The Bureau of Land Management Names Doug Vilsack as Colorado State Director

Will oversee 8.3 million surface acres of public lands and 27 million acres of subsurface mineral estate


Bureau of Land Management

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The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today named Doug Vilsack, the current Assistant Director for Parks, Wildlife and Lands for Colorado’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR), as the new State Director for BLM Colorado. Vilsack will begin work on August 14th, 2022.

“Doug Vilsack knows the people and lands of Colorado, with over 15 years of experience in the natural resources and energy fields, including roles in the public, private and non-profit sectors. He has worked collaboratively with Coloradans, the BLM and other government agencies, and conservationists and industry groups on a wide range of land management issues in the state. We’re so pleased he has agreed to bring that expertise and the relationships he has built over decades to lead the BLM’s work in Colorado,” BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning said.

As the BLM Colorado State Director, Vilsack will be responsible for overseeing the management of 8.3 million acres of public lands and more than 27 million acres of Federal sub-surface mineral estate ranging from alpine tundra, colorful canyons, and sagebrush steppe to mountains rising more than 14,000 feet above sea level. Most of the public lands BLM manages in the state are concentrated on Colorado’s Western Slope.

Vilsack comes to the BLM from Colorado’s DNR, where since 2019 he has had the responsibility to recommend, develop, negotiate, and communicate policy positions that impact parks, wildlife, and lands throughout the state. Prior to becoming Assistant Director, he served as Director of Legislative Affairs at the Colorado DNR. Before going to work for the state, Vilsack was an attorney handling water, energy, mining, and public lands cases. Vilsack also founded and led several non-profit organizations, including the Posner Center for International Development, a network of Colorado-based businesses and organizations addressing global poverty, and worked to establish distribution networks for household solar products on the Navajo Nation and in rural Africa.

Vilsack replaces Stephanie Connolly, who served as acting Colorado State Director and will return to her role as BLM Colorado’s Acting Associate State Director.

Vilsack has a law degree from the University of Colorado Boulder and a bachelor's degree in Environmental Systems: Natural Resource Management from Colorado College in Colorado Springs.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.