Partners of the Year


The Medicine Bow Conservation District was named the 2023 WWNRT "Partner of the Year" at the regular meeting  of the WWNRT Board on Tuesday.  In making the announcement, Board Chair Steve Meadows said, "the district was singled out for significant accomplishments in river restoration, Greater Sage-grouse habitat improvements, fence modification and water development, and other large, landscape-scale efforts to maintain mule deer, antelope, songbird and other habitats in central Wyoming."

"This is especially noteworthy because this is not a district that has a great deal of financial resources at their disposal," Meadows said.  "These folks get a lot done with a little, and they do that by being effective and enthusiastic partners with a lot of other agencies and landowners."

Board member Mike Massie also applauded the choice, saying, "as the board member who has done most of these site visits over the past few years, it is really refreshing to see the commitment to conservation in this very special part of Wyoming."

Pictured with the board are former MBCD Manager Joan McGraw, current MBCD Manager Kristin Tilley, MBCD Chairman Owen Williams and MBCD board member Kay Schrock.

Kevin Monteith

WWNRT 2022 Partner of the Year  

University of Wyoming professor, Kevin Monteith, was named the 2022 Partner of the Year by the Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust on Tuesday in Thermopolis.  Monteith has worked with the WWNRT on numerous projects in Wyoming in the past decade, and was singled out for excellence in applied research that allows the board to more effectively improve habitats and conditions for wildlife.

Board Chair Kim Floyd, Cheyenne, presented the award, noting that Monteith’s work on mule deer, elk, bighorn sheep and moose provided a roadmap to effective habitat improvements throughout the state.

“Kevin has taught us a lot, and through his work and insight, we have been able to make some massive strides in management and improvement of conditions for multiple species,” Floyd said.

WWNRT Director Bob Budd added that Monteith’s work “has real world applications – through the understanding we can gain from his work on nutrition, disease, and all other aspects of animal behavior, we are able to more effectively leverage the assets of the state.”

Budd and Floyd cited work in the Wyoming Range, Sweetwater County, the Wind River and Absaroka Mountains, and most recently, the Bighorn Basin and central Wyoming as examples of excellence.

Dave Kimble

WWNRT 2021 Partner of the Year

David Kimble, Field Biologist with the U.S Fish and Wildlife Partners for Fish and Wildlife program was named the 2021 "Partner of the Year" by the Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust on Monday.  This is an annual honor bestowed on an individual or organization to recognize outstanding conservation achievement on the ground in Wyoming.  The Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust has allocated more than $107 million to projects statewide in the past 15 years, with an actual on-the-ground cost of more than $750 million.

Kimble was recognized for his work in southwestern Wyoming, primarily in the areas of wetland development and river restoration.

"Dave Kimble has become one of the real leaders in our work in Wyoming," said Board Chair Kim Floyd.  "His fingerprints are on major rivers, small streams, wetlands and other areas, and dozens of wildlife species are the beneficiary of his commitment and dedication."

In addition, Board members cited his ability to work with people of highly diverse backgrounds and bring multiple interests together on large-scale, ecosystem-based conservation efforts.  These include local governments, conservation districts, state wildlife agencies, landowners, conservation organizations and others.

"Dave is easy-going and very, very knowledgable," said WWNRT Director Bob Budd.  "He brings a lot to the table for everyone, and he does it in a manner that is inclusive and non-confrontational.  He gets stuff done - done well and done fast."

Amy Anderson

2020 WWNRT Partner of the Year

Amy Anderson, Wildlife Habitat Biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department in Lander, was named the "Partner of the Year" for 2020 by the Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust at a presentation before the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission in Thermopolis last week.

In making the presentation, WWNRT Executive Director Bob Budd said that while many partners make projects work on the ground, "it takes someone who can be a catalyst, a designer, a dreamer and a doer.  That describes Amy Anderson to a tee."

Budd said Anderson has worked with the Trust on numerous projects over the past 15 years, but was singled out particularly for her work to reduce conifer encroachment and enhance aspen habitats in central Wyoming.

