Williamson, Lonnie L. (Deceased)
Lonnie was born on November 12, 1939, in Jackson County, Georgia. He grew up in a farm family and graduated from Jefferson High School in Jefferson, Georgia. Lonnie earned an ABJ degree from the University of Georgia’s School of Journalism in 1960. He received an MS degree in wildlife management from University of Georgia (Athens) School of Forest Resources in 1969. Two years of postgraduate studies in natural resource economics were completed at the University of Maryland in 1972. Lonnie began his professional career in 1958 as a reporter for the Athens Banner Herald in Athens, Georgia. He headed the outdoor and newspaper advertising division for Williams and Company Advertising in Athens from 1966 to 1970 and also was research associate for the Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study at the University of Georgia’s College of Veterinary Medicine. In 1970, he moved to Washington, D.C., as editor of the Outdoor News Bulletin for the Wildlife Management Institute. Lonnie was elected secretary of the Institute in 1975 and vice president and treasurer in 1987. He retired from the Institute in 1999. Equally at home in journalism or wildlife ecology, Lonnie worked from 1984 to 1995 as editor-at-large for Outdoor Life magazine. He has contributed hundreds of articles to other magazines and publications and has served as president and board chairman for the Mason-Dixon Outdoor Writers Association and the Outdoor Writers Association of America. He has been a member of the board of directors for the Chesapeake Wildlife Heritage and the Pinchot Institute for Conservation. Lonnie received the Jade of Chiefs Award from the Outdoor Writers Association of America in 1983, which is the association’s highest recognition for conservation achievement. He is included in the book National Leaders of American Conservation published by the Smithsonian Institution and has received Distinguished Service awards from the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and National Military Fish and Wildlife Association. He was a resident of Arnold, Maryland, for many years, but then moved to Athens, Georgia, after retirement. Lonnie’s special interests include rare plants, bobwhite quail, history, livestock and stock dogs, and Ireland. He is a member of The Wildlife Society, International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, and the Cosmos Club. Lonnie died on December 18, 2013 in Athens, Georgia. Lonnie was elected a member of the Washington Biologists’ Field Club in 1986.