In The Spotlight
Utah Eagle Scout Receives the BLM's 2013 "Making a Difference" National Volunteer Award
On Thursday, May 23, 2013, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) presented its prestigious “Making a Difference” National Volunteer Awards to four individuals, one couple, one group, and one BLM employee for outstanding volunteer service or volunteer leadership on BLM-managed lands.
The Making a Difference Award is an annual honor presented by the BLM to recognize the Bureau’s most exceptional volunteers, whose efforts include trail repair, visitor services, habitat restoration, and many other duties. The award was presented to recipients at a recognition event via a live video conference hosted at the BLM headquarters in Washington, D.C. The event included remarks from Sally Jewell, Secretary of the Interior; Neil Kornze, Principal Deputy Director of the BLM; and Carl Rountree, Assistant Director for the BLM’s National Landscape Conservation System and Community Partnerships.
Joshua Barlow, an Eagle Scout from Price, Utah, was selected as a national volunteer award recipient. When 14-year-old Josh Barlow decided to complete an Eagle Scout project, he contacted the BLM-Utah Price Field Office for ideas. Josh chose to enhance the Gordon Creek Trail, near his home town of Price, Utah. The trail crosses BLM-managed lands, and a Wildlife Management Area administered by the Utah State Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR). Josh built a fence in front of an historic cabin, installed signs along the trail, and fixed washed-out trail segments. Josh coordinated with the BLM and DWR staff, presented his project plans at a public recreation meeting, and found outside donors like the Utah Off-Highway Vehicle Program for materials.
Josh personally contributed more than 56 hours to the project, with additional time devoted to project preparation and obtaining materials. Josh’s project volunteers performed 658 hours of labor with an estimated value of more than $15,000.
Associate State Director, Jenna Whitlock, praised Josh for his outstanding work, commitment, and his “over-achieving” accomplishments. “He’s an extraordinary young man. It was an honor for me to recognize Josh for this prestigious national award.”
In Fiscal Year 2012, more than 30,000 volunteers contributed more than 1.1 million hours of their time in assisting the BLM. That is the equivalent of 637 “work years.” The value of volunteer contributions as compared to project-related dollars expended by the BLM was 26 to 1.
The BLM manages nearly 22.9 million acres of public lands in Utah, representing about 42 percent of the state. Located mostly in western and southeastern Utah, these lands are varied, ranging from rolling uplands to sprawling desert lowlands. Utah’s public lands feature some of the most spectacular scenery in the world, from the snow-capped peaks of remote mountain ranges to colorful red-rock canyons.
The BLM’s first national monument is also located on public lands in Utah. Situated in beautiful red-rock country, the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument encompasses nearly 1.9 million acres in the south-central part of the state. The area offers a unique combination of archaeological, historical, paleontological, geological, and biological resources.
BLM Utah manages public lands for a variety of uses. These lands not only provide minerals, energy, and livestock forage, but also natural, historical and cultural resources that the agency is charged with protecting. In addition, Utah’s public lands offer incomparable opportunities to experience solitude and enjoy outdoor recreation.
Bureau of Land Management
Utah State Office
440 West 200 South, Suite 500
Salt Lake City, Utah 84101-1345
Phone: (801) 539-4001
TDD: (801) 539-4133
Fax: (801) 539-4237