BLM Retirees and Friends

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 *  *  *  *  Pardon our 'dust'  *  *  *  *

Early in 1983, Bill Leavell, OR-WA State Director, suggested to Bob Hostetter, Chief of the Public Affairs Staff, that forming an organization of BLM retirees might have several benefits. It would provide:
  • A means for former BLM employees to maintain contacts with each other
  • Enable them to maintain their interests in natural resource management by keeping them abreast of BLM programs and activities, and 
  • Give BLM officials the opportunity to draw on the knowledge and long-time experience of former employees in considering issues of current public concerns.
On April 5, 1983, a letter was sent out to all BLM retirees of record who lived in Oregon or Washington, advising them of the opportunity to form such an organization. On May 26, 1983, a luncheon was held at the Coliseum Thunderbird in Portland. It was attended by 62 former and current BLM employees, incouding some spouses and others. Thus was launched the organization that came to be known as "BLM Retirees & Friends."

Dick Prather and Scott Abdon, 2014 luncheon
2014 Spring luncheon
A second luncheon was held at the same place on September 27, 1983, at which time the first officers were elected: Dick Bauman, president; Bill Cowan, president-elect; Phyllis Easton, secretary-treasurer; and Herb Haglund and Murl Storms, members-at-large of the Executive Committee. Dues were establish at $5.00/year.

A tour was conducted for BLM Retirees & Friends by the Salem District on November 10, 1983 with 20 participants. Since that time, there have been many tours and luncheons.

Rhea Demers, a member of the State Office Public Affairs staff, served as the registrar for the three events in 1983, as she did for most of the events scheduled in the 1980's and early 1990's. Upon her retirement, Rhea continued to serve on the Executive Committee as historian until 2005, and continued to coordinate our spring luncheons at Heidi's until 2010.

A special thanks to all of you who have made our organization successful by participating in our luncheons, summer tours, and serving as officers and members of the Executive Committee. Of recent note, Kathy Eaton was recognized for her long-term commitment at the 2014 Spring Luncheon (see picture to the right with Dana Shuford, outgoing president).
Kathy Eaton awarded for her long-term commitment

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