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Michael P. Dombeck

One of the most renowned and respected contemporary conservationists, Mike Dombeck dedicated a quarter of a century to managing federal lands and natural resources in the long-term public interest. His leadership in the Bureau of Land Management and as former Chief of the Forest Service impacted nearly 500 million acres. His legacy is one of steadfast stewardship for the land, and he is most noted for significant efforts toward watershed health and restoration, sustainable forest ecosystem management, sound forest roads and roadless area protection. As the capstone to his life-long career in public service, he was granted the highest award in federal service, the Presidential Rank – Distinguished Executive Award.


Dr. Dombeck is also the recipient of the prestigious Audubon Medal and the Lady Bird Johnson Conservation Award. He has authored, co-authored, and edited over 200 popular and scholarly publications, including the book Watershed Restoration: Principles and Practices, and more recently the book From Conquest to Conservation: Our Public Land Legacy.


Dr. Dombeck now serves as GEM Pioneer Professor and UW System Fellow of Global Conservation. He is helping to lead the planning and development of the Global Environmental Management Education Center in the College of Natural Resources at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. The $100 million GEM project aims to develop and share world-class educational programs in natural resources and environmental management for building a sustainable future locally and abroad. He lectures and makes frequent national and international presentations on current environmental, natural resource management, and social issues. 


Dr. Dombeck and his wife, Patricia, reside in Plover, Wisconsin. 

From Conquest to Conservation

Our Public Lands Legacy

From Conquest to Conservation is a visionary new work from three of the nation’s most knowledgeable experts on public lands. As chief of the Forest Service, Mike Dombeck became a lightning rod for public debate over issues such as...

No Place Distant

Roads and Motorized Recreation on America's Public Lands

While many of the roads on public lands provide a great service with relatively little harm, others create significant problems -- from habitat fragmentation to noise pollution to increased animal mortality -- with little or no benefit....