Bancroft, Tom (Non-resident)
Tom grew up in western Pennsylvania where he obtained an interest in natural resources. He earned a BS in biology from the University of Arizona in 1973, an MA in zoology in 1978, and a PhD. in biology in 1983 from the University of South Florida. His education emphasized ecological and behavioral studies of vertebrates, with special emphasis on birds. In late 2010, Tom has ended his three-year employment as vice president and chief scientist in the Science Division of the National Audubon Society in Washington, D.C. He oversaw the national science division for Audubon and provided science leadership across the country. The science division provides the factual foundations for Audubon’s policies and positions on conservation issues. The division analyzes the status of birds using data from the Christmas Bird Count and oversees the development of the Important Bird Area program in the United States. The division works closely with Bird Life International on the development of conservation across the western hemisphere. Before joining Audubon, Tom led the research department at the Wilderness Society. In general, his research focused on the ecological, economic, and legal issues associated with protecting and restoring ecosystems. National projects were focused on National Forests and Bureau of Land Management lands, while regional projects were focused on the Northern Forests, Appalachian Forests, Northern Rockies, Colorado Plateau, Sierra Nevada, Klamath Basin, and Cascades. While much of the work was centered on public lands managed by the US Forest Service and the BLM in western states, projects in the eastern US examine sustainable forestry and community issues on private lands. Before joining The Wilderness Society, Tom served as director of the MacArthur Agro-ecology Research Center in central Florida, which conducted research on the relationship between cattle ranching, citrus production and ecological systems. Previously, Tom worked for the National Audubon Society, where he developed studies that examined the extent and pattern of forest loss and fragmentation in the Florida Keys and the effects of this loss on forest nesting birds and other organisms. He also undertook a series of studies on the foraging and breeding ecology of wading birds in the Everglades relative to hydrologic conditions. As senior scientist for National Audubon, he devoted considerable time and effort to studying issues related to the interface between science and policy. Tom has been participating in a project organized by the H. John Heinz Center for Science, Economics, and the Environment to develop a group of indicators that measure the state of the nation’s ecosystems in a manner analogous to the indicator system economists use to monitor the health of the economy. He continues to work with the Round Table on Sustainable Forestry on the condition of the United States forests. He served on the implementation committee for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Multispecies Recovery Plan for the Everglades, which was focused on a comprehensive approach to saving the several dozen endangered species in the region. He also served on the review panel for the Natural Resource Challenge of the National Park Service. The Challenge was designed to incorporate natural resource management into Park Service work. He has also served on an advisory panel for a Carrying Capacity Study of the Florida Keys which was conducted by the State of Florida and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.