Peter Williams, Ph.D.
Dr. Peter B. Williams is a blog contributor for the Academy. He is an independent management consultant, educator, and speaker with three decades of experience in community collaboration beginning with field projects in places as diverse as New England, the Mid-Atlantic States, south Florida, Texas, Utah, Colorado, and the northern Rocky Mountains.
He began his career working for the Appalachian Mountain Club’s Trails Program and then as an instructor for the Student Conservation Association's Wilderness Workskills Training Program. He has since worked on environmental policy and planning, Tribal and American Indian issues, wildlife and watershed management, recreation, and natural resource challenges.
Peter shares his extensive experience working across communities and cultures, engaging the right people at the right time on the right matters. Often, with contentious land management issues, when policies and interests are in conflict, the path forward requires seeing a problem from multiple perspectives. His expertise includes public land policy, science integration, strategic planning, and collaborative decision processes.
His work focuses on increasing the confidence of professionals inside and outside of public service to lead and support complex stakeholder collaboration, as well as organizational development and adaptation associated with contentious changes. As a trainer and subject matter expert (SME), Peter designs and delivers customized workshops, classroom, and webinar training for adult learners.
Peter’s twenty-year tenure in the federal workforce at executive level and line officer positions includes serving as Director of the US Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution and as Forest Supervisor for the Wayne National Forest. His long career in this challenging field offers particular insights in dealing with sensitive or contentious situations, especially when working with senior leaders, line officers, and senior staff.
His current areas of emphasis include managing landscapes collaboratively, administering and evaluating programs, and training and coaching individuals and teams at all organizational levels who want to work together in common cause.
He is a Senior Fellow with the Partnership for Public Service and a Visiting Fellow with the University of Montana. He holds a BA from Kenyon College, an MS from Virginia Tech, and a PhD from Utah State University. Additional training as a Professional Coach, program and project manager, and in facilitation and mediation help round out his background. Peter lives in Tucson, Arizona, with his wife Kathy.