Ray works to conserve pollinators on rangelands in the central U.S., and he also serves as a Partner Biologist for the USDA-NRCS. He is based at the NRCS Field Office in Stillwater, Oklahoma. One focus of his work is to assist in the planning and implementation of monarch butterfly conservation efforts in Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Ray began studying the effects of fire and grazing on prairie plant and butterfly communities in 2004, and earned his Ph.D. in natural resource ecology and management from Oklahoma State University in 2010. Prior to joining the Xerces Society, he worked for The Nature Conservancy in Florida, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in California, Iowa State University, and Oklahoma State University.