H. Ken Cordell, PhD
Pioneering Scientist and Project Leader
USDA Forest Service Research and Development
Dr. Cordell is Project Leader and Pioneering Scientist in Forest Service Research attached to the Southern Research Station and is located on the University of Georgia Campus in Athens, Georgia. His work covers trends and futures of outdoor recreation (especially nature-based), demographic and societal trends, natural amenity migration and amenity values, and public land use and values (especially Wilderness and other protected lands). He has produced five books, the latest entitled The Multiple Values of Wilderness. He is a lead scientist for the U. S. National Survey on Recreation and the Environment, a survey begun by the Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission in 1960. Dr Cordell has authored over 315 scientific and other technical papers dealing with Americans’ relationship with their natural lands, for both national and international audiences.
Dr. Cordell earned his PhD in Economics and Natural Resources Policy at N.C. State University. He was recipient of the Forest Service Chief’s national award as Distinguished Scientist of the Year. He is an elected fellow with the Academy of Leisure Sciences and has served on a variety of national and international committees and boards. In 2006 he was appointed Pioneering Scientist, the most distinguished appointment a Forest Service scientist can receive, one of six in the history of the Forest Service. He is a member of an elite on-going national team of scientists who are responsible for assessing the status and trends in the country’s forest and rangeland resources nationwide. He is the lead scientist for the recreation, tourism, and nature values indicators for producing the 2010 Nation’s Report as the U.S. contribution to the international Montreal Process.
Dr. Cordell is viewed by his agency as the national authority in his field. In his previous professional affiliation he was a faculty member at North Carolina State University and currently holds adjunct professor status with 5 other universities. He serves on masters and doctoral graduate committees. He is an active advocate for protecting natural ecosystems of and for responsible public access to public lands. His most recent work has been on behalf of Jekyll Island State Park on the coast of Georgia.