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Back to search results Apply now Job no: 504297
Work type: Faculty/Academic Staff
Major Administrative Unit / College: College Of Agriculture And Nat Resources
Department: Fisheries And Wildlife 10002344
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: East Lansing
Categories: Full Time (90-100%), Tenure System Faculty, Academic Management, Administrative/Business/Professional, Agriculture, Non-Union

Position Summary

The Department of Fisheries and Wildlife in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Michigan State University invites applications for Chairperson. We seek a dynamic, visionary, and inclusive leader who will strategically focus the intellectual resources of our faculty, students and staff to address some of the most challenging natural resource issues confronting society. Over the last decade, the Fisheries and Wildlife faculty has diversified and grown to 43 members who are dedicated to advancing the frontiers of scientific discovery and preparing the next generation of leaders through engaged learning and outreach. Our success is fueled by extensive collaborations across a rich array of disciplines within the natural and social sciences, and through partnerships with management agencies and stakeholder groups. The Department’s size, diversity, and commitment to the land-grant philosophy represents a substantial opportunity for a leader with the vision and desire to grow our impacts across the Great Lakes region, the nation, and the globe. The position is a full-time, 12-month appointment, that will include a rank of full Professor with tenure. The expected start date is August 2019 or sooner.


The Chairperson will provide leadership of the Department in all teaching, research, extension, and outreach programs. The Chairperson is expected to maintain and enhance a creative, productive, and inclusive environment for faculty, staff, and students, and to serve as the principal representative of the Department with authority and responsibility for administrative decisions. The Chairperson reports directly to the Dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and interacts with senior leadership of the College, MSU Extension, MSU AgBioResearch, and partner agencies and stakeholders with whom the Department has cooperative agreements.

Key responsibilities of the Chairperson are to:

  • Provide leadership for advancing and articulating the mission, vision and values of the Department within the broader mission of CANR and MSU;
  • Recruit and retain outstanding faculty and staff, assign responsibilities, evaluate performance, and promote faculty, student and staff development with transparency and empathy;
  • Manage and administer the Department budget, providing leadership in the procurement of financial and structural resources necessary to enable the Department’s success;
  • Work cooperatively within the departmental governance structure, which currently includes two associate chairs, an undergraduate advisor, and a faculty-elected Department Advisory Committee;
  • Foster a culture of transparency and equity that supports the success of a large and diverse community of faculty, staff, and students;
  • Promote diversity and inclusion in classrooms and the work environment;
  • Serve as liaison and advocate for the Department within the larger governance structure of the College and University, and with other Departments and Colleges (especially those housing jointly-appointed faculty);
  • Promote the Department’s teaching, research, extension, and outreach programs to state, regional, national and international audiences;
  • Maintain and enhance existing relationships with partnered agencies and stakeholder groups via the Partnership for Ecosystem Management (PERM) and similar agreements; and,
  • Develop and cultivate relationships with state and federal agencies of the U.S. and Canadian governments, Tribal governance, private organizations, industry groups, departmental alumni, and other entities actively engaged in Department activities.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources are committed to achieving excellence by creating and sustaining an accessible and inclusive culture that values cultural and academic diversity. We are an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. The College is particularly interested in candidates of all backgrounds who are committed to the principle that academic excellence is achieved through open access and proactive inclusion.

Salary and Benefits

Salary will be commensurate with qualifications. MSU offers a generous benefits package (details at:

About the Department

The Department of Fisheries and Wildlife is a vibrant community of scholars currently comprising 43 core faculty, 100 graduate and 240 undergraduate students, 31 research associates, and 6 full-time staff.  Our Mission is to build local, national, and international capacities to conserve ecosystems that support fish, wildlife, and society through integrated programs in research, education and engagement.  We are committed to the integrative nature of natural resources conservation and management, with our expertise ranging from disciplinary areas with a long-standing history in the domain of fisheries and wildlife to those emerging more recently.  The Department values and embraces outreach and engagement with a broad spectrum of stakeholders to collaboratively address natural resources challenges. Collectively, we are tackling challenges and developing solutions in areas including, but not limited to: managing for sustainable harvest of fisheries and wildlife populations, developing sound governance structures and effective policies, assessing the ecological status of animal populations and their ecosystems at broad geographic scales, and understanding and responding to drivers of global change. The Department maintains a strong and diverse research portfolio by securing funds from a range of sources including state, federal, and international natural resource agencies, traditional federal science agencies, as well as private conservation organizations. The Department offers a single B.S. degree to undergraduate students, with five concentration areas and several relevant minor degrees. The Department also has an active graduate program that draws top students nationally and internationally who have the option to receive joint graduate degrees and specializations across campus.

About the University

Michigan State University is the nation’s pioneer land-grant university and one of the top research universities in the world. Home to nationally ranked academic, residential college, and service-learning programs, MSU enjoys a park-like campus with outlying research facilities and natural areas. MSU is a diverse community that provides regional, national, and international leadership in research, excellence in teaching (with an emphasis on international engagement), and a strong extension program that partners with diverse stakeholders to bring science-based responses to social and environmental challenges. The University proactively upholds the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and provides individual accessibility plans to students and employees with disabilities. MSU is also proactive in exploring employment opportunities for dual career families, both inside and outside the University, and respects all family forms. Information regarding MSU’s dual career support can be found here and Information about WorkLife at MSU can be found here.

Michigan possesses abundant natural resources and is surrounded by the beautiful Great Lakes. The MSU campus is located in the City of East Lansing, adjacent to the capital city of Lansing. The area has a diverse population of approximately 450,000. Local communities have excellent school systems and place a high value on education. The region has numerous music and theatre offerings, with an active arts community that includes the Wharton Center for the Performing Arts and the Broad Art Museum. Michigan boasts a growing local food movement, over 200 wineries and 200 microbreweries, diverse outdoor recreation activities, and a range of sporting events year-round.

Required Degree

Doctorate -natural resources or closely-related discipline

Minimum Requirements

Qualified candidates must: (a) have earned a doctorate in a natural resources or closely-related discipline and meet the requirements for tenure at the rank of full professor in the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife at MSU; (b) have experience in administration of personnel, budgets, and programs; (c) demonstrate outstanding leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills necessary to lead a diverse community; and, (d) demonstrate a commitment to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion in a range of academic and professional activities.

Desired Qualifications

Desired qualifications include: 

  • An outstanding record of achievement, including a demonstrated record of scholarship, teaching, service, leadership, team building, and developing and fostering partnerships.
  • Experience administering a large, multidisciplinary, and diverse faculty with a variety of appointments and assignments across the college and university.
  • Experience overseeing academic department budgets and the ability to garner additional funds and resources for departmental programs.
  • Experience building capacities that support natural resource management and conservation through integrated programs in research, education, and outreach and engagement, consistent with the land-grant mission.

Required Application Materials

To apply, applicants must submit an application at the MSU Human Resources website at that includes: (1) a two-page cover letter of application indicating your interest in the position and the Department, including the names, mailing addresses, email addresses, and telephone numbers of five references (candidates will be contacted to obtain letters of reference if invited to interview); (2) a statement of administrative philosophy and vision for strategically defining program direction and growth for the future, fostering faculty/staff/student development, and promoting diversity and inclusion in the Department (1500 words max.); (3) a narrative describing administrative and professional experience that relates to the Chairperson’s responsibilities (outlined above, 1500 words max.); and (4) a complete curriculum vitae. Review of the applications will begin August 1, 2018 and the search will remain open until the position is filled. Start date is negotiable (January - August 2019 is desired). 

Special Instructions

For more information on this position, please contact the search committee co-chairs:

Dr. Michael Wagner                                                     Dr. Richard Kobe

Department of Fisheries and Wildlife                      Chair, Department of Forestry

480 Wilson Rd., Room 13                                           480 Wilson Rd., Room 126

East Lansing, MI 48824                                                East Lansing, MI 48824

517-353-5485                                                                 517-355-0093

E-mail:                                       E-mail:,

Web:                                   Web:

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