting, particularly predators, turkeys and groundhogs. To contact Ben, click here.

Wildlife Resources Outreach Specialist

Kaleigh Gabriel is a Wildlife Outreach Specialist from National Great Rivers Research and Education Center (NGRREC) on contract with IDNR's Springfield office. Kaleigh is involved with many of the online presences regarding Illinois wildlife such as Hunt Illinois, Wildlife Illinois and CICAIDA, assists with publishing the annual Illinois Digest of Hunting and Trapping, and writes for the Outdoor Illinois Journal. Kaleigh also manages the Illinois Windshield Card system. She graduated from Manchester University (North Manchester, IN) with a B.S. in Professional Writing/Editing in 2021 and has worked for a variety of publications. Raised on a small farm just outside of Rochester, IL, Kaleigh's childhood was filled with many experiences hunting, fishing, trapping, and camping. Outside of work, Kaleigh enjoys spending her free time with her family and friends.To contact Kaleigh, click here.

Wild Turkey Project Manager

Luke Garver is the Wild Turkey Project Manager at IDNR, where he compiles and analyzes information regarding wild turkey harvest, reproduction, and habitat management. Luke is also the campaign lead for the Forest and Woodland Campaign of the Illinois Wildlife Action Plan. In this role he helps coordinate with land managers and researchers on the maintenance and enhancement of Illinois’ forested habitats and the species that rely on them.Luke has a BS from the University of Illinois and an MS from Texas A&M University – Kingsville. He strives to use his prior experience in private land stewardship and natural resource conservation to contribute to the management of wildlife resources in Illinois. Luke is from Jacksonville, IL and tries to find time for all outdoor pursuits with his family. He enjoys hunting a variety of game, particularly deer, turkey, waterfowl, doves and grouse. To contact Luke, click here.

 Wildlife Programs Section Manager

Nate Grider serves as the senior manager for the Wildlife Programs Section in the Springfield office. The Programs Section includes our subject matter experts for forest, wetland, and upland wildlife, hunter heritage, disease/invasive species and wildlife diversity. The Programs Section works to manage populations and guide hunting regulations and policy. Nate’s work with IDNR started after graduating high school by volunteering on lake, pond, and stream surveys in Region 4. He went on to earn his B.S. in Biology with a minor in Environmental Science from the University of Illinois, Springfield (UIS). He also earned his M.S. in Biology at UIS and studied diets, growth rates, and body conditions of a reintroduced population of Alligator Gar for his thesis in coordination with IDNR. During his studies he served as an intern at the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, National Great Rivers Research and Education Center, and served as a Graduate Public Service Intern at IDNR. Nate’s employment at IDNR started in 2011 where he has since gained diverse experience in land reclamation at mine sites, aquatic and terrestrial species management and research, and habitat management. He previously served as the manager of the Impact Assessment Section overseeing the Department’s internal and external environmental impact reviews of construction and development projects on state and federally listed species, state protected lands, wetlands, non-game and game species, and public outdoor recreation in coordination with local, state, and federal agencies. Nate’s passion for the outdoors and conservation started with romping around the woods and waterbodies of Montgomery County where he was raised. He enjoys hunting, fishing, camping with family, and conducting wildlife habitat improvement projects on the family farm in Montgomery County in his free time. He lives in Springfield with his wife Natalie, and two daughters, Hadley and Caroline. To contact Nate, click here

W-76-D Project Manager

Mitch Hess is a Natural Resource Advanced Specialist where he manages the W-76-D grant which is a federal grant used to improve wildlife habitat on state properties. Mitch is an outdoor enthusiast and hunter/trapper. Mitch grew up on a farm in west central Indiana. He attended Purdue University and received his B.S. in Wildlife Science. While attending Purdue, he worked for Purdue’s Dept. of Forestry and Natural Resources. There he did a lot of forestry and silviculture practices as well as worked for a PhD student doing research on prairie and savanna restoration. After graduation, he took a job with Pheasants Forever as a Farm Bill Wildlife Biologist in Ohio. After working there, he obtained a job with Indiana’s DNR Division of Fish and Wildlife as the Assistant Property Manager of a state fish and wildlife area. From there he moved to New Hampshire to work for NRCS while his wife worked on her PhD at MIT. Once she graduated, they moved to Illinois and he continued to work for NRCS. He then took a job with the Illinois Natural History Survey as the Assistant Ag Habitat Program Manager. He conducted research on migratory shorebirds that come through Illinois, with a focus on the American Golden Plover. He also worked with private landowners and farms to create habitat in agriculture fields for shorebirds during their stopover in Illinois before assuming his current position. To contact Mitch, click here.

Wetland Wildlife Project Manager

Dan Holm is a Project Manager in the Wetland Wildlife Program where he helps coordinate several of the Division’s migratory game bird population monitoring efforts, including banding and aerial waterfowl surveys. Dan serves on the Mississippi Flyway Game Bird Technical Section and the Upper Mississippi River and Upper Great Lakes Region Joint Venture Technical Section. Dan is responsible for analyzing migratory game bird population data and assists with developing waterfowl hunting season recommendations. Dan works at a field office near the Illinois River in Havana. To contact Dan, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist
Jeff Horn is a district wildlife biologist stationed in Savanna, IL. The main projects in that part of the state are chronic wasting disease management in deer, forest and prairie management, and wildlife surveys. Jeff has a Master of Science from the University of Illinois and is an IL prescribed fire burn boss. His job duties include coordinating wildlife habitat projects on public and private land, conducting prescribed burns to improve and manage habitat, conducting wildlife surveys, overseeing hunting on department owned land in the four-county district, and being a team leader for the chronic wasting disease management team in Northwest IL. Jeff enjoys hunting, baseball, golf, hockey, and spending time with his family. They reside in Freeport, IL. To contact Jeff, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist 

