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2019 Wilderness Rangers

Owsley 190522 4848


Zack Bumgarner
Santa Fe - West 

zackZack’s love for nature and the outdoors began on family camping trips as a young child and grew through monthly outings with the Boy Scouts. This culminated with attending college in the mountains of western North Carolina, graduating with a degree in Geography. After years in the GIS department of local government, Zack began volunteering with wilderness stewardship groups in North Carolina, building upon his knowledge and skills; something he has continued to do since moving to New Mexico. As a Wilderness Ranger for New Mexico Wild, Zack is now using these skills to help protect Wilderness and public lands here in the Land of Enchantment.



Doug Campbell
Santa Fe - Pecos

dougDoug, a native Santa Fean, went on his first New Mexico backcountry adventure when he was 10 years old—an overnight backpacking trip with his father into the Pecos Wilderness. Ever since, wilderness exploration and preservation have been his life’s passion, so much so that after a career in social work, he made his passion his profession. Since 2008 he has been a professional backpacking guide (for The Wildland Trekking Company) and a wilderness skills instructor (NOLS, United World College-USA, Albuquerque Academy). He has guided over 180 multi-day treks into the Grand Canyon and coordinates Wildland Trekking's conservation-focused philanthropy program. He is a life member of NM Wild, attended the Wilderness Act's 50th Anniversary Conference, and in 2014-15 conducted roadless-area inventories for NM Wild. He is a graduate of NOLS, Outward Bound Canada, and Penn State, where he earned a B.A. in history. The biggest wilderness adventure of his life was in 2018—a 24-day, 350-mile canoeing expedition down Alaska's Noatak River. Last but not least, he knows lots of funny a-guy-walked-into-a-bar jokes.


Brennan Davis

brennanBrennan is a proud New Mexico native who grew up exploring the state with his father. From the Gila Wilderness to the vast expanses of the Chihuahuan Desert around Las Cruces, the natural beauty of New Mexico inspired a strong conservation ethic that guides Brennan to this day. He obtained a B.S. degree in Biology from UNM and began pursuing a career in natural resource conservation. Working with the BLM in Carlsbad, Brennan began his professional journey contributing to the management of sensitive wildlife species and cave environments. Since then, he has worked towards conservation projects across the state, from native seed collection to forest health monitoring in the Rio Grande watershed. Brennan is excited to bring his passion for the natural world to NM Wild, to contribute to the management of New Mexico's incredible Wilderness areas.


Becky Fitzpatrick
Santa Fe - Pecos

becky rotatedBecky fell in love with the landscapes and people of the southwestern United States when she studied Natural History and Ecology at Prescott College in Arizona. After attaining her bachelors degree, Becky worked as a wildlife technician on a bear nutritional study in Yellowstone National Park, a tropic cascade study in Waterton Lakes Park, and a bison management study in Montana. She then began teaching wildlife science programs to high school students in the Yellowstone area, which grew into a love of teaching and place-based outdoor education. Becky returned to the southwest and worked for a conservation corps building trail and working on invasive species projects. She currently spends her time working seasonally as an outdoor educator with Outward Bound and Prescott College. Her love for wild places began young, and has continued to grow the more time she spends mentoring and teaching students within it. She has found no better teacher.



Jesse Furr

jesseJesse is a lifelong lover of wilderness and the outdoors. As a community-minded Northern New Mexican, he has an interest in protecting and stewarding wildlands because of the unrivaled value they offer for wildlife, vegetation, soils, watershed health, and human enjoyment. Jesse is an artist and avid wilderness enthusiast who is excited to use his skills as a New Mexico Wild ranger to maintain and advocate for wilderness character through education and improved access in the Lincoln National Forest.


 James Lautzenheiser
Santa Fe - West

jamesHi, I'm James! After earning a Recreation Management degree from Appalachian State University and spending six seasons filling different Wilderness stewardship roles with Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards, I took a side year to explore other parts of the country and fields of work. I am excited to come back to the Wilderness fold in New Mexico!



Tobias Nickel

tobias croppedHailing from Germany, Tobias Nickel first discovered his love for backpacking and the American West while attending college in California. He graduated from the University of San Diego with a degree in environmental science, philosophy, and political science. Working as a guide for the university’s outdoor adventure center, Tobias led trips to wilderness destinations across the Southwest. Since graduation, Tobias has worked for Grand Canyon National Park, the Bureau of Land Management, California Wolf Center, and the Catalina Island Conservancy. Tobias’ experiences on public lands in the American West have profoundly impacted his life in positive and transformative ways. Having had the privilege of experiencing many wilderness areas, Tobias strives to share his love for the outdoors with others and help them discover their own land ethic. As a Wilderness Ranger on the Lincoln National Forest, Tobias is excited to support stewardship of New Mexico’s wild treasures and to inspire others in the process.


