The USDA Forest Service announced that Ben Benoit will serve as the Deer River District Ranger. Prior to his new post effective earlier this month, Benoit worked for the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe.
Benoit, who is also a Leech Lake Band member, has a wide range of experience, such as Environmental Director for Natural Resource Management.
The Forest says they used the Intergovernmental Personnel Act to place Benoit in the role of district ranger. The IPA’s intent is to facilitate cooperation between the federal government and eligible organizations, including tribal governments.
“Utilizing the IPA to bring Ben on board as part of the management of lands of mutual interest to the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe and economies and communities that we live and work with every day is truly beneficial to all. Through this collaboration we will grow understanding together,” said Michael Stansberry, Chippewa National Forest Supervisor.
“Ben brings a passion for Natural Resources and building relationships. It has been a pleasure working with him over the years, I am excited for what he will bring to the Deer River District and the Forest Service as a whole.”
“We welcome the appointment of Ben Benoit as Deer River District Ranger, and we are pleased to see the Chippewa National Forest utilizing the Intergovernmental Personnel Act to foster collaboration between the Forest Service and the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe”, Chairman Faron Jackson, Sr., Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe.
“As an enrolled tribal member with extensive experience in natural resource management and Tribal Ecological Knowledge (TEK), Benoit will bring a unique perspective to the management of our shared lands. We believe that this appointment will strengthen our government-to-government relationship and lead to better outcomes for our people and the environment.”