Maureen Hurd is a District Wildlife Biologist based out of Victoria, IL where she is responsible for coordinating habitat management at state parks, habitat areas, and fish and wildlife areas. She also manages hunting programs, conducts wildlife surveys, handles nuisance wildlife issues, and assists with Chronic Wasting Disease management. Maureen received a B.S. in Biology from Grand Valley State University of Allendale, Michigan and her M.S. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Before accepting this position, she worked as a Natural Heritage Resident with IDNR. She is originally from Hudsonville, Michigan and enjoys hiking, biking, kayaking, water-skiing and wakeboarding. To contact Maureen, click here. 

Wildlife Disease and Invasive Species Program Manager

Chris Jacques is a Program Manager for the Wildlife Disease and Invasive Species at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.  This program includes coordinating wildlife diseases (particularly CWD management and monitoring EHD outbreaks) and all activities related to feral swine and large carnivores for the Wildlife Division.  Chris earned Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in wildlife and fisheries sciences from South Dakota State University, and a B.S. in wildlife ecology from the University of Maine.  Chris was previously an Associate Professor of Wildlife Ecology at Western Illinois University (2012-2021), and Natural Resources Research Scientist for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (2007-2012).  He has published numerous scientific papers on a range of wildlife taxa, and extensively on infectious diseases of cervids.  Chris is a Wildlife Biologist certified by The Wildlife Society, was the President of the Illinois Chapter of The Wildlife Society, is currently a member of the IDNR Endangered Species Technical Advisory Committee for mammals, and has held past or ongoing editorial appointments for the Prairie Naturalist, Journal of Wildlife Management, Wildlife Society Bulletin, and the Journal of Mammalogy.  Chris grew up in Thomaston, Maine, and spent most of his time hunting, fishing, and trapping his family property and neighboring coastal wetlands.  He is married to Tara Jacques and they have an 18-year old son, Matthew, and a 15-year old daughter, Kylie.  Chris enjoys most any outdoor activity, but has a special love for archery hunting deer.  When not pursuing deer, Chris enjoys running, playing pickle ball with Matthew, and supporting Kylie's dance obsession. To contact Chris, click here. 

Wildlife Office Associate

Becky Jones is an Office Associate at the Charleston District Office where she helps out the biologists with paperwork for day to day operations. Becky also assists Forestry, Fisheries, and Natural Heritage Biologists that are located in the Charleston District Office. She assists with voucher processing and petty cash for Wildlife, Forestry, Fisheries, and Natural Heritage Biologists. Watercraft registration applications are a constant inquiry at the Charleston District Office, where she helps complete the applications, and tries to solve title problems, for the general public. She also does the hunter fact sheet updates for Region 2 and Region 3 sites. Becky resides in Charleston with her husband, and enjoys time with her family, and with friends near and far. To contact Becky, click here.

Field Operations Section Head

Don Kahl is the Field Operations Section Head for the Division of Wildlife Resources. Field Operations delivers the priorities and programs of the Division. Don and the Regional Wildlife Biologists work to set priorities, provide direction, and seek the help and materials that our talented field staff need to get their work done efficiently and professionally. Don has a bachelor's degree in Environmental Biology from Blackburn College and a master's degree in Range and Wildlife Management from Texas A&M University-Kingsville.  Prior to joining IDNR in February 2021, Don worked as a Farm Bill Biologist in Southeast Colorado for Pheasants Forever.  He also worked as a District Wildlife Biologist and a Regional Migratory Game Bird Specialist in West Texas for Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD).  While working for TPWD, Don led the development and administration of the Texas Playa Conservation Initiative, a regional-scale, multi-agency conservation program focused on the restoration of playa wetlands on private lands.  After 15 years away, he's excited to have returned to his home state of Illinois, applying his experience and contributing to the mission of the Division of Wildlife Resources. Don, his wife Samantha, and his sons Rowan and Wesley, live in Carlinville, IL. Don enjoys spending his time hunting and fishing, while also camping with his family.  His goal is to purchase a piece of property where he and his family can enjoy their weekends in the field, while also working to manage wildlife habitat and populations. To contact Don, click here. 

District Wildlife Biologist
Tim Kelley is a District Wildlife Biologist based out of the Havana Field Office.  His duties include developing and implementing wildlife and habitat management plans for State and private properties. Tim has a solid background in trapping and native habitat restoration, among other distinctions in the field.  He also possesses a long history of assisting the Agency in its outreach programs related to the Illinois State Fair. Tim likes to turkey and deer hunt.  He enjoys trapping and a lot of other types of hunting (pheasant, waterfowl, dove, etc.), too, but his three children and their too-numerous-to-mention activities leave little time for his own pursuits…and he’s pretty darn OK with that!  He also likes to attend sporting events and concerts and enjoys travelling, hiking, biking, and a host of other activities that he can do with his family. To contact Tim, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Sam Klimas is a District Wildlife Biologist based out of Lacon, IL where he is responsible for coordinating wetland and waterfowl management at the many state fish and wildlife areas along the Peoria Pool of the Illinois River. He also conducts wildlife surveys, bands migratory birds, and works with the public to mitigate nuisance wildlife issues within his district. He received a B.S. in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and his M.S. in Biology from Western Illinois University. Prior to coming to the DNR, Sam gained valuable experience researching waterfowl and wetlands of the Illinois River with the Illinois Natural History Survey at Forbes Biological Station in Havana. Sam is from Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota and enjoys hunting, fishing, and watching hockey games with family and friends. To contact Sam, click here. 