"Aspen habitats are one of the most important to a huge variety of species in Wyoming and the northern rockies," Budd said, "and Amy has impacted thousands of acres in multiple counties.  This is a huge boost for a habitat type that needs help and attention."

The Director pointed out that the efforts were not always easy, with partners getting on and off point, but "Amy wouldn't quit.  That made her a unanimous selection this year."

Ian Tator

2019 WWNRT Partner of the Year

Congratulations to Ian Tator, Statewide Habitat Manager for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.  Ian was named WWNRT's 2019 Partner of the Year at the August Board Meeting in Riverton on August 23.  Ian has been instrumental in assisting and organizing many WWNRT projects throughout the years and was recognized for his dedication.    Thank you, Ian!!

Leah Burgess 

WWNRT 2018 Partner of the Year

The WWNRT Board of Directors are pleased to announce that Leah Burgess, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation,  was chosen as the 2018 Partner of the Year at the August Board meeting.  Leah has been instrumental in assisting WWNRT with many projects, including the Wapiti Ridge Conservation Easement, which was finalized in 2017. Congratulations, and many thanks. Leah, for your hard work and dedication!

Richard Garrett

WWNRT 2017 Partner of the Year   

Richard was honored at the August 2017 WWNRT Board Meeting in Saratoga in appreciation of his continued  hard work and support for conservation in Wyoming. 

Board Chair Kim Floyd, Cheyenne, said, "Richard is constantly promoting the work we do, but equally looking for partners and potential projects throughout the State of Wyoming." 

Floyd highlighted easement and habitat work, as well as legislative and regulatory efforts, and in particular, partnering and promotional opportunities.   Saying "it seems nothing ever gets past Richard," Floyd explained Garrett's passion and continual efforts to assure the work of the WWNRT is recognized.

"Like many of our past recipients, Richard works behind the scenes, and really gets things done in a completely selfless manner."

Garrett, who serves as the Director of External Affairs for The Nature Conservancy, was singled out for his continued and varying assistance to the habitat and natural resource enhancement mission of the WWNRT.  

Jill Randall

WWNRT 2016 Partner of the Year  

The Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust named Jill Randall, Pinedale, their 2016 Partner of the Year on Tuesday.  The award is given annually to one group or individual for exemplary conservation work in Wyoming.

"Jill Randall is the epitome of conservation in western Wyoming," Board Chair Kim Floyd, Cheyenne, said in presenting the award. "She has been a consistent partner of ours since the inception of the trust, and the footprint of her work covers hundreds of thousands of acres, with dozens of different partners."

Randall, who is a regional habitat specialist with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, was cited for her work in the Wyoming Range, particularly prescribed fire, mechanical treatments, research, and invasive species control to enhance habitat for mule deer.  In addition, the WWNRT recognized her efforts to enhance and conserve habitat for Greater Sage-grouse, elk, moose, and other iconic species in western Wyoming.

Board Vice-Chair Steve Meadows, Jackson, said, "Jill's enthusiasm and energy is infectious.  You get out in the field with her, and you see so much potential and so much accomplishment that you want to turn her loose on the rest of the world." Meadows also lauded her ability to bring diverse groups together for a common cause.  "She works well with everyone," he said. "You'll have landowners, conservation groups, state and federal agencies all sharing in the effort and the results, and that is exactly the kind of energy we need to get things done in Wyoming."

Predictably, Randall gave credit for the many successes in the area to her many partners.

"I have the great fortune to work with so many great landowners, biologists, habitat ecologist and others that this stuff is really fun." she said.

Randall began her career with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department in 2003, working as a feedground biologist in Jackson.  She has spent the last nine years as a terrestrial habitat biologist in Pinedale.

August 2013 - Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust Presents 'Partner of the Year'  award

The Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust named the Wyoming Stock Growers Land Trust as ‘Partner of the Year’ for 2013 at their meeting last week in Big Piney...

Read press release here