State forester tapped as BLM head for Montana, Dakotas

Joshua Murdock

Montana’s state forester will step up to the federal government next month as the Bureau of Land Management’s state director for Montana and the Dakotas.

BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning selected Sonya Germann for the role. In her current job as state forester, Germann leads the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation Forestry Division, headquartered in Missoula. She was also recently selected to serve on the Presidential Wildland Fire Mitigation and Management Commission. 

“Sonya brings a lifetime in Montana and over 20 years of natural resources, conservation and business management experience to her new role,” said Stone-Manning, herself a longtime Missoula resident. “She’s highly respected for her inclusive approach to management, her ability to build strong relationships on the ground, and finding solutions to tough issues.” 

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When Germann begins her role at the BLM in August, she’ll oversee 8.3 million acres of public lands across three states, plus 47 million subterranean acres of mineral estate, the agency stated. She will also oversee 600 permanent employees, 230 seasonal workers and “a myriad of public land uses and resources, including energy development, livestock grazing, outdoor recreation and the protection and control

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