District Wildlife Biologist

Cody Langan is a District Wildlife Biologist at the Mt. Vernon Game farm office. Most of Cody’s time is spent conducting wildlife surveys, nuisance wildlife inquires, and managing habitat. Cody coordinates habitat management projects including prescribed fire, invasive species removal, and prairie plantings. Cody has worked for the Nature Conservancy, Missouri Department of Conservation, and Macon County Conservation District. Cody received his BS and MS in Zoology from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL. He is an avid outdoorsman and in his free time enjoys hunting, fishing and is from Shelbyville, IL. To contact Cody, click here

District Wildlife Biologist

Emma Launer is a District Wildlife Biologist based out of Coffeen, IL where she works with site staff at state sites including state parks, wildlife management areas and state fish and wildlife areas to manage habitat and wildlife to provide opportunities for public lands hunting and recreation. She also conducts wildlife surveys, assists with chronic wasting disease management, and works with the public to mitigate nuisance wildlife issues in her district. Emma attended Western Illinois University for both her B.S. and M.S. in Biology with a wildlife emphasis. Originally from Beardstown, IL, she enjoys traveling, hunting, kayaking, and gardening in her spare time. To contact Emma, click here.

Habitat Team Program Manager

Wade Louis is the Habitat Team Program Manager. The Habitat Team is responsible for grassland management on state owned Pheasant Habitat Area’s in east-central Illinois. The Habitat Team prescribes management treatments designed to enhance and promote grassland dependent species and provide recreational opportunities for upland hunting. Wade enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing and finding creative ways to incorporate both activities together. Wade spends most of his off time with his wife following their three children to sporting and school events. To contact Wade, click here.

Forest Wildlife Biometrician
Patrick McDonald is a wildlife biometrician in the Forest Wildlife Program. Patrick manages the statewide database for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), leads the current osprey recovery project, and is the project leader of the W-99-R Statewide Wildlife Surveys, Planning, Investigations and Program Development grant. CWD management is one of the Division’s top priorities. Patrick is responsible for managing, updating and analyzing the Division’s CWD database so our managers and biologists can take appropriate actions to best manage the disease. In addition, Patrick established the first translocation effort for ospreys in Illinois to help recover this state-listed endangered species. Patrick, originally from St. Louis, Missouri, is an avid bicyclist, and enjoys playing recreational hockey, camping, hiking and fishing. To contact Pat, click here.

Wildlife Office Coordinator ​

Dan McGuire is an Office Coordinator for the IDNR Division of Wildlife who focuses on BidBuy purchasing for the field staff, serves as a timekeeper, an administrator of a petty cash fund and performs various other duties as the need arises. Dan started in the work force doing long distance telecom for a company that provided long distance service for local exchange carriers to resell to their subscribers. Prior to joining the Wildlife Department, he worked at IDNR in the Land Reclamation Division who is responsible for permitting all coal mining operations in the state of Illinois and ensuring that lands affected by mining are returned to productive uses. Dan has a bachelor’s degree in International Studies with an emphasis in German and Business Administration. Dan is a sports fan and music enthusiast who enjoys watching movies from the golden age of Hollywood and comedies. He is from New Berlin, Illinois. To contact Dan, click here.

Wildlife Diversity Program Manager

Stan McTaggart is the new Program Manager for the Wildlife Diversity Program at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. This program includes oversight of furbearer hunting and trapping regulations, furbearer research and population monitoring, nuisance wildlife regulations and threatened and endangered species recovery for the Wildlife Division. Stan received a B.S. in Zoology from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and a M.S. in Biological Sciences from Eastern Illinois University. His thesis focused on colony composition and demographics of beaver colonies in Illinois. Over his career he has worked with threatened and endangered species, managed state and federal public lands, provided technical guidance to private landowners for habitat management and natural community restoration, monitored wildlife populations and participated in disease surveillance and management for chronic wasting disease and managed the Agriculture and Grassland Wildlife Program. Stan grew up on a small farm in central Illinois and enjoys introducing others to the outdoors. Most of his free time is spent bow hunting, fishing, chasing waterfowl, upland game, wild turkey and trying to get his 2 children involved in these activities. His trapping experience has primarily focused on beaver and removing nuisance animals, but he has plans to give coyote trapping a try. To contact Stan, click here.

Wildlife Graduate Public Service Intern (GPSI)

Hyler Pence is a Wildlife Graduate Public Service Intern (GPSI) where he assists with many different Wildlife Division projects and activities. Hyler has a Biology undergraduate degree from University of Illinois Springfield and leads project implementation and planning with the UIS Green Fee Committee, among other distinctions in the field. He is currently working towards his M.S. in Environmental Studies at University of Illinois Springfield with an interest in sustainable development. Hyler is responsible for helping update and managing the various DNR Wildlife websites and other projects as assigned. In his free time Hyler enjoys working at the Otter Lake Bait Shop, kayaking and spending time with his boyfriend and their 5 pets. 

District Wildlife Biologist

Adam Phillips is a District Wildlife Biologist in southern Illinois.  Adam coordinates wildlife management at state sites including state parks, wildlife management areas and state fish and wildlife areas.  Adam’s primary duties include coordinating wildlife habitat management projects on public and private lands, executing wildlife population surveys, and managing hunting programs on public lands in his district.  Adam is a sports enthusiast, as well as an outdoorsman and is originally from Jacksonville, IL. To contact Adam, click here.

