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William H. Nuckols, Principal, W.H. Nuckols Consulting


Mr. William Nuckols is a scientist by background and a policy expert and communicator by practice.
His 20+ years of work in the field of environmental science and policy is well respected, and he has received awards and letters recognizing his contributions by President Obama, the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works, members of Congress and members of industry.
He is an expert at combining the capabilities of multiple government agencies and NGOs and working toward a unified and targeted goal. In particular Mr. Nuckols has led several projects which have utilized needs expressed by the military for training or proof of concept trials for weapons systems with interests of federal environmental agencies such as NOAA and DOI. His track record for success includes leveraging the skills and interests of senior career and political SES officials along with representatives from the Executive Office of the President to accomplish high profile, real-world joint service training missions in Florida, Washington State and Hawaii.
His skills in strategic communications and his experience as a spokesperson for federal and NGO organizations has resulted in his appearances on international, national and regional TV. Radio interviews of Mr. Nuckols have appeared several times on National Public Radio in the United States, Canadian Broadcast Company, and in Australia and Europe. Articles about Mr. Nuckols’ work on oceans have appeared in print in numerous publications in several languages.
His expertise in multi-agency programs and policies has been called upon to brief members of Congress, officials in multiple Presidential Administrations, as well as elected and career officials in state governments and representatives of foreign countries. 
Since 1998 Mr. Nuckols has served as the Principal of W.H. Nuckols Consulting, an environmental policy and strategic communications company located in Washington, D.C. 


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Mr. William (Will) Nuckols is a seasoned professional with extensive experience crafting and representing clients’ policy positions before Congress, federal agencies and states. A marine scientist by background and a policy expert and communicator by practice, his 20+ years of work in the field of pubic policy and science is well respected. He is an expert at leveraging the capabilities of multiple government agencies and NGOs and working toward a unified and targeted goal. His environmental policy work has included providing direct support for senior Administration officials including cabinet-level agency leaders, political appointees, and career SES officials at multiple federal Departments, partnering with members of Congress and their staffs, and briefing representatives of foreign countries. His skill in strategic communications and his experience as a spokesperson for federal and NGO organizations has resulted in multiple appearances on international, national and regional TV and in a variety of print publications in multiple languages.

Current Position (1998-present)
Principal, W.H. Nuckols Consulting, an environmental policy and strategic communications firm whose clients have included: U.S. Department of Commerce/NOAA, U.S. EPA, Coastal America (a federal committee comprising 13 Departments and the Executive Office of the President), State of California, State of Florida, J.M. Clayton Company, Gahagan and Bryant Associates, Blue Frontier Campaign, Homeland Policy Security Institute Group, Team 4MIL, and others. 

Major Achievements:

  • Conceived and implemented a major federal/state/local marine environmental restoration and protection project in South Florida. (Recognized for leadership in a letter from President Obama and a Coastal America Partnership Award).
  • Coauthored EPA report on climate change and sea level rise adaptation strategies for the Mid-Atlantic Region. (Published in Environmental Research Letters).
  • Created the first-ever hazardous dive-training program for the U.S. military to address derelict fishing gear in Puget Sound, WA. (Recognized for leadership in a letter from Rep. Rick Larsen)
  • Conceived a research initiative to use Military LADAR technology to locate and remove marine debris from the Pacific Ocean.
  • Worked with Congress to pass legislation to preserve sustainable domestic blue crab and oyster industries. (Recognized by trade organizations for commitment to their industry and rural seafood producing communities).

Ongoing and Prior Experience from a Wide Range of Projects Includes:

Conducting U.S. Federal Agency, Congressional and Foreign Government Relations

  • Develop and represent organizations’ environmental policy positions before Congress, federal and state agencies, NGOs and the media.
  • Craft corporate policy positions on labor, immigration, international trade, and marketing and represent those interests before Executive agencies and Congress.
  • Prepare Congressional testimony, public speeches, press releases, position papers, reports, and technical presentations for policy staff, scientific staff and lay audiences.
  • Author bill language and produce briefing materials for federal and congressional staff.
  • Lead client office visits with Congressional members, professional staff and Committee staff.
  • Organize and implement Capitol Hill events and build bipartisan House and Senate coalitions.
  • Organize the largest ever green energy and ocean policy energy Hill lobby day in 2011
  • Testify before governmental committees.
  • Track and match agency projects with agency Congressional authorities and expertise.
  • Brief foreign governments on environmental protection and restoration issues.

Representing Agencies’ Policies and Positions via Strategic Communications

  • Manage national, regional, local and international outreach efforts for multi-agency federal environmental projects. Manage media campaigns combining the collective resources of county, state and federal public affairs teams for greatest effect.
  • Serve as federal agency spokesman for print, radio and television coverage. Leverage the unique stories to add an education and outreach component to restoration project reaching millions of people with front-page newspaper, national and international radio, and regional and national TV news coverage.
  • Lead a media campaign targeted to generate media coverage in multiple markets on the east coast and raise awareness about sequestered EPA climate change research, reports, the muzzling of EPA scientists, the impacts of sea level rise and the likely environmental impacts of coastal communities’ plans to address the threat of rising seas.
  • Associate Member, Society for Environmental Journalism.

