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Montana State Office
Release Date: 11/16/10
Contacts: Mary Apple 406-896-5258    

Secretary Salazar Announces New Appointments to BLM Resource Advisory Councils

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has announced new appointments or reappointments of 16 members to Montana’s three citizen-based Resource Advisory Councils (RACs), which advise the Bureau of Land Management on public land issues. The RACs are composed of members with diverse interests and backgrounds.

“The BLM’s Resource Advisory Councils exemplify the collaborative approach taken by the BLM in handling public land issues,” said Secretary Salazar. “I want to welcome our newly appointed RAC members and salute them for their commitment to public service. Their counsel will serve the BLM well as the agency works to ensure the health and productivity of America’s great outdoors.”

The RACs, composed of citizens chosen for their expertise in natural resource issues, help the BLM carry out its stewardship of 245 million acres – the largest land portfolio of any federal agency. The BLM has established 28 RACs across the West, where most BLM-managed land is located. Each RAC consists of 10 to 15 members with an interest in public land management, such as conservationists, outdoor recreationists, ranchers, tribal officials, state and local government officials, academics, and others.

BLM Director Bob Abbey said, “RAC members represent a variety of professional backgrounds and perspectives, and together bring a balanced outlook that the BLM needs in managing the public lands for multiple uses.”

“I’m looking forward to working with the Montana RACs and hearing the members’ perspectives on the various issues,” said new Montana/Dakotas State Director Jamie Connell. “And I’m grateful to all the RAC members who devote their time to assist us in public land management.”

The BLM, an agency of the Interior Department, is responsible for managing these various uses – such as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production – while conserving the land’s natural, historical, and cultural resources.

Below are the newly appointed or newly re-appointed members of Montana’s RACs and the date and place of their next meeting.
Western Montana RAC (December 9, Butte)
Ted Antonioli (energy and mineral development) new
Bob Walker (outdoor recreation) new
Michael Gibson (environmental) reappointment
Katherine Looney (dispersed recreation) new
Mark Sweeney (elected official) new
Sam Samson (public-at-large) reappointment
Central Montana RAC (December 7&8, Lewistown)
Wayne Fairchild (outdoor recreation) new
Hugo Tureck (environmental) new
Aart Dolman (environmental) new
James McCollem (public-at-large) new
Jon Moser (public-at-large) new
Eastern Montana RAC (December 2, Billings)
John Sterchi (federal grazing) new
Howard Boggess (historical interests) new
Bernard Rose (environmental) reappointment
Tim Lehman (academia) new
Harold Guse ( state agency representative) new

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Montana State Office   5001 Southgate Drive      Billings, MT 59101   

Last updated: 06-28-2012