Featured, Outdoors

ATLANTA, GA (July, 19 2016): Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Mark Williams has announced the appointment of Rusty Garrison to serve as the Director of the Wildlife Resources Division of DNR.

Mr. Garrison has been with DNR for 18 years having served most recently as the manager of the Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center in Mansfield, Georgia.  He has served in numerous capacities with DNR, having held roles such as Assistant Chief of Game Management and State Coordinator of Project WILD.  Before his career with DNR, Mr. Garrison worked for the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service for nearly nine years.  Mr. Garrison holds the degrees of Bachelor of Science in Animal Sciences and a Master of Science in Wildlife Biology, both from the University of Georgia.

Mr. Garrison is active in his local community having previously volunteered as a fire fighter and first responder for his county EMS.  He is also currently the Chief of the DNR Mountain Search and Rescue Team.  Mr. Garrison has traveled to over 65 countries while on mission trips and remains active in his local church.  He is married to his wife Sue, has three daughters, and is a proud grandfather.

The Director of Wildlife Resources leads the Division of DNR tasked with conserving, enhancing, and promoting Georgia’s Wildlife Resources, including game and nongame species, fish and protected plants.  The Wildlife Resources Division is comprised of three sections—Game Management, Fisheries Management, and Nongame Conservation.  Mr. Garrison will assume his role on August 1st and the Board of Natural Resources will take action to approve Mr. Garrison’s appointment at the August Board Meeting.

“Rusty brings a wealth of experience, leadership, and vision to the Wildlife Resources Division,” said Commissioner Williams.  “I’m delighted Rusty will step up to the challenge of leading this Division and I am confident that he will be an asset to all Georgians in the protection of our State’s precious resources.”

For more information on the Wildlife Resources Division, go to

The mission of the Department of Natural Resources is to sustain, enhance, protect and conserve Georgia’s natural, historic and cultural resources for present and future generations, while recognizing the importance of promoting the development of commerce and industry that utilize sound environmental practices. 


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