Urban Deer Project Manager

Tim Preuss is the Urban Deer Project Manager assisting private landowners, homeowner’s associations, municipalities, forest preserve districts, and other land management organizations experiencing issues with white-tailed deer in urban environments. IDNR’s role in urban deer management is that of an extension service to assist public and private landowners that are interested in alternatives for managing urban white-tailed deer and abating deer-related damage. Tim strives to facilitate the needs of landowners and work cooperatively with them in addressing their deer management needs by providing up-to-date information on deer biology, ecology, and deer management alternatives, and providing professional assistance in designing, implementing, and evaluating site-specific, long-term deer management programs. Tim is a Certified Wildlife Biologist by The Wildlife Society. He has a B.S. in wildlife management from Purdue University, an M.S. in conservation biology from Central Michigan University, and worked for various organizations (including Purdue University, Max McGraw Wildlife Foundation, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Lake County Forest Preserve District, and U.S. Department of Agriculture) before coming to IDNR in 2017. Tim has been working in the field of wildlife management since 1999 and has worked on urban deer management issues since 2007. Tim resides in northeast Illinois and enjoys spending time with his family, as well as hiking, canoeing, camping, fishing, shooting sports, and reading. To contact Tim, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist
Joe Rogus is a District Wildlife Biologist based at the Des Plaines Game Propagation Center in Wilmington Illinois. Joe is responsible for Coordinating wildlife management on state parks, fish & wildlife areas and private land within his district.  He conducts wildlife surveys, assists the public with wildlife issues, administers Ag leases, manages hunting/trapping programs and assists with the Chronic Wasting Disease program. Joe enjoys horseback riding, snowmobiling, boating, skiing, camping and travel.  Joe is married to his wife Amy and lives in Minooka, IL. To contact Joe, click here.

Wildlife Executive Secretary II
Nicole Sandidge is the Executive Secretary II for the Division of Wildlife and assistant to the Chief of Wildlife in the Springfield office.  One of her main duties is creating and tracking the budget for the Division of Wildlife. She is responsible for preparing and editing purchase requests, contracts, and other procurement documents, entering procurement documents into Bidbuy for bidding and purchasing, processing all wildlife invoices, ordering supplies for the division, and serves as timekeeper for several wildlife division employees.  Nicole has been with the State of Illinois for 18 years and with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources since 2014. While with IDNR, she has worked for the Licensing Section in the Office of Strategic Services and Consultation Services in the Office of Realty and Capital Planning.
Nicole resides in Athens, IL with her husband Richard and 3 daughters.  In her free time, she enjoys boating, camping, spending time with friends & family, and watching her daughters who are active in several sports. To contact Nicole, click here​

Deer Project Manager

Peter Schlichting is the Deer Project Manager at IDNR, where he compiles, analyzes, and presents information regarding white-tailed deer management in Illinois. Peter was born and raised in Springfield, IL and attended the University of Illinois. He subsequently received his masters at Stony Brook University in Anthropology and a PhD at Texas Tech University in Wildlife Biology. He started his field work as a technician with the Illinois Natural History Survey and has worked across the US and internationally in Costa Rica, Madagascar, and Belarus. He has published numerous scientific papers on a range of wildlife, including wild pigs, large carnivores, and amphibians. He enjoys the great outdoors (fishing, hunting, hiking), playing tennis and volleyball, and traveling.   

Forest Wildlife Program Manager

Dan Skinner is the Forest Wildlife Program Manager in Springfield, where he plans, develops and evaluates activities within the Forest Wildlife Program, including overseeing management and hunting of white-tailed deer, wild turkeys, and squirrels.  He is also responsible for Chronic Wasting Disease management and coordinating research on forest wildlife species.  Dan has a B.S. in fish and wildlife conservation from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Before joining IDNR in 2019, Dan worked as a Colorado Wildlife Officer for Colorado Parks and Wildlife and later as a Wildlife Disease Biologist for the United States Department of Agriculture.  Dan seeks to protect and enhance the wildlife resources of the state of Illinois, drawing from his prior experience managing diverse wildlife populations on public and private land.  Dan grew up on a corn and soybean farm in rural Sangamon County and currently lives with his wife and son in Springfield.  Outside of work, Dan enjoys traveling with his family, hunting deer, doves, and squirrels, cheering for the St. Louis Cardinals, and working in his vegetable garden. To contact Dan, click here.

Associate Wildlife Biologist

Paul Skoglund is an Associate Wildlife Biologist based out of the Olney District Office. He works closely with District Wildlife Biologists to manage wildlife resources throughout Region 5 in Southern Illinois. Paul primarily works to create and improve habitat for game species on public lands. This is accomplished through planting, prescribed burning, and the removal of exotic/invasive species. He also helps landowners mitigate issues with nuisance wildlife and crop depredation through a variety of methods. Lastly, he assists with taking and investigating reports regarding sick or diseased animals. In his free time, Paul is an avid trapper and fisherman. He also enjoys hiking/backpacking and camping with his dog Dakota whenever possible. Paul is originally from Calumet City, Illinois. B.S. in Zoology concentrated in Wildlife Biology from SIU-Carbondale. Before joining the Office of Resource Conservation, Paul worked as a nuisance wildlife biologist in Neenah, Wisconsin and a biologist in Denver, Colorado. To contact Paul, click here.

