John Robert Love (1953-2019)
Bob Love began his career with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) in 1981 as a Wildlife Specialist for the Wildlife Division in Baton Rouge. Early in his career he worked with many game species, nuisance wildlife species, and species of special concern, including alligators.
After working on all state Wildlife Management Areas (WAMs) throughout the Florida Parishes, Bob was promoted through the biologist ranks to serve as Biologist Program Manager for nine years. He served his 18 remaining years of his career in the Coastal and Nongame Resources Division. Bob retired April of 2016 as the Coastal and Nongame Resources Division Administrator who oversaw the Alligator Management Program, Furbearer Management (including the Coast-wide Nutria Control Program), Louisiana's Wildlife Action Plan, the Natural and Scenic Rivers Program, the Louisiana Natural Heritage Program, Oil Spill Response and Natural Resource Damage Assessment, plus Coastal Operations including management of 10 Wildlife Management Areas and Refuges, along with White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area in Vermilion Parish.
Most importantly, Bob took the lead with the whooping crane re-population effort and provided the vision to start and sustain the project. He initially secured the approval for the Whooping Crane Reintroduction Project to begin by proposing a funding model which has a value-added component utilizing privately raised funds. He also led efforts to define the entire boundary of Louisiana as a non-essential, experimental population status with the Department of Interior. Bob directed fundraising to gather resources, additional to state and federal dollars, to make the project financially stable during the formative years.
A memorial fund in Bob's honor has been set up to help support the Whooping Crane Reintroduction Project that was so close to his heart.