Ray Metzler has been promoted to Wildlife Section Assistant Chief with the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF). As assistant chief, Metzler will coordinate needed wildlife research and surveys, and ensure various program guidelines and laws are met, among other duties.
Metzler earned his Bachelor of Science in Wildlife from West Virginia University in 1982, and in 1986 joined the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources as a WFF Wildlife Biologist at Wolf Creek Wildlife Management Area in Walker County. In 1987, Metzler earned his Masters in Wildlife Science from Auburn University and he was promoted to Hunter Education Coordinator in 1993.
As Hunter Education Coordinator for the state, Metzler helped Alabama’s hunter education program become one of the best in the country and he was a leader in the development of web-based hunter education materials. He also supervised the development of Alabama’s National Archery in the Schools (NASP) program. In partnership with the Archery Trade Association, Metzler helped develop the first state-run archery park in the nation. Today there are multiple WFF archery parks across the state where the public can enjoy archery shooting.
According to his supervisor, WFF Wildlife Section Chief Gary Moody, Metzler is an exemplary and enthusiastic leader, who actively seeks input from others in an effort to improve WFF programs. “Ray is one of the most positive individuals on our staff,” Moody said. “He leads by example, accomplishes much without taking personal credit and is incredibly effective at developing partnerships. His leadership as assistant chief will lead to improvements in the Wildlife Section.”
Metzler, who lives with his wife and daughter in Prattville, Ala., is an active angler and loves hunting, especially bowhunting. His son is studying wildlife biology at Auburn University. The Metzlers are also avid street and mountain bikers and enjoy riding the Rails to Trails facilities in Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland when they have the time.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.outdooralabama.com .