Wildlife Office Coordinator

Kelly Smith is an Office Coordinator at the Gibson City office. She’s responsible for the typical day to day operations and keeping the office organized and running smoothly. She also helps with voucher payments, petty cash, and assists with purchase requests for the W-76-D Program. Kelly has an associate's degree in Medical Assisting and has previously worked as a home care CNA. She decided to go back to doing office work in which she has over 18 years of experience working in the clerical field. She has previously worked as a temporary Office Associate for Department of Public Health (Champaign), the Guardianship & Advocacy Commission (Champaign), and the Department of Children & Family Services (Urbana). She recently transferred from the Moraine View State Recreation Area in Leroy where she worked as an Office Coordinator. Kelly has one daughter named Gabby and a shih-tzu named Zoey. She enjoys spending time with friends and family, going on road trips/mini-vacations, reading, watching tv/movies, cooking and making crafts. 

District Wildlife/Hunter Heritage Biologist

Nicky Strahl is a Wildlife Biologist and a Hunter Heritage Biologist for Northern Illinois. Nicky assists the wildlife and other teams by conducting ground goose and waterfowl surveys, CWD surveillance and management, conducting grassland bird counts, harvest records for games species on managed lands, implements drawings for hunting opportunities on managed lands, conducts roadkill surveys, conducts spotlight route surveys, prescribed burns, endangered and threatened species surveys, waterfowl banding operations, upland bird banding operations, hunter fact sheet revisions/upload, refreshing of living with wildlife website, state fair wildlife/heritage tent logistics, deer check station, education of public in hunting heritage, R3, and general urban wildlife information dispersal, and assisting the public with nuisance wildlife issues. Also, Nicky helps the Learn to Hunt team when and where possible to assist other hunters, especially after their program completes, she helps get them into the lottery system and walks the public lands with them to help familiarize themselves with how public land hunts realistically function. She also is a certified hunter safety instructor. In her past, Nicky has been an ecologist and project manager for various private sector teams in the northwest suburbs of Chicago for the past 10 years. Her professional experience includes ecological consulting, ecosystem restoration (including planning, monitoring, and implementation), supervision of field crews, and performing fieldwork including prescribed burning, wetland delineations, and vegetation assessments. She also prepares and delivers public education and outreach materials and presentations to disseminate information to the general public. Nicky is a Certified Prescribed Burn Manager through the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, has received OSHA 30-hour General Industry training, and holds a Commercial Pesticide Applicator’s license in Illinois. Before entering into the private sector in 2007, she has worked or volunteered in some capacity since 1995, starting as a technician with Lake County Forest Preserve District's Youth Conservation Corps. Returning to Illinois in 2001, she acted as the steward for Wright Woods Forest Preserve within the Lake County Forest Preserve District, a Certified Interpretive at a local zoo, and as a wildlife coordinator and monitor for the Chicago Wilderness Habitat Project in Lake County. Nicky also volunteered in a variety of roles including monitoring populations of butterflies, dragonflies, amphibians, bats, songbirds, and banding waterfowl. Nicky is a member for the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County, Society for Ecological Restoration, Wildlife Society, Ecological Society of America, and The Land Conservancy of McHenry County. She is a single mother of two young children (Gwen-8 and Jameson-6), who enjoys going out on "backyard adventures", as well as historical adventures across America. Their favorite vacation locations include the Northwoods near Marquette, Michigan (where her undergraduate degree was obtained from: Northern Michigan University), to extended family members localities, or Colonial Williamsburg. Her passions include learning nearly anything outside, survival and historical living techniques, and ancient civilizations. Nicky is a self-taught first-generation hunter and is looking forward to bringing her children into this great sport with ethics and kindness in mind! She, her kids, and their dog (Liberty) have too many hobbies to list, but in short, they all just enjoy life together and spending time together with other friends with whom they teach a great many things to! To contact Nicky, click here.

District Wildlife Biologist

Beth Weber is a District Wildlife Biologist based out of Savanna, IL where she works with various public lands sites within her district working on wildlife habitat management and the various hunting programs. She conducts wildlife surveys, bands migratory birds, monitors wildlife diseases, and deals with other wildlife management concerns. She received a B.S. in Biology with a minor in Math from Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, IA and her M.S. in Conservation Biology from Illinois State University. Beth grew up on a hog, cattle, and grain farm near Danbury, Iowa and enjoys hiking, kayaking, exploring new places, and small-town festivals. To contact Beth, click here. 

Division of Wildlife Resources Chief

Mike Wefer is the Chief of the IDNR Division of Wildlife Resources where he oversees all management responsibilities of the Division, including the Division budget, legislation, Pittman-Robertson projects, and implementation of hunting and trapping seasons.  Mike joined the Wildlife Division in 1998. He has served as Wildlife Field Operations Section Head, Ag and Grassland Wildlife Program Manager, District Wildlife Biologist, and Associate Wildlife Biologist. Prior to joining the IDNR, Mike worked as a Biological Scientist Supervisor for the Florida Game and Freshwater Fish Commission, as a contract biologist for the Tennessee Valley Authority, and as a Ranger Assistant for the DuPage County Forest Preserve District. Mike received his bachelor’s degree from Eastern Illinois University in Zoology and his master’s in Wildlife and Fisheries Science from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. He has been active in the Wildlife Society since graduate school. Mike has been married to his college sweetheart, Maria since 1989. They live in Morton Illinois and have 4 children, Bethany, Henry, Sarah, and Daniel. Bethany is currently serving in the US Navy. Mike enjoys riding his bike, bow hunting in his ghillie suit, stream fishing, watching his kids grow up, and serving in local missions. Mike grew up on a hog and grain farm near Shobonier, Illinois (Fayette County). ​To contact Mike, click here.

