The Bitterroot National Forest Supervisor’s Office recently announced that Steve Brown has accepted the Ranger position for the Stevensville Ranger District. Brown has been serving as the interim Ranger at Stevensville for the past several months.
“I believe folks in the Bitterroot Valley will really enjoy working with Steve,” said Matt Anderson, Bitterroot National Forest Supervisor. “He has a natural leadership style. He’s a great listener, has a solid work ethic, and has demonstrated an ability to get work done at a landscape level. Steve’s been working at a regional level most of his career, and this position will allow him to bring that larger perspective to Stevensville, a place he’s called home for the last 20 years.”
In an interview Brown said his family was from New England, but that he grew up in Boise, Idaho. He said he was one of the first in his family to get a college degree. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Resource Conservation and a Master’s Degree in Forestry from the University of Montana. His Master’s Thesis involved using satellite imagery to map fire severity in the Skalkaho area.
After school, however, he changed horses, you might say, and decided to become an outfitter in the Ruby valley.
“That didn’t work out,” he said.
His wife wanted to move to Missoula. Without a job, he looked at ads for work in the area and saw the Forest Service was kicking off a project to create a geo-database for Forest Plans. He took the job and he and his wife bought a place near Stevensville.
He served as the Program Manager for the Northern Region’s Geospatial Group and has been with the Forest Service for 16 years. In that time, he has worked across Montana and Idaho conducting vegetation surveys in support of the region’s vegetation mapping program. He has worked extensively in support of project planning and analysis, helping resource specialists incorporate new data and technologies into their research. He worked on detecting and monitoring the large fires of 2000. He also served as Incident Commander for the 2017 Regional Post-Fire Incident Management Team, charged with coordinating the Regional response to the historic fire season of 2017.
If that’s not impressive enough, he is also a farmer/rancher in his spare time. He and his wife and daughter live on a small farm just outside of Stevensville where they raise Lowline cattle and custom cut hay.
If not working they can be found either riding horses in the rugged canyons of the Bitterroots or pursuing elk high in the Sapphires.
“I’m incredibly excited to have the opportunity to join the Bitterroot National Forest team,” said Brown, “and be able to work in a landscape that I know so well and love so much. I am looking forward to continuing to build on the work and the relationships with the community that have begun these last few months. It is truly a blessing and an honor to be selected as the next District Ranger in Stevensville.”