Veteran Public Land Manager Steven Cohn Named BLM Alaska State Director

Will oversee 70 million surface acres of public lands and 220 million acres of subsurface mineral estate


Bureau of Land Management

BLM Office:

Alaska State Office

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Lesli Ellis-Wouters
Man standing in front of tree
Steven Cohn has been named the new state director for the BLM Alaska State Office. Cohn is a veteran of BLM Alaska, having served most recently as the Deputy State Director for Resources in 2018. BLM photo.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has named public land manager Steven Cohn as the new Director of the Alaska State Office in Anchorage. 

BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning announced the appointment noting “Steve brings 27 years of professional and academic natural resource management experience to his new role. He is a highly skilled and respected policy expert on Alaska public land and resources issues and his expertise will benefit the BLM and Alaska constituencies we serve.” 

As BLM’s Alaska State Director, Cohn will be responsible for overseeing the management of 70 million surface acres and 220 million acres of Federal sub-surface mineral estate. He will also oversee 650 permanent staff and approximately 200 seasonal employees who help manage a myriad of public land uses and resources to include the Federal Subsistence Management Program, the Alaska Land Transfer Program, the National Petroleum Reserve and oversight of the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline System. He will rejoin the BLM by the end of May. 

Cohn is returning to the BLM from The Nature Conservancy where he was the Alaska State Director since 2018. His career in federal service began with the Bureau of Land Management more than two decades ago as a presidential management fellow. Before he left in 2018, he was BLM Alaska’s Deputy State Director for Resources. He held many other important assignments throughout the west in his tenure at the BLM including Utah Associate State Director (acting), Division Chief for the National Landscape Conservation System and the Branch Chief (acting), Planning and NEPA. Cohn was also a field manager at BLM’s Hassayampa Field Office in Phoenix, AZ and an assistant field manager in Prineville, OR and Tucson, AZ. 

Cohn holds a bachelor’s degree in government from Harvard University and advanced degrees from the University of California at Berkeley College of Natural Resources. He lives with his family in Anchorage, Alaska, where he enjoys fishing, hiking and paddling rivers in remote sections of the state.  

Cohn replaces Tom Heinlein, who served as acting director and will return to his permanent role as BLM Anchorage District Manager. 

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.