Urban Waterfowl Project Manager

Ben Williams is the Urban Waterfowl Project Manager in the Wetland Wildlife Program where he provides IDNR staff and the public with technical assistance on urban waterfowl issues, including nuisance issues.  He coordinates Canada goose nest destruction permits as well as other migratory bird issues within the state.  Ben assists the program manager by providing recommendations on research, hunting plans, and other various waterfowl issues.  He also serves on the Mississippi Flyway Non-game Bird Technical Section.  He is originally from Minnesota, where he earned his B.Sc. at the University of Minnesota Crookston but moved to Illinois to earn his M.Sc. at the University of Illinois studying waterfowl spring migration. Ben enjoys spending his free time in duck blinds and tree stands, or fishing, camping, hiking, exploring the outdoors, and watching sports. To contact Ben, click here. 

District Wildlife/Hunter Heritage Biologist

Kaleb Wood is a Hunter Heritage District Wildlife Biologist based out of Champaign, where his focus is increasing recreational opportunities and access for hunters in Illinois while improving habitat conditions. He received his B.S. in Environmental Biology from Eastern Illinois University. Before achieving this title, he gained experience the with INHS, NGRREC, Macon County Conservation District, and as a Wildlife Intern and Natural Heritage Graduate Resident with the IDNR. Outside of work he enjoys hunting, fishing, dirt racing, hiking with his dogs, or working on the farm he grew up on. To contact Kaleb, click here.

Regional Wildlife Biologist
Ed Zwicker is a Regional Wildlife Biologist responsible for assisting and leading District Wildlife Biologists with carrying out the Division’s mission in 61 counties included in Regions IV, V, and the southern part of I.  Before joining the Wildlife Division as an Associate Wildlife Biologist in 2000, he served as the Assistant Managing Director at Winous Point Marsh Conservancy in Port Clinton, Ohio and operated a livestock and grain farm in Rock Island and Mercer Counties.  He holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Zoology and a Master’s of Science Degree in Zoology (wildlife management emphasis) from Southern Illinois University.  He is married to Karen and has one son, Ryan.  In his spare time, he prefers spending time with his family (including two rowdy cocker spaniels), hunting, shooting, gunsmithing, and metal fabrication. To contact Ed, click here.

Past Employees

Previous Division of Wildlife Resources Chief

Mark Alessi is now the Central Region Manager for the Division of Natural Heritage. He previously was the Chief of the IDNR Division of Wildlife Resources where he oversaw all management responsibilities of the Division, including the Division budget, legislation, Pittman-Robertson projects, and implementation of hunting and trapping seasons. Mark previously worked with the Illinois Natural History Survey in Champaign, IL, where he completed his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Wildlife Ecology.  While there, Mark worked on many projects, including shrubland bird research, white-tailed deer projects, waterfowl projects, and shorebird projects.  Mark was an IDNR Division of Natural Heritage Graduate Intern at the Prairie Ridge State Natural Area and also worked with the Human Dimensions of Wildlife Program. Mark enjoys spending time outdoors camping, fishing, and hunting with his wife Stephanie and his two kids, Evan and Leah. Mark and his family reside in Petersburg, IL. 

Retired District Wildlife Biologist

John Bozett was a District Wildlife Biologist located in Mt. Vernon and has logged over 30 years with the Department. His duties include wildlife and habitat management on both public and private land with a concentration on upland game habitat management on the State Sites within his District. Other duties and activities John participates in throughout the year include various upland and furbearer census routes, waterfowl and dove trapping and banding, nuisance wildlife abatement and assisting with CWD monitoring and management in whitetail deer. John grew up in Centralia and enjoys a variety of recreational activities and looks forward to spending time in the Illinois outdoors.

Retired District Wildlife Biologist

Kent Boyles was a District Wildlife Biologist for District 30 in Region 5.  His office was located in Mt. Vernon, IL   Kent worked with the various Public Lands Sites in his District, including Ramsey Lake State Park, Carlyle Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area, Stephen A Forbes State Recreation Area, Mt. Vernon Game Propagation Center, Rend Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area and Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park, relative to habitat management and the various hunting programs. He handles all of the nuisance wildlife complaints in his District, is involved with various surveys, e.g. upland bird, furbearer, forest wildlife, dove banding, duck banding, goose banding, etc., participates in disease monitoring, and works with Private Landowners to improve, enhance and develop wildlife habitat when time allows.  Kent Boyles has 32 years of service in the field and endeavors to assist new employees with the various types of work duties among other distinctions in the field.  Kent enjoys hunting, fishing, hiking and various family activities and he is from Salem, Illinois. Kent Boyles began employment with the Illinois Department of Conservation Division of Planning in 1986.   He transferred to the Division of Wildlife in 1988, where he has remained.   He has served in various field positions throughout the State within the Division. Kent graduated from Salem High School in 1980, Kaskaskia Junior College in 1982, Eastern Illinois University in 1984 and 1985. He possesses a Master of Science in Botany, Bachelor of Science degrees in Botany, Environmental Biology and Zoology and a minor in Chemistry. Kent was a State and National 4-H Forestry Award winner in 1981. He enjoys a variety of activities but is very involved with his family.  He has an avid interest in history and genealogy. 