Managing Multidisciplinary Teams

  • Foster policy development between multi-agency groups. Integrate biological, engineering and policy expertise from multiple stakeholders and interest groups to address environmental problems. Facilitate partnerships between a multitude of federal agencies, corporations, non-profits and universities.
  • Organize and implement conferences, technical workshops, and national level federal functions. Conduct multi-agency Scientific and Technical Advisory committee workshops including environmental restoration measures of success. Integrate corporate sector interests and capabilities with natural resource project needs.
  • Lead projects to combine military salvage, civilian agency diving, liability experts and tribal natural resource representatives to address environmental cleanup needs. Provide mission scope and advise U.S. agency participation is joint U.S./Canada cleanup operations the Pacific Northwest.

Implementing Effective Project Management

  • Conduct strategic planning efforts for federal and private sector clients. Analyze program performance and provide recommendations on remedies to structural program challenges.
  • Develop scopes of work, budgets, manage contracts and prepare briefings for clients. Prepare Requests for Proposals and respond to grant proposals on behalf of clients. Manage employees and direct subcontractors. Staff political and senior career Administration and White House leadership on multi-agency environmental initiatives.
  • Prepare multi-agency crosscutting wetlands budget analysis for the Council on Environmental Quality and the Office of Management and Budget in the Executive Office of the President.
  • Coordinate regional restoration and protection planning efforts and environmental education projects. Serve as project manager for a host of multi agency projects across the nation addressing coastal resource restoration and projection. Advise the Port of Baltimore and the US Army Corps of Engineers through the Poplar Island site development process.
  • Develop political and procedural steps for fisheries trade associations’ representation at the U.S. International Trade Commission.

Harnessing Technologies to Address Environmental Issues

  • Review emerging military technologies for their applicability in resource conservation.
  • Convene a multi-agency team project that seeks to align government agency expertise and operational capabilities from NOAA, Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Air Force, Army, Navy, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), US Coast Guard, Lockheed Martin (Skunk Works and other divisions) and environmental NGOs to locate, develop and deploy appropriate technologies such as laser radar to locate derelict fishing gear at sea.
  • Provide the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers New York District with GIS based analysis of NOAA Fisheries trawl survey data to highlight areas of denser biological usage as a proxy for areas deserving greatest environmental projection (ESRI annual meeting proceedings 1998).  Use exclusion mapping techniques to determine where dredged material island creation should not occur in New York Harbor and the New York Bight.

Planning for a Changing Climate

  • Conduct original research for U.S. EPA on Mid-Atlantic coastal communities’ plans to adapt to rising seas. Publish results in peer reviewed scientific literature.
  • Conduct media and congressional outreach on findings resulting in coverage in major media. 
  • Collaborate with the Union of Concerned Scientists on issues concerning EPA scientists’ lack of ability to release findings and communicate directly with the media.

Protecting International Natural Resources

  • Conceive plans to align U.S. military interests in theater awareness training with needs of natural resource managers to instigate partnerships with multiple counties in Southeast Asia, particularly the Coral Reef Triangle.
  • Plan for the detection and removal of marine debris in open-ocean conditions to avoid international debris impacts to U.S. resources. Review use of fish attraction devices by international fisheries, particularly the Pacific fleet tuna fishery, and their role in marine debris accumulation in the Hawaiian Islands. 
  • Brief Canadian government on marine debris problems in the Pacific, including preliminary theories on domestic and international sources of derelict fishing gear. 

Reviewing Environmental, Immigration, and Food Labeling Laws, Treaties and Regulations

  • Analyze and provide briefings on a wide range of legislation for federal, state and private sector clients on a wide range of topics and specific bills covering fisheries, oceans and atmospheric topics, and climate issues, as well as labor and food labeling and immigration legislation.

• University of Charleston/Medical University of South Carolina joint program in Environmental Science. Master of Science. 1998.
• University of Wisconsin-Madison. Institute for Environmental Studies. 1994-1996.
• The College of William and Mary. Government and Philosophy double major. Bachelor of Arts. 1992.

Work History
1998-present        Principal, W.H. Nuckols Consulting
1998-2000            Ecologist, Gahagan and Bryant Associates
1996-1998            Habitat Ecologist/SC Sea Grant Fellow, NOAA Coastal Services Center
1994-1996            Manager/Database Manager, Williamson Bike Works
1991-1993            Manager, The Open Road
1987-1991            Lab Technician, Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS)
Adjunct Positions:
2011-present        U.S. Director for National and International Partnerships, 3-11 Tsunami, an Eco-Tan initiative
2010- present       Military Liaison, California State Coastal Conservancy
2010- present       Director for Public Affairs, Team 4MIL (Wounded Warrior Project)
2009- present       Executive Director, Eco-Tan (environmental education non-profit NGO)
2008- present       Director for Policy and Environment, Man-in-the-Sea Memorial Project
2008-2009           Military Projects Coordinator, U.S. Department of Commerce/NOAA
2000-2009            Project Coordinator and Military Liaison, Coastal America
2003-2008            Senior Scientist, Coastal America Foundation


