Dan Halstead, wildlife resource management supervisor for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department in Riverdale, received the agency’s Director’s Award for professional excellence during the Department’s annual meeting Dec. 10 in Bismarck.
Terry Steinwand, Game and Fish director, said Halstead is known for his professional networking, project creativity and resourcefulness. “Dan’s unwavering commitment to the agency and resource are to be commended,” Steinwand said.
Halstead was mentioned for his dedication, eye for detail and management approach. “His aggressive management philosophy includes establishment of high quality food plots, tree and shrub plantings, grass and forb seedings, haying and grazing rotations, as well as the use of prescribed burning to enhance habitat for wildlife production and hunting opportunities,” Steinwand said.
Blake Riewer is Wildlife Officer of the Year
Blake Riewer, North Dakota Game and Fish Department district game warden stationed in Grand Forks, is the state’s 2015 Wildlife Officer of the Year. Riewer was honored recently by the Shikar-Safari Club International, a private conservation organization that annually recognizes outstanding wildlife officers in each state.
In a nomination letter sent to Shikar-Safari, chief warden Robert Timian said Riewer promotes safety by working diligently to be in the right place at the right time.
“Warden Riewer consistently takes on extra duties, which proves his dedication to his chosen profession,” Timian said. “He is constantly trying to improve his skills and tactics, which bodes well for the Department and citizens of North Dakota. He is most deserving of this recognition.”
Game and Fish recognizes employees
North Dakota Game and Fish Department Director Terry Steinwand recently honored a number of employees with performance-based awards. Steinwand presented the following awards at the department’s annual staff meeting Dec. 10.
Patrick Isakson and Sandra Johnson of Bismarck received the Special Projects award, given to individuals who implemented a successful new project. They were recognized for their efforts with successfully revising the State Wildlife Action Plan. “Completing this effort required extensive coordination and communication responsibilities,” Steinwand said. “The effort and skill displayed in accomplishing this most difficult task is exemplary and worthy of appreciation.”
Russ Kinzler, Riverdale, and Corey Wentland, Bismarck, received the Solid Foundation award, presented to staff who demonstrate exemplary work in their field. Kinzler was recognized for his work with the Missouri River System, while Wentland was noted for his efforts with federal aid and grants. “Russ possesses an incredible work ethic, positive attitude, strong mechanical skills and field expertise, and maintains a great working relationship with angling groups,” Steinwand said. “Corey sifts through mounds of proposals, applications and reports, and has the answers to all the difficult questions.”
Aaron Robinson, Dickinson, received the Public Outreach award, presented to an employee for showing a significant effort, ability or accomplishment in interacting with the public while promoting the department’s programs. Robinson was recognized for his work involved with the proposed listing of the greater sage grouse under the Endangered Species Act. “The coordination effort which Aaron undertook with private landowners, agencies and other states was significant,” Steinwand said.
Wes Erdle and Kyle Hoge of Bismarck were presented with the Innovations award, which recognizes staff for implementing a process to improve department goals and objectives. They were recognized for their statewide efforts in fisheries development projects. “Wes and Kyle are challenged with the unprecedented task of dealing with access issues on a statewide basis, and have tackled these responsibilities with energy and pride,” Steinwand said. “Each project is accomplished to the highest standard.”
Jonathan Tofteland, Bottineau, was named North Dakota’s Boating Officer of the Year. Chief warden Robert Timian said Tofteland’s district boasts one of the most sought-after recreational lakes in the state. “Warden Tofteland spends a great amount of time patrolling in and around Lake Metigoshe by vehicle, boat, snowmobile and ATV,” Timian said. “His enthusiasm for boat and water safety enforcement is readily apparent.”