What Does the Utah Public Lands Initiative Need to Succeed? - Former BLM Director Joins Panel Discussion!



  • Capitol Complex, State Office Building Auditorium (map)
  • 450 N State St
  • Salt Lake City, UT, 84114
  • United States

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What Does the Utah Public Lands Initiative Need to Succeed?
Utah Breakfast Club Event
Utah State Capitol Complex, State Office Building Auditorium
Thursday, June 11, 2015, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

With 67 percent of Utah land under federal control, ownership stirs passions. Proposals to put more land under state control persist, even if their success seems remote. Is there any middle ground? The Utah Public Lands Initiative led by Rep. Bob Bishop is a promising compromise to rationalize and rearrange acreage under federal and state control. How can this effort succeed in Utah and Washington?

CONFIRMED PANELISTS:

  • David Garbett, Staff Counsel, Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance
  • Patrick Shea, Former Director of the Bureau of Land Management
  • Casey Snider, Legislative Director, Rep. Rob Bishop, Utah's First District
  • Cody Stewart, Policy Director, Office of Gov. Gary Herbert
  • Michael Swenson, Swenson Strategies
  • Mark Ward, Utah Association of Counties 
  • Moderator: Drew Clark, Of Counsel, Kirton McConkie; Founder, Utah Breakfast Club

BIOS of Panelists:

  • David Garbett, Staff Counsel, Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance

David Garbett is a staff attorney with the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance. He has been with the organization for nine years. David grew up in the Salt Lake Valley.

  • Patrick Shea, Former Director of the Bureau of Land Management

Patrick Shea is a graduate of Stanford University, Oxford University and the Harvard Law School. He was assistant to the staff director of the Senate Intelligence Committee, counsel to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and general counsel to KUTV and the Ogden Standard-Examiner. He served as Director of the Bureau of Land Management and Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Interior from 1997-2000, under President Bill Clinton, and has also worked at Ballard Spahr, Kansas State University (as adjunct professor of agronomy), and is currently research professor of biology at the University of Utah.

  • Casey Snider, Legislative Director, Rep. Rob Bishop, Utah's First District

Casey Snider did his undergraduate work at Utah State University where he studied conservation ecology. He later received a Master’s in Environmental Policy from Johns Hopkins University. Snider spent time working on public lands issues for Senator Bob Bennett, and is the former Utah Coordinator for Trout Unlimited. Snider currently is the Legislative Director in the office of Rep. Rob Bishop where his responsibilities include issues regarding agriculture, energy, and natural resources. He has travelled thousands of miles and attended hundreds of meetings in an effort bring about Rep. Bishop’s Public Lands Initiative. Snider grew up in Liberty, UT and now lives in Cache County with his wife and daughter.

  • Cody Stewart, Policy Director, Office of Gov. Gary Herbert

Cody Stewart, Governor Herbert's policy director and energy advisor, has fifteen years of experience in government and public policy with a special focus on energy and western natural resource policy. Stewart has worked in a number of capacities focusing on both Utah and national energy and natural resource policy, including as the communications coordinator for the House Committee on Natural Resources under Chairman Jim Hansen, UT-01, as a senior legislative assistant on  Energy and Public Lands Policy to Congressman Chris Cannon, UT-03, as a legislative director for Congressman Rob Bishop, UT-01, and as Chief-of-Staff to Utah Lt. Governor Greg Bell.

  • Michael Swenson, Swenson Strategies

Michael Swenson is a native Utahn who grew up near the San Rafael Swell, a hotbed of land use controversy for many decades. He worked professionally on federal land policy matters for more than 10 years and that currently counts the American Lands Council among his clients. 

  • Mark Ward, Utah Association of Counties 

Mark Ward has served as Senior Policy Analyst and Public Lands Counsel of the Utah Association of Counties since joining UAC in 2006. He graduated in 1984 from the Brigham Young University law school. Prior to UAC Ward worked seven years in private law practice and 15 years in the Utah Attorney General’s Office Litigation Division and RS 2477/Public Lands Sections. He and his wife Aimee have eight children and 11 grandchildren and reside in southwest Salt Lake Valley.

  • Moderator: Drew Clark, Of Counsel, Kirton McConkie; Founder, Utah Breakfast Club

Drew Clark is Of Counsel at  Kirton McConkie, which enhances clients’ ability to construct and operate high-speed broadband networks in public-private partnerships.  He is also the founder of the Utah Breakfast Club and the Broadband Breakfast Club, which tracks the development of Gigabit Networks, broadband usage, and universal service. He brings experts and practitioners together to advance the benefits provided by broadband: Job creation, telemedicine, online learning, public safety, energy, transportation and eGovernment. In April 2015, Clark was elected President of the Rural Telecommunications Congress, a national non-profit organization devoted to ensuring a strong future for rural America.

(Photograph by Bureau of Land Management)