Previous Wildlife Executive Secretary II

Lisa Bulinski was the Executive Secretary II for the Division of Wildlife. She is now the Office of Resource Conservation Executive Secretary III. She was the assistant to the Chief of Wildlife in the Springfield office. One of her main duties was creating and tracking the budget for the Division of Wildlife expenditures and everything that goes along with making purchases for the Division. She also assists administratively with the Division’s Nuisance Control Operator Program, Waterfowl Program, Furbearer Program and Deer and Turkey Harvest corrections and anything else handed to her. Lisa has been with the State of Illinois for almost 31 years. She has been with DNR since 2002. She has been married for 30 years and has three grown children, a son and two daughters. Lisa grew up Springfield and has resided in Athens for the last 28 years. She has what you could call a hobby farm with her many chickens, ducks, rabbits, dogs, cat, guinea pigs and whatever else her kids brought home to “keep”.  Her hobbies include working out every day, gardening and hanging out with her friends.

Previous District Wildlife Biologist

Dean Corgiat is now the Site Superintendent at Siloam Springs State Park. He previously was a District Wildlife Biologist where he managed wildlife, habitat and hunting programs on State owned lands and helped private landowners develop management plans for their own properties. Dean worked with many different wildlife-based organizations to achieve habitat improvement on several State-owned sites among other distinctions in the field. Dean also banded doves, ducks and geese, worked in Northern Illinois with CWD, and managed duck blinds on Mississippi River Pools 21 and 22. Dean enjoys playing hockey, hunting, trapping and raising turkeys. He hails from Pittsfield, IL.

Retired Wildlife Office Specialist

Bonnie Draughan was an Office Specialist who worked out of the Springfield office. She helped the programs with different issues and helps with answering the phone and emails. She also handled a lot of the paperwork involved with the CWD program. Bonnie graduated from Lincoln Land Community College and Sangamon State University (IUS). She completed her Bachelor of Arts degree at SSU. She has been married for 33 years, has two grown children, one granddaughter and another one on the way.  Bonnie started working for the State in 1991 at the Department of Energy and Natural Resources. Her job was in the library where she would assist in tracking down articles and books for the different offices comprising ENR. In 1995, Governor Jim Edgar consolidated several agencies into the Department of Natural Resources. Bonnie began working for Wildlife after DNR was formed. Bonnie enjoys reading, walking, traveling with her husband and spending time with her family, especially her granddaughter. She also makes jewelry and dabbles a little in scrapbooking and various crafts.

Retired Wildlife Disease and Invasive Species Program Manager
Doug Dufford was the Wildlife Disease and Invasive Species Program Manager based in Lena, IL coordinating wildlife disease, feral swine and large carnivore related activities including CWD management, EHD monitoring, and feral swine and large carnivore monitoring. Doug has a master’s degree in Zoology from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale and has served as President of the Illinois Chapter of the Wildlife Society. Doug helped coordinate wildlife disease, feral swine, and large carnivore activities within the state. Doug is a landowner and outdoor enthusiast from Stockton, IL.

Previous Wildlife and Hunter Heritage Manager

Jared Duquette previously was the IDNR Wildlife and Hunter Heritage Program that focused on enhancing public knowledge of wildlife conservation and participation in hunting in Illinois. Jared also served as the hunter recruitment, retention and reactivation (R3) coordinator for Illinois and oversaw collaboration among numerous government and non-government partners to develop, implement and adapt hunter R3 strategies statewide. He is now the state of Michigan's Chief of Wildlife. Jared has a Ph.D. in wildlife ecology, M.S. in wildlife management and B.S. in natural resources conservation. He has published numerous scientific papers on a range of wildlife, including white-tailed deer, large carnivores and tropical mammals. Jared’s career goal is to use strategic outreach to improve public knowledge and actionable support of wildlife conservation. Jared is an avid outdoorsman, runner and harmonica player. He is a native of Michigan and has worked in several regions across the U.S. and internationally.

Retired District Wildlife Biologist

Carl Handel was a District Wildlife Biologist where he administered Division programs, assisted the public with habitat and wildlife issues and performed habitat management activities on State sites much of which includes Public Land management for hunting activities, administering the agriculture Lease Management Program on State Sites and Nuisance Wildlife Abatement. Carl has been with the Department for 29 years. He was based out of the Sparta Field Office in Randolph County where he worked with state sites to improve habitat, eliminate exotic vegetation and assisted in activities to implement the State CWD surveillance and management program. Carl grew up in Savanna and enjoys being a musician, artisan of 18th century items and participates in shooting sports. 

Retired Office Coordinator   

Lori Johnson was an Office Coordinator at the IDNR Canal House Office in Rock Falls, IL.  She helped the biologists with their paperwork. Lori also assists Fisheries, Forestry and Natural Heritage Biologists. She works with Vendor Payments for the vouchering system, timekeeping for all 4 Divisions, and she also works with several Petty Cash Accounts. She assists the public with Watercraft registrations, deer applications and any questions from the public. Lori does the hunter fact sheet updates for Region I sites. Lori resides in Sterling with her husband J C of 44 years.  She has 2 children, 6 grandchildren and a new great grandchild expected in March. She spends time with her family and attending her grandchildren sporting events. She also is involved in her sorority, bowling and spending time with friends.    

