October 19, 2007
October 19, 2007 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) this week announced that William H. Clay, deputy administrator for the wildlife services (WS) program, has received a 2007 Presidential Rank Award as a meritorious executive.
The award recognizes career senior executives who sustain accomplishments over an extended period of time that demonstrate strength, integrity, industry and relentless commitment to public service.
"This remarkable honor is awarded to strong leaders who are recommended by a panel of citizens based on their achievements in public service," said APHIS administrator Cindy Smith. "Bill Clay personifies the qualities necessary to lead an organization that is innovative, cost effective and beneficial to the public."
Clay was recognized for his efforts to lead change, increase diversity and build coalitions among other accomplishments. WS has the federal responsibility for protecting the nation's agricultural and natural resources, property and public health and safety from damage and conflicts caused by wildlife.
Under Clay's leadership, WS established a wildlife disease monitoring and surveillance program that includes an emergency response component. The program also assists in natural and man-made disasters, like hurricanes and oil spills, and can respond in the event of foreign animal-disease detection.
Clay was also recognized for building domestic and international coalitions including rabies surveillance and response work with Canada and Mexico, airport safety work in Africa, South America and Asia and avian influenza surveillance work with numerous countries around the world.
Clay has served with WS since 1986, becoming deputy administrator in August 2000.