The third time appears to be the charm for Inyo National Forest, which announced last week that Ed Armenta of Arizona is slated to become its next head honcho.
Armenta, currently the district ranger of the Payson District of the Tonto National Forest, will be the third Forest Service employee to step into the forest supervisor post vacated by Jim Upchurch in September 2010.
Upchurch transferred to Coronado National Forest and two temporary replacements had filled the position until a permanent replacement – Armenta – could be named.
Kit Mullen, district ranger for the Hat Creek District of the Lassen National Forest in Northern California, first filled in beginning in October 2010. Then in January 2011, Jon Regelbrugge, the current district ranger for the Mammoth and Mono Lake Ranger Districts, was named as the new acting forest supervisor.
Born and raised in Southern California, Armenta graduated from Humboldt State University in 1983 with a degree in Wildlife Management. He began working for the Forest Service as a wildlife biologist trainee on the Plumas National Forest in Northern California in 1981, and moved to the Sequoia National Forest in 1990. He was then promoted to Arizona serving as a deputy district ranger on the Prescott National Forest before becoming a district ranger on the Tonto National Forest in 2000.
During his previous 10 years as district ranger he also spent time on details as acting forest supervisor on both the Lincoln and the Kaibab National Forests, in New Mexico and Arizona respectively.
According to a press release, Forest Service officials have noted that Armenta is particularly strong in working collaboratively with others to find common ground solutions and working in team settings. He has been actively engaged in equal employment opportunity commission and civil rights programs. He also has a strong fire and fuels management background.
“I am really excited to be coming to the Eastern Sierra to serve as the Inyo National Forest Supervisor,” Armenta said in a press release. “I spent much of my early years fishing, camping and hiking there with my family, and it has been a lifelong dream to live and work in the Eastern Sierra. I am delighted to have been selected as the supervisor of one of the most beautiful national forests in the nation, with the huge abundance of recreation opportunities that it offers.”
Armenta and his wife, Tambra, have three grown daughters and one granddaughter.
A reporting date for Armenta has not been set yet, but it is anticipated to be this spring. Regelbrugge will continue to serve as Acting Forest Supervisor until Armenta arrives.