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Secretary’s Message – October 2023: DNR to Showcase Science This Month

Science is the foundation of the department’s conservation efforts

Photo of three women working in a laboratory

Maryland Geological Survey scientists at work, photo by Stephen Badger, Maryland Department of Natural Resources

When I took the helm as Secretary of the Department of Natural Resources at the beginning of this year, one of my primary goals was to reaffirm the importance of science throughout the agency. I want to ensure the department’s conservation work, ranging from fisheries management to flood mitigation, is rooted in science and evaluated through real-world testing. 

The Department of Natural Resources employs scientists and technicians in numerous fields, all of whom are committed to this goal. Every day they compile and analyze information across several subject areas with a wide range of partners. To recognize their work, this month DNR will celebrate our first Science Week, from Oct. 16 to 20. During this week, I and other senior DNR leaders will be traveling across the state to observe and highlight this important work.

The Moore/Miller Administration is focused on data and science for decision making. Throughout Science Week we will put a spotlight on the everyday science and data collection that guides us in managing our forests, monitoring wildlife, sampling water, modeling coastal flooding, and much more. 

This week will also highlight the important coordination and cooperation we have with Maryland’s nonprofit environmental organizations and higher educational institutions. Through these partnerships, we can leverage their own scientific resources, engage citizens from every community, and foster the next generation of experts and advocates who will further this work. 

Most importantly we will be showing how DNR’s work matters to the people of Maryland. 

We apply our science toward goals in social justice and community action to nurture relationships as well as to advance economic interests and protect natural, cultural, and historic resources.

I thank our scientific community for their dedication to the pursuit of knowledge that will make Maryland a better place for all.

Josh Kurtz is Secretary of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources