Greg Sheehan, the Director of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, has been appointed as the Acting Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Service and will become a Deputy Director to the Senate-confirmed Director to be named later. This announcement was made by the Department of Interior.
“This is very exciting news for every sportsmen in America,” said SFW Founder Don Peay. “The USFWS can play a substantial role in the conservation of land, water and wildlife.”
Mr. Sheehan brings 25 years of wildlife management experience as well as exceptional leadership and managerial skills to the Department. He was appointed Director of Utah Wildlife Resources in 2012 and has worked to recover and expand Utah big game and other species and their habitats including mule deer, sage grouse, bighorn sheep, mountain goat, wild turkey and many native fish species.
Troy Justensen, CEO of SFW added, “It is exciting to now have such an avid, passionate hunter and angler in this position. Greg will be committed to getting the most out of the USFWS to help state game and fish agencies produce abundant game and fish. We could not be more pleased.”
Dave Woodhouse, Chairman of the SFW Board, said, “I don’t think sportsmen in the Midwest or east coast understand the role the USFWS has in western states’ big game hunting. Greg will be a tremendous welcome change that will benefit western states big game herds, waterfowl populations and strengthen the USFWS’s partnerships with sportsmen.”
Kevin Pritchett, Vice Chair of the SFW Board, and owner of King’s Camo, said, “The multi-billion dollar hunting and fishing industry depends on strong national leadership for conservation as well as pro-hunting and fishing agendas. Greg will be an incredible breath of fresh air to America’s sportsmen who contribute more than $1.1 billion to conservation annually through excise taxes on our outdoor gear.”
Utah’s abundant big game herds of Mule Deer, Elk, Bison, Moose, Mountain Goats, Desert Bighorn and Rocky Mountain Bighorn sheep, cougar, antelope and bear are world-renowned for their abundance and quality. These herds are the anchor for the hugely successful Western Hunting and Conservation Expo attended each year by more than 45,000 sportsmen from 17 countries.
Don Peay added, “Greg has played a huge role in building and maintaining these herds, and understanding the conservation benefits of having strong partnerships with conservation groups, industry, and sportsmen. While he will be missed here in Utah, we look forward to his influence on a higher playing field in the coming years.”
Mr. Sheehan is accomplished and skilled at solving wildlife and landowner conflicts, bringing diverse sportsman’s groups together, and engaging the broader public to meet the challenges of modern day wildlife management. Greg has supported the release of species that haven’t been common on the landscape in decades to get citizens engaged and back in the outdoors enjoying wildlife. He encourages pheasant and chukar releases, youth recruitment days, walk-in access properties, birding programs, local community fisheries and the development of a new nature center on the shores of the Great Salt Lake ecosystem. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and an MBA.
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