Marshall Bloom, M.D., of Hamilton, has been selected by the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies as its Outstanding Citizen Wildlife Contributor of the Year.
In his letter nominating Bloom, FWP Director Patrick Graham characterized Bloom as "a tireless advocate for wild trout and trout habitat, both in Montana and at the national level." Bloom is past president of the local Trout Unlimited Chapter; chairman of the State TU Council; and serves on TU's national governing board. Governor Marc Racicot appointed him as chairman of the Montana Whirling Disease Task Force, a position he held for four years. In addition, Bloom was a founding board member of the Whirling Disease Foundation, which has raised millions of dollars for whirling disease research in Montana and across the West. He is a long-time board member of the Teller Wildlife Refuge, a non-profit organization dedicated to environmental education located near his home in the Bitterroot Valley.
Graham said that the first river restoration projects in the Bitterroot drainage were organized by Bloom and that he was instrumental in establishing a private/public partnership to collaboratively develop a restoration plan for Arctic grayling in the Big Hole River. Following that, he went on to raise money to support the effort.
Graham said he especially values Bloom as a reasonable, rational, constructive voice for conservation. "Bloom is one of those rare leaders who is universally recognized for his technical abilities, people skills, and dedication and commitment to the resource. Working in his spare time he has accomplished more for wild trout than do many professionals in a career," Graham said.
The Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies is an organization of 13 states and provinces responsible for managing their state's and province's fish and wildlife resources.