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25th anniversary milestone for the Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute & Arthur Carhart National Wilderness Training Center

Posted date: August 17, 2018

Twenty-five years ago this summer, in the spirit of cooperation, the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and U.S. Forest Service came together to create the Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute (Leopold Institute) and the Arthur Carhart National Wilderness Training Center (Carhart Center). 

National Wilderness Leadership Training Seeley Lake, MT
National Wilderness Leadership Training, Seeley Lake, MT
These premier federal interagency organizations provide unparalleled leadership in the field of wilderness science, professional development, and stewardship for the National Wilderness Preservation System. They carry forward the passion, determination, and hope of their namesakes, Aldo Leopold (1887-1948) – father of wilderness conservