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Happy Trails to Brian Lawhead!

After nearly 40 years in the ABR family, Brian Lawhead is retiring. Since beginning as a Research Biologist with ABR in 1982, Brian has been a pivotal influence on ABR’s growth into the company it is today, all while building an extensive project portfolio as an ABR Senior Scientist. After earning his B.S. in biological science from Cornell University in 1975 and his M.S. in wildlife management from UAF in 1983, Brian has been active in both terrestrial and marine biological studies in Alaska, from monitoring breeding seabirds along the Kenai Peninsula to leading numerous studies of mammals in northern Alaska.

Over much of the past 4 decades, Brian has studied the interactions of caribou with oil fields and has been instrumental in developing our current knowledge about industry impacts on caribou and about potential mitigation methods for oil development in the Arctic. His enthusiasm for wildlife, however, extends to his free time as well. Every December, he volunteers to serve as an area coordinator for the Arctic Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count and spends much of his time birdwatching throughout the year.

Brian has a keen talent for distilling disparate sources of information, efficiently working through large stacks of scientific literature about proposed development projects in Alaska to develop balanced and objective assessments of development impacts on wildlife species. These skills, along with his penchant for sticking to strictures recommended by the Council on Environmental Quality, have facilitated his growth into one of ABR’s premier NEPA practitioners.

Brian is both an exceptionally well-rounded biologist, with in-depth knowledge of many wildlife species and their environs, and a gifted writer and science communicator. His legacy of excellence will be upheld by the writers he has mentored at ABR. We look forward to receiving his continued guidance and advice and to hearing all about his future adventures. Thank you, Brian, for all your years of inspired service and passion for research.


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