21 selected for panel on wolf management

By Gary Gerhardt, Rocky Mountain News
May 7, 2004

State wildlife officials have selected 21 people to serve on a working group to design a plan for managing wolves that may come into the state.

Sixty livestock producers, environmentalists, sportsmen, wildlife biologists and local government members who volunteered to serve on the committee, and the group was pared to 21 by state Division of Wildlife regional managers and upper-level supervisors.

“We selected people we felt could work with others, had time to do it and could reasonably represent the issues and concerns of the group they represented,” Gary Skiba, a state wildlife biologist who heads up Colorado’s wolf-management effort, said Thursday.

One representative each is still to be selected from local government, the National Park Service and the state wildlife division.

“I really see participation by the government services more as advisory role in dealing with legal problems and questions,” Skiba said.

He said the next step will be to set up a meeting steered by Meridian Institute, a Dillon-based company that helps diverse groups solve contentious public issues.

Rob Edwards of Sinapu, a conservation group in Boulder who was selected to the team, said, “I think this can work, but it’s up to the dynamics of the team, facilitators and people to be able to think outside the box. If they allow science to be the guide, I think we’ll be able to compromise and come up with a workable plan.”

Almost everyone agrees that it is only a matter of time until wolves find their way to Colorado.

Those selected to deal with the issue are:

• Wildlife biologists: Del Benson, Anne Ruggles.

• Sportsmen: Michael Bond, Dick Steele.

• Local governments: Les Hampton, another to be determined.

• Livestock producers: Robert Bray, Bonnie Kline, Duke Phillips, Jean Stetson.

• Environmentalists/wildlife advocates: Rob Edward, Mark Pearson, Dyanne Singler, Gary Wockner.

• Colorado State Forest Service: Joe Duda.

• Colorado Department of Agriculture: Jim Grady.

• U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service: Susan Linner.

• Colorado Office of Economic Development: Stefanie Dalgar.

• Bureau of Land Management: Raul Morales.

• U.S. Department of Agriculture: Michael Yeary.

• U.S. Forest Service: Nancy Warren.

• National Park Service: To be determined.

• Colorado Division of Wildlife: Gary Skiba and one to be determined.

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