 Irene Owsley
Santa Fe - Pecos

ireneIrene Owsley, who has worked as a professional photographer for more than 20 years (following a career in museums), comes to her position as a Wilderness Ranger, primarily through her specialty in outdoors and travel imagery and the stories she has covered in public lands, including several designated wildernesses and national parks. Her work has appeared in such magazines as Canoe & Kayak, Sierra, National Parks, Earthwatch, and Natural History and in the publications of several conservation organizations. Since 2011, she has been selected for five artist-in-residence programs: Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico (where she also volunteered for trail work), and four through Voices of the Wilderness in Alaska (Nellie Juan-College Fjord Wilderness Study Area, Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge and two in Tracy Arm-Ford’s Terror Wilderness). A panorama from the latter residency was included in an exhibition at the Smithsonian’s Museum of Natural History celebrating the 50th anniversary of The Wilderness Act. She has exhibited her work in venues including the Anchorage Museum, Smithsonian’s Museum of Natural History, and the National Institutes of Health. A long-time resident of Washington DC until 2014, Owsley found the “wild” in this metropolitan area by creating a body of work called “Wild Washington,” capturing images of many untamed areas within a twenty mile radius of the White House. She now makes her home in Santa Fe.


 Andrew Reville

andrewAndrew grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, far from any semblance of Wilderness as a concept or reality. Still, he has valued natural places and the solitude found within them since childhood. A backpacking trip in the Dolly Sods Wilderness of West Virginia as a teen gave him his first taste of these values on a larger scale. He is grateful to be able to protect these values as they exist in the wild lands of New Mexico for a living. He is returning for his second season as a Cibola National Forest Wilderness Ranger. Previously, he has worked for the Student Conservation Association in wilderness areas of Idaho and has a Bachelor's of Science in Biology.



This summer, nine Wilderness Rangers will be afoot across wilderness areas on the Cibola, Lincoln, and Santa Fe National Forests through a public-private partnership between the Forest Service and New Mexico Wild. Ranger pairs will be working in the Sandia Mountain, Manzano Mountains, Apache Kid and Withington wilderness areas on the Cibola National Forest; the White Mountain and Capitan wilderness areas on the Lincoln National Forest; and the Chama River Canyon, San Pedro Parks, and Pecos wilderness areas on the Santa Fe National Forest.

This partnership is designed to increase stewardship in wilderness areas across northern New Mexico. Rangers will be providing a range of important services including wilderness character monitoring, trails assessment, trail clearing, campsite rehabilitation, public outreach and wilderness education. Their work provides valuable information on current wilderness conditions while enhancing public safety and contributing to positive wilderness experiences for wilderness visitors.


Volunteer engagement is an integral aspect of this partnership. Providing the public opportunities to be involved helps leverage scarce public dollars, helps address the backlog of maintenance and improvement needs and instills a sense of pride and stewardship for New Mexico’s wilderness areas. Most volunteer projects will focus on monitoring visitor use (see “solitude monitoring” section below), but could also include campsite and trail rehabilitation, signage, trash clean-up and other types of monitoring efforts.

If you would like to volunteer in one of the wilderness areas listed above, please use the information below to contact the rangers working in that wilderness. And, if you see these rangers on the trail, please take a moment to say HELLO!


Do you like to hike in wilderness and want to give something back? Sign up to help the Cibola, Santa Fe and Carson National Forests conduct wilderness solitude monitoring! We are looking for avid hikers and wilderness lovers to count wilderness encounters across several wilderness areas in northern New Mexico. This fun and easy volunteer project can be done without supervision (after a ½ day of training) in pairs or as a group. This summer, monitoring will take place in the Sandia Mountain, Manzano Mountain, Apache Kid, Withington, Chama River Canyon, Columbine-Hondo, Latir Peak and Wheeler Peak Wilderness areas. Contact the individual rangers assigned to each wilderness area for more information or to sign up!


Ever wonder what a day in the life of a wilderness ranger is like? Find out by joining our rangers for a day in the field. You'll learn backcountry travel skills, wilderness data collection basics, how to make effective and positive public contacts and more all while spending a fun day with great people in a beautiful place. Contact a ranger in your area of interest to learn more and schedule a day on the trail.


San Pedro Parks Wilderness, Chama River Canyon Wilderness, Pecos Wilderness

Zack BumgarnerThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
James Lautzenheiser, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Doug Campbell, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Becky FitzpatrickThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Irene Owsley, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sandia Mountain Wilderness, Manzano Mountains Wilderness, Apache Kid Wilderness, Withington Wilderness
Brennan Davis, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Andrew Reville, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

White Mountain Wilderness and Capitan Wilderness
Jesse Furr, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tobias Nickel, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

2018 Wilderness Rangers

Read their bios on Facebook>> 

 Zack Headshot  Greene bio pic  Atieno StrawberryReservoir UT  Ezra Sage
Zack Bumgarner
Santa Fe National Forest
David Greene
Santa Fe National Forest
Atieno Ouma
LIncoln National Forest
Ezra Sage
Santa Fe National Forest


 BFitzpatrick bio pic  Fuentes bio pic 2  Rhett headshot2  Mortenson bio pic 1
Becky Fitzpatrick
Santa Fe National Forest
April Fuentes
Lincoln National Forest
Rhett Spencer
Carson National Forest
Ben Mortensen
Carson National Forest


 Ribbans bio pic  Reville bio pic
Will Ribbans
Cibola National Forest
Andrew Reville
Cibola National Forest