Recent Illinois transplant, Diane Simpson, a 26 year U.S.. Forest Service veteran, is the outdoor recreation planner for the Bakersfield Field Office.
With a bachelor's degree in forest resource management from Southern Illinois University, Diane began working for the U.S Forest Service Eastern Region in natural resources, including recreation and trail program management in Shawnee National Forest and Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie.
She met her future husband, Dana, on a fire detail. He lived in Bakersfield, so they decided she would relocate to California. Fortunately, she was able to get a 3 month detail to the Angeles National Forest, which lead to to a permanent position in the summer of 2005. She commuted from Bakersfield to Angeles NF for six months. When the recreation planner position opened with BLM in Bakersfield she applied. She started working for BLM in January 2006.
She enjoys the diverse nature the Bakersfield office affords with opportunities to be involved with projects at Keyesville, Carrizo Plain National Monument, Piedras Blancas Lightstation, North Fork of the Kaweah River and many others.
Since she is new to BLM, Diane quips her greatest achievement is learning the differences between sub-activity codes, program elements, project codes and budget object classes.
Diane says she loves to travel and recently returned from a trip to the Isle of Man, Scotland, England and France. She also loves motorcycle riding, bicycling and crafts.
Diane's husband recently retired from the Kern County Fire Department and is currently serving as the logistics section chief on a fire type I team. Her eldest son will be attending college in Illinois this fall while her teenage daughter and youngest son adjust to schools in Bakersfield.