Wild Horse and Burro Operations Chief
Ridgecrest Regional Wild Horse and Burro Corrals
Ridgecrest Field Office
Who would have thought a person from New Jersey would become a wild horse and burro corral manager out West? But when Art DiGrazia was young, he had a love for horses and took on an after-school job cleaning stables near his home in Plainfield, New Jersey.
As a young man, Art joined the Marine Corps and was stationed at Camp Pendleton. After his regular duties, he spent time at the base stables and rodeo grounds and eventually was made the non-commissioned officer in charge of the facility. When he was released from the Marine Corps, he was hired as a civilian at the stables. Later, he became a humane officer for the San Diego Humane Society and was called to handle a case involving wild horses. When the case was concluded , BLM offered him a position. That was in 1977. He worked as a wrangler for eleven years capturing, preparing, and adopting out wild horses in the California Desert District. At first it was with a memoradum of understanding with the Camp Pendleton stables, where he had previously worked. Through that MOU, he helped establish an adoption corral in Redlands, California. They later moved the facility to Ridgecrest where he helped build the corrals for the BLM, Navy and National Park Service animals.
Art left Ridgecrest in 1988 to take a position as a wild horse and burro program specialist in the Eastern States, Milwaukee Field Office. He was promoted to the supervisor position and managed adoptions in 20 states from Missouri to Maine, adopting thousands of horses during his 12 years in Milwaukee. He spent another four years as the facility manager of the Salt Lake Regional Wild Horse and Burro Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. He returned to California as the corral manager in December of last year. Art oversees the care and well being of over 1,000 wild horses and burros at the corral facility, which includes supervising several wranglers, a compliance specialist and staff assistant. He also oversees all adoptions in the Desert District.
Art lives in Ridgecrest with his wife Julie. Their son, Michael is attending Westminister College in Salt Lake City.