Jim Kenna, the newly appointed State Director for California, has joined the California State Office leaving his position as State Director in Arizona. As BLM California’s new State Director, Kenna will be involved in the many issues the BLM faces in managing the 15.2 million acres it is responsible for in California and northwest Nevada.
Kenna began his federal career as a wildland firefighter with the U.S. Forest Service in Prescott, Arizona. He previously served in numerous key agency positions, including Associate State Director in Oregon, Deputy Assistant Director for Resources and Planning in Washington, D.C., Budget Analyst for the Department of Interior in Washington, D.C., and Field Manager of the BLM’s Palm Springs Field Office in California. He was BLM’s Arizona State Director from January 2009 to September 2011.
While working in the federal government, Kenna contributed his leadership and planning to many important initiatives and conservation efforts. He provided his leadership in establishing Service First and Stewardship Contracting initiatives and in coordinating federal, state and local land use planning processes balancing community needs, water rights and conservation of multiple species in southern California.
During his time as Palm Springs Field Manager, he worked with communities and tribes leading to the establishment of the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument, and worked with the Border Area Fire Council in San Diego to address international border security, fire response, public safety and ecological issues.
He also coordinated a national conservation strategy for sagebrush habitats with Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and the Western Governors Association.
Kenna has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Prescott College in Arizona. When not at work, Kenna enjoys spending time with his wife and two sons hiking, rafting, reading and enjoying music.