“Maryland.” In James G. Titus and Daniel Hudgens (editors). The Likelihood of Shore Protection along the Atlantic Coast of the United States. Volume 1: Mid-Atlantic. Nuckols, W.H., P. Johnston, D. Hudgens, and J.G. Titus. 2010. Report to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Washington, D.C.
• “Government’s plan for development of most land vulnerable to rising sea along U.S.
Atlantic Coast.”  J. G. Titus, D. E. Hudgens, W. H. Nuckols, M. Craghan, D. L. Trescott,
J. A. Alexander, M Cela, W Clark , C H Hershner, A Hickok, J  Kassakian, C J  Linn,
T M McCue, J Tanski, and J. Wang. Environmental Research Letters, 2009. 
• “Is the scale of your coral problem resulting in project paralysis?  Unusual partners may be the solution.” W. Nuckols. Proceedings of the 2008 International Coral Reef Symposium.
• “Conserving America’s Wetlands: Implementing the President’s Goal.” Council on Environmental Quality, Executive Office of the President, April 2008.
• “How to build project support by engaging the media.”  W. Nuckols. “Lessons learned from the field:  You can’t do it alone.” Proceedings of Coastal Zone 07.  2007.
• “Conserving America’s Wetlands: Implementing the President’s Goal.” Council on Environmental Quality, Executive Office of the President, April 2005.
• “DOD’S Innovative Readiness Training Program: Matching Military Training with the needs of Coastal Communities.”  W. Nuckols. Proceedings of the Coastal Zone Management Conference. 2005.
• “What Can America Learn from How Maryland Is Responding to Coastal Erosion
and Rising Sea Level?”  J. Titus and W. Nuckols. Proceedings of the 13th Biennial Coastal Zone Conference Baltimore, MD. 2003.
• “Planning for Sea Level Rise Along the Maryland Shore.” W. Nuckols. Proceedings of the 12th Biennial Coastal Zone Conference, 2001
• “Success Measurers for Aquatic Habitat Restoration.” Ken Turgeon, W. Nuckols and P. Sheehy. Coastal Zone Management Conference. 2001.
• “GIS and High Precision GPS for the Collection and Documentation of Vegetation Data.” Proceedings of the 2001 ESRI Annual Users Conference.
• “Restoring Shellfish Beds with Dredged Material in NY/NJ Harbor. Beneficial Uses of Dredged Material for Habitat Creation, Enhancement and Restoration in NY/NJ Harbor.” DRAFT. February 1999.
• “Building Artificial Reefs with Dredged Material in NY/NJ Harbor and the New York Bight.  Beneficial Uses of Dredged Material for Habitat Creation, Enhancement and Restoration in NY/NJ Harbor.” DRAFT. February 1999.
• “Improving Coastal Management Decisions Using a GIS and NMFS Survey Data.”
W. Nuckols. 1998. Proceedings of the 1998 ESRI Annual Users Conference.

Papers/Reports/Professional Presentations:
—Value of Navy Lands in the in the Chesapeake Mid-Bay Region: Bloodsworth Island – a vanishing ecological and military resource. International Tidal Wetlands Conference: Beneficial Use of Dredged Materials to Restore Chesapeake Bay Wetlands. Salisbury University. June 2006.
—A Plan for the Recovery of the Artificial Tire Reef in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Produced for the NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service SE Region and the NOAA Marine Debris Program. William Nuckols and Terry Gray. December 2006.
—How to Get the Military to Assist with Your Restoration Project: The DoD Innovative Readiness Training (IRT) Program. The 3rd National Conference on Coastal and Estuarine Habitat Restoration: Forging the National Imperative. December 2006.
—What Can America Learn from How Maryland Is Responding to Coastal Erosion
and Rising Sea Level?  Coastal Zone Conference.  2003.
—The 1996 Reauthorization of the Magnuson Fisheries Conservation and Management Act: Issues and Implementation, March, 1997.
—Mitigation Banking: The Responsible Use of a New Management Tool. 1997.

Awards and Recognition:
•Coastal America 2008 Partnership Award, an award presented on behalf of Barack Obama, President of the United States, for leadership in the Florida Artificial Tire Reef Cleanup project.
•US Army Corps of Engineers “Gold Coin” presented by USACE Deputy Assistant Secretary Doug Lamont for services provided for the Festival Park restoration project in Manteo, NC.
•Letter of gratitude from Congressman Rick Larsen, for 2005 project that trained Navy divers to remove derelict fishing nets from Puget Sound.
•Letter recognizing outstanding commitment and dedication from the Chesapeake Bay Seafood Industries Association.

SSI Open Water Diver certified





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W.H. Nuckols Consulting is located on Capitol Hill, Washington, DC and has led projects throughout the continental U.S. and in the Pacific Islands

William Nuckols, Principal
202-484-1390 ; 443-994-1493 cell/blackberry

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