Retired District Wildlife Biologist

Tim Krumwiede was a District Wildlife Biologist where Tim performed a variety of duties pertaining to wildlife and habitat management including; Public Land Management for Hunting Opportunities, Agricultural Lease Management on State Sites, and Nuisance Wildlife Abatement. Tim had served in the Pittsfield office for over 28 years and has worked extensively with the Waterfowl and Forest Game programs. Tim had helped with waterfowl surveys, bird banding, turkey trapping, and CWD monitoring and management. Tim grew up in Beardstown where he developed a passion for hunting and fishing. He still enjoys those pursuits today. 

 Retired District Wildlife Biologist

Kevin Oller was a District Wildlife Biologist where he performed a variety of duties pertaining to wildlife and habitat management including public land management for hunting opportunities, agricultural lease management on State Sites, and nuisance wildlife abatement. Kevin had served out of the Victoria field office for over 28 years. He had worked extensively on both public and private lands.  Kevin had helped with bird banding, turkey trapping and transplant, and with CWD management. Kevin grew up outside of Tower Hill in rural Shelby County where he developed a passion for hunting, fishing, and trapping. He still enjoys those pursuits today.

Retired District Wildlife Biologist

Frank Ostling was a District Wildlife Biologist where he performed a variety of duties pertaining to wildlife and habitat management including; Public Land Management for Hunting Opportunities, Agricultural Lease Management on State Sites, and Nuisance Wildlife Abatement. Frank had served in the Harmon field office for over 12 years and has worked extensively with the Upland and Forest Game programs.  Frank has helped with wildfire and prescribed burn management, bird banding, turkey trapping, and with CWD monitoring and management. Frank grew up in Elmhurst where he developed a passion for hunting and fishing. He still enjoys those pursuits today. 

Retired District Wildlife Biologist

Bob Massey was a District Wildlife Biologist in District 12 in Region 2. Bob had been in his District for 30 years. His office is located at the Des Plaines Propagation Center in Wilmington, Il. His duties included interactions with numerous State Parks and 3 Pheasant Habitat Areas. Other job duties included banding geese, wood ducks and doves, wildlife surveys including furbearer, upland song bird, upland point counts, and the Northeast Illinois Waterfowl Survey. Bob was the Team Leader for the Wilmington Chronic Wasting Disease effort which covers seven counties at the south end of the CWD zone.  Bob Got his BA from SIU-C and attended graduate school at SIU-C and worked in the Cooperative Wildlife Research Laboratory working on wildlife use of managed openings in the Shawnee National Forest. Bob has been active in the prescribed burn and wildfire training program and has gone on deployments throughout the west (including Minn.) and was deployed to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina as part of a saw crew.  Bob is Crew Boss, Squad boss, Incident Commander 4, Firing Boss certified and has gone out on fire as part of a helicopter crew. Bob has been married to Linda for 35 years and have two kids; Ross (Tasha) and Taylor (Van).  He likes fishing and hunting, bike riding and gardening.  He recently knocked off a bucket list item climbing to a glacier on Mt. Hood in Oregon. 

Retired District Wildlife Biologist

Scott Schaeffer was a district wildlife biologist in District 2. Scott has worked for DNR/DOC for almost 34 years. Scott performs duties surrounding the sound stewardship of wildlife populations including; habitat management on both public and private lands, conducting various wildlife population surveys and censuses, handling nuisance animal complaints, coordinating hunter activities on state manages sites, etc. Scott is especially interested in integrating the wildlife habitat needs with contemporary farming practices, and the related challenges. Scott has served on several private land committees charged with implementing new federal and state programs, and initiatives, and has been very active with the NGOs (Pheasants Forever, Wild Turkey Federation, etc.) working on conservation projects in his district. In his personal time, Scott enjoys managing his 60 acres in Carroll County, wood-working, bird-watching, gardening, and hunting. Scott hails from Rockford, Illinois.

Retired Wildlife Programs Section Manager
Paul Shelton was the Wildlife Programs Section Manager, where he oversaw all the cool things that this Division does. He completed a bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Management and a Master of Science Degree in Biology at Tennessee Technological University.  Upon completion, he worked as a faculty Research Associate at Tennessee Technological University investigating issues related to wildlife, habitat, and land reclamation; and later became a Wildlife Officer for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.  He returned to school at Southern Illinois University's Cooperative Wildlife Research Laboratory, where he received his Ph.D. in Zoology.  From 1993 until early 2018, he served as Forest Wildlife Program Manager for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, where he was responsible for statewide management of forest wildlife species (deer, wild turkey, squirrels, ruffed grouse, etc.) and for Chronic Wasting Disease management.

Previous State Waterfowl Biologist

Wetland Wildlife Program Manager

Randy Smith was the Wetland Wildlife Program Manager/State Waterfowl Biologist. Randy oversaw the wetland wildlife and waterfowl program which includes statewide waterfowl hunting regulations, wetland habitat management recommendations, wetland, waterfowl and other waterbird monitoring and research within the agency as well as with partners (e.g., Universities) and was involved with statewide wetland conservation planning including wetland habitat acquisition. Randy served as Illinois’ technical representative to the Mississippi Flyway Council which cooperatively manages migratory birds and hunting regulations among 14 states and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Randy was the leader of the Wetlands Campaign of the Illinois Wildlife Action Plan and a member of the Illinois Migratory Waterfowl Stamp (Duck Stamp) Fund Committee which oversees expenditure of Duck Stamp funds annually. Randy is a Wisconsin native who obtained his B.S. from the University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point, M.S. from Southern Illinois University–Carbondale and spent several years conducting waterfowl and wetland research with the Illinois Natural History Survey prior to starting work with DNR. He is an avid waterfowl hunter and off-road cyclist and enjoys involving his family in those pursuits.