The Ralph W. Schreiber Conservation Award, established in 2005, recognizes extraordinary scientific contributions to the conservation, restoration, or preservation of birds and/or their habitats by an individual or small team. The award honors Ralph Schreiber, a prominent figure in the American Ornithologists' Union known for his enthusiasm, energy, and dedication to research and conservation. The award comprises a framed certificate and an honorarium provided by the society's endowed Ralph W. Schreiber Fund. Past recipients present at this year's meeting of the American Ornithological Society (AOS) include John Fitzpatrick and Joe Wunderle. This year the Schreiber Award goes to Dr. John Sauer.
John is a wildlife biologist and statistician with the USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. He has been a driving force and central figure behind the statistical design and analyses of two of the most influential datasets in North American bird conservation: the Christmas Bird Count and the Breeding Bird Survey. Both of these citizen science datasets provide our view of the status and future trajectories of all North American birds, and both comprise messy data. John's efforts to develop robust approaches for analysis have generated highly influential State of the Birds reports. These reports on population trends and conservation status for North American birds influence millions, if not billions, of dollars in federal, state, and private funds for conservation and research in numerous countries. In addition, John has developed a variety of other statistical approaches for modeling population counts, survival rates, and abundance patterns.
In recognition of these contributions to ornithology, the AOS is pleased to name John Sauer as the 2018 recipient of the Ralph W. Schreiber Conservation Award.