BILLINGS — Gary Hammond of Billings, region 5 supervisor for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, has been named conservation professional of the year by the Montana Wildlife Federation.
Hammond received the Les Pengelly Award – named in recognition of the former University of Montana professor and biologist – at the MWF annual convention April 18 in Helena.
Those who nominated Hammond for the award cited his efforts to expand public access to land, water and wildlife. He was described as a “highly motivated and committed individual who has worked tirelessly in keeping local sportsmen groups and wildlife interests informed and engaged in issues.” Some examples of his accomplishments included purchases of the Yellowstone River Wildlife Management Area and State Park near Pompeys Pillar, opening access to state land along Alexander Road north of Billings and oversight of watershed issues and fisheries flows in the Bighorn River.
Hammond was named FWP Region 5 supervisor three years ago after serving with the department as wildlife bureau chief in Helena, regional wildlife biologist in Dillon, regional wildlife biologist in Glendive and a special projects biologist in Missoula.