December 21, 2006

Pennsylvania Game Commission: Capouillez Named Wildlife Habitat Management Bureau Director

HARRISBURG, Pa., Dec. 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Carl G. Roe today announced that William Capouillez has been appointed the agency's new Bureau of Wildlife Habitat Management director. Capouillez fills the vacancy created by the reassignment of Scott Klinger, who recently accepted a position in the Bureau of Wildlife Management.

"With the many challenges facing the Game Commission, I know that I can rely on Bill Capouillez's ability to evaluate a situation and chart a course of action that is best for wildlife and for our hunting and trapping heritage," Roe said. "I have been very impressed with Bill's efforts on previous assignments and have no doubt that he will bring that same level of commitment to his new role within the Game Commission."

As director of the Bureau of Wildlife Habitat Management, Capouillez will work with the agency's six regional offices, 38 foresters, 30 land managers and more than 200 Food and Cover Corps employees to implement the agency's multimillion-dollar habitat improvement program on the more than 1.4-million- acre State Game Lands system. In addition, he will be responsible for overseeing all timbering activities, oil/gas and mining leases, wildlife habitat enhancement projects, State Game Lands planning and development program, and finding additional acres of State Game Lands to purchase.

Capouillez also will be responsible for administration of the agency's federal Pittman-Robertson program, which provides the Game Commission with its share of the federal excise tax collected on the sale of sporting arms and ammunition. The Game Commission annually receives an average of $8 million from this program, which reimburses the agency for eligible habitat improvement projects completed on State Game Lands.

Capouillez's other duties will include: overseeing the agency's engineering program for dams, buildings and other infrastructure; environmental planning and habitat protection review program; and the agency's public access programs, which help open an additional 4.5 million acres of private land to public hunting and trapping. He also is the agency's representative on the Environmental Quality Board and serves as one of the agency's Pennsylvania Emergency Management liaison officers.

Most recently, Capouillez has spearheaded the agency's efforts to draft a voluntary agreement for wind energy companies seeking to erect turbines in Pennsylvania. As part of the agreement, companies would commit to seeking to locate and situate turbines so as to avoid, minimize and mitigate their impacts on birds and bats.

Capouillez has been with the Game Commission since 1992, when he started as the agency's first-ever professionally licensed geologist with responsibility for the agency's development and implementation of its current oil/gas and mineral recovery program. His performance during that time earned him the agency's "Outstanding Employee of the Year" for 1997.

Capouillez was later promoted to Chief of the Division of Environmental Planning and Habitat Protection, where he supervised the Game Commission's statewide wildlife habitat impact reviews for transportation and construction projects, natural resource damage assessments, and the oil/gas and mineral recovery program.

A native of Bellwood, Blair County, Capouillez received his bachelor's degree in earth and mineral sciences from Pennsylvania State University in 1987, and a professional geologist license from the Department of State's Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs. He initially was employed by a private consulting company and later the state Department of Environmental Resources prior to beginning his career with the Game Commission.

Capouillez also pursued a military career in the U.S. Army as an enlisted soldier and later became a commissioned officer where he eventually graduated with top honors from the Command and General Staff College's Combined Arms Services Staff School. In 2004, Capouillez retired at the rank of Major, and was decorated numerous times throughout his military career for his meritorious service. Prior to his retirement, he had held several command level positions and was the acting Brigade Executive Officer for his unit.

Capouillez is an active member in Ducks Unlimited, National Wild Turkey Federation, Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program and Pennsylvania Farm Bureau. He also is a member of the McVeytown Presbyterian Church Deacons, Local Mission Service Fund, Cub Scouts and McVeytown Lodge No. 376. He also participates as a coach for local youth sports programs.

Capouillez is married to Tracy Shearer Capouillez, of Port Matilda, and has four children: Heather, 16; Kiersten, 11; Gage, 10; and Brock, 6. The Capouillezes currently reside in McVeytown, Mifflin County.

Created in 1895 as an independent state agency, the Game Commission is responsible for conserving and managing all wild birds and mammals in the Commonwealth, establishing hunting seasons and bag limits, enforcing hunting and trapping laws, and managing habitat on the 1.4 million acres of State Game Lands it has purchased over the years with hunting and furtaking license dollars to safeguard wildlife habitat. The agency also conducts numerous wildlife conservation programs for schools, civic organizations and sportsmen's clubs.

The Game Commission does not receive any general state taxpayer dollars for its annual operating budget. The agency is funded by license sales revenues; the state's share of the federal Pittman-Robertson program, which is an excise tax collected through the sale of sporting arms and ammunition; and monies from the sale of oil, gas, coal, timber and minerals derived from State Game Lands.

Pennsylvania Game Commission

CONTACT: Jerry Feaser, Pennsylvania Game Commission, +1-717-705-6541,[email protected]

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