Governor Jay Nixon announced that he will appoint longtime state environment and agriculture attorney Harry Bozoian, of Columbia, as the new Director of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, effective October 7th, 2016. According to a press release, he will replace Director Sara Parker Pauley, who, on Wednesday, was named by the Conservation Commission as the first female director of the Missouri Department of Conservation.

“Harry’s breadth of experience and knowledge of environmental issues will make him an excellent Director of the Department of Natural Resources,” Gov. Nixon said. “I know he will capably lead the MDNR in serving the people of Missouri and in ensuring our natural resources are protected for future generations.”

Bozoian is a senior policy advisor to the Governor and previously was the deputy chief of staff for the Governor’s Office. He also has served as the lead official for the State of Missouri on issues concerning the Mississippi and Missouri rivers. Prior to his positions with the Governor’s Office, he was Deputy Director for the Missouri Department of Agriculture and served as Acting Director of the department in 2013.

During the historic 2011 flood, Gov. Nixon appointed Bozoian to assist farmers and levee districts in the rehabilitation of their farms and levees. For his work, Bozoian received the Outstanding Service and Assistance Award from the Missouri Levee and Drainage District Association.

In 2012, the Governor appointed Bozoian to lead the Drought Assistance Program through the Soil and Water Conservation Program, which provided vital relief to Missouri's livestock and crop production industry. From 1993 to 2008, he was an assistant attorney general in the Agriculture and Environment Division for then-Attorney General Nixon. Bozoian operates and manages a 536-acre row crop and hay farm in Monroe County, as well as an 80-acre farm in Chariton County.

Pauley was appointed by Gov. Nixon as Director of the Department of Natural Resources in December 2010. A lifelong conservationist and an avid hunter, Pauley has been an executive committee and board member of the Conservation Federation of Missouri, as well as a member of the board of the American National Fish & Wildlife Museum, where she served as director of conservation programs from 2005-2006. She has published a number of articles on wildlife and natural resources management.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources is responsible for preserving the quality of Missouri’s air, water and land. Among its programs are Missouri State Parks; Missouri Geological Survey; the Division of Environmental Quality; and the Soil and Water Conservation Program.

Gov. Jay Nixon