Custer, South Dakota, – Two employees on the Black Hills National Forest recently received National recognition and awards for superior performance in their fields.
Justin McConkey, Range Management Staff Officer, Hell Canyon Ranger District, received the National Rangeland Management Award. McConkey has worked on numerous projects to improve range conditions including an Elk Mountain Water Development project that provided better water distribution for cattle grazing and wildlife. He has also built strong working relationships with permittees and other partners.
“Justin has shown strong leadership and knowledge of rangeland management for the Hell Canyon District range program,” said Tracy Anderson, Hell Canyon District Ranger. “He takes tremendous pride in ensuring our range lands are managed to standard and ‘gets down in the dirt’ working with our permittees. His dedication, honest approach and ability to listen has resulted in buy-in from his staff and our partners. This National award and recognition is well deserved.”
Black Hills National Forest Silviculturist Blaine Cook, Supervisor’s Office, recently received the Presidential Field Forester award from the Society of American Foresters.
The Presidential Field Foresters Award recognizes foresters who have dedicated their professional careers to the application of forestry on the ground using sound scientific methods and adaptive management strategies. The award is presented to individuals who have displayed uncommon talent, skill, and innovative methods to achieve a record of excellence in the application of forest management.
“Blaine is a great asset to the Black Hills National Forest. All those that work with Blaine know he is very knowledgeable and experienced when it comes to managing our forest health and vegetation management challenges here on the Forest. We are glad to have him on our team,” said Brian Jackson, Natural Resources Staff Officer, Black Hills National Forest.
For more information on the Black Hills National Forest, visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/blackhills.