Don Oman by Mike Hudak
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The Politics of Managing Livestock on Public Lands

Don Oman, a farm-raised Montana native, earned his bachelor’s degree in forest management from the University of Montana. In 1986, after twenty-three years with the US Forest Service, he became the district ranger on the Twin Falls District (Sawtooth National Forest, ID) where he found severe, widespread environmental damage caused by long-term livestock grazing. During his ten years on the district, Mr. Oman came to national attention because of conflicts with ranchers over the management of their livestock under his jurisdiction. He, nonetheless, successfully resisted the ensuing political pressure from ranching interests that sought to remove him as district ranger.

For his efforts to protect our natural resources from poor grazing practices, Mr. Oman was awarded the Wilderness Society’s Olaus and Margaret Murie Award in 1991.

In this video, Don Oman explains how political pressure initiated by ranchers leads to environmentally harmful management of livestock grazing on federal public lands.

Recorded in August 2003. This video is an excerpt from Don Oman’s interview in Western Turf Wars: The Politics of Public Lands Ranching.