Bureau of Land Management Director Bob Abbey today presented the first-ever BLM Director’s Awards to agency employees for exceptional public service.
“These awards recognize outstanding leadership, dedicated stewardship, successful collaborative efforts, and innovative approaches that are making the Bureau of Land Management the premier natural and cultural resources management agency in the Department of the Interior,” said Abbey. “People are the BLM’s most valuable asset, and these awardees set superior examples for all of us to follow.”
The awardees are:
- Lynda Roush, Arcata Field Office, BLM-California, recipient of the Director’s Excellence Through Leadership Award
Ms. Roush has been instrumental in building and sustaining partnerships that help protect California's coastal resources and treasured landscapes managed by the BLM in the northernmost part of California. Her efforts have furthered the goals of the President’s America's Great Outdoors initiative, which supports innovative, community-level conservation efforts and helps reconnect Americans to the outdoors and their public lands.
- Kurt Heckeroth, Tillamook Field Office, BLM-Oregon, recipient of the Director’s Excellence Through Stewardship Award
Mr. Heckeroth facilitated a collaborative process between the BLM, state and local governments, and private groups to implement riparian restoration efforts in watersheds and streams feeding the Lower Columbia River and several northwest coastal bays. The resulting partnership produced the most enduring cooperative riparian restoration program since the signing of a multi-agency Memorandum of Understanding in 2002.
- Wild Horse and Burro Communications Team, recipient of the Director’s Team Accomplishment Award
The Wild Horse and Burro Communications Team was created to provide much-needed supplemental communications support to the Wild Horse and Burro Program. Team members regularly travel to often- remote areas where wild horse and burro gathers are scheduled to occur. There they provide invaluable assistance to the local BLM field offices, helping out with all aspects of communications – before, during, and after the gather.
- Jeff Christenson, Challis Field Office, BLM-Idaho, recipient of the Director’s Spirit of Service Award
Mr. Christenson manages the BLM-Idaho Challis Field Office recreation program, the success of which is directly attributable to his diligence and initiative. In addition, his extensive community involvement outside of the field office serves people throughout the Challis Field Office area. Whether participating in a local trails group, umpiring Little League games, or promoting fundraisers for local Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Mr. Christenson epitomizes the spirit of public service.
- Toya Baker, BLM-Oregon State Office, recipient of the Director’s Diversity Award
Ms. Baker demonstrated exemplary initiative when she used her extensive skills to develop, train, and educate the BLM-Oregon workforce on diversity and inclusion. Her innovative accomplishments include promoting diversity by creating a SharePoint site dedicated to linking managers and selecting officials with professional and civic organizations through which they can recruit knowledgeable and diverse talent.
- Ely District, BLM-Nevada State Office, recipient of the Director’s Safety Award
The BLM-Nevada Ely District uses proactive safety training to promote employee awareness and employee involvement at all levels. The Ely District management team leads by example, sets reasonable safety expectations, and clearly communicates safety goals to employees.
The BLM manages more land – more than 245 million acres – than any other Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The Bureau, with a budget of about $1 billion, also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on public lands.