November 20, 2007
Contact: Ann Boucher (406-896-5011)
BLM Names New Manager for Billings Field Office
A brief installation ceremony took place Nov. 20 at the BLM Montana State Office in Billings naming Jim Sparks as the new manager for the Bureau of Land Management’s Billings Field Office.
Born in Sheridan, Wyo., Sparks graduated from the University of Wyoming with a degree in Rangeland Science. He began his career with the BLM in 1986 in Cody, Wyo., as a range technician and in Rock Springs, Wyo., as a rangeland management specialist. In 1993, he transferred to Lewistown, Mont., to serve as the supervisory range conservationist. In 1999, he was selected as the district rangeland management specialist in Boise, Idaho. While there, he accepted an opportunity to become the assistant field manager for the Owyhee Field Office in Idaho, and also served in that capacity in Buffalo, Wyo., and Billings, Mont.
“Jim’s background and experience are a good fit for the Billings Field Office,” said State Director Gene Terland. “He’s familiar with this area and the issues facing public lands today. With his extensive background and strong leadership skills, Jim will be a great asset to Montana/Dakotas BLM.
Sparks replaces Sandy Brooks, who took a different job at the BLM Montana State Officeearlier this year.
Sparks and his wife, Ami, have one 10-year old child, Sam. His outside interests include fly fishing, fly tying, bow hunting, alpine skiing, and gardening.
The BLM Billings Field Office manages about 434,000 surface acres and 900,000 subsurface acres in eight counties in south-central Montana and in Big Horn County, Wyo. This includes Pompeys Pillar National Monument, the Pryor Mountain National Wild Horse Range, and the Shepherd Ah Nei Recreation Area. The office also administers grazing, archeological sites, and wildlife habitat, and works to reduce the danger of wildland fire in the wildland-urban interface.