Secretary Salazar appoints Craig residents to BLM advisory board

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Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar recently announced five appointments to the Bureau of Land Management’s Northwest Colorado Resource Advisory Council, a board that advises the BLM on area public land issues.

Three Craig residents were among the appointments. The three Craig appointees are Wes McStay, Dan Davidson, and Jeff Comstock, who is a re-appointment.

The Northwest Colorado RAC includes 15 members with “diverse interests and backgrounds,” and is one of three such BLM councils in Colorado, according to a news release.

“The BLM’s Resource Advisory Councils exemplify the collaborative approach taken by the BLM in handling public land issues,” Salazar said in the release. “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.”

Other appointees to the Northwest Colorado RAC are Patrick Kennedy, of Grand Junction, and Barbara Vaszquez, of Cowdrey.

The news release included biographical information on the three local appointees.

McStay is a career rancher in Moffat County who represents grazing interests. He has been in active in natural resource and public land issues in Northwest Colorado for many years. He has worked closely with the BLM’s Little Snake Field Office on its resource management plan revision through his involvement with the independent Northwest Colorado Stewardship. He has also been active in working groups for sage grouse and sharp-tailed grouse.

Davidson is the director of the Museum of Northwest Colorado and represents archaeology and cultural interests. He has been active in the museum since the 1980s, when he served on the Moffat County Museum Board. He has been the museum director since 1990.

He has also served on the Craig Improvement Committee, Colorado Preservation, Inc., and the Moffat County Tourism Association. The museum works closely with the BLM and is a repository for archeological items found on state and private lands.

Comstock is the director of Moffat County natural resources. He has served on the Northwest Colorado RAC since 2001, and spent two years as chairman. He was recently elected chairman of Club 20, a Western Slope lobbying group. He has also been active in the Northwest Colorado Stewardship.

BLM Director Bob Abbey said RAC members are vital to the BLM.

“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,” he said in the release.

BLM Colorado State Director Helen Hankins echoed Abbey’s sentiments on the importance of the RAC.

“BLM Colorado’s Resource Advisory Councils are one of the best opportunities for the public to communicate with the BLM upper management,” she said in the release. “Our new and reappointed RAC members will have an important role to play as we move forward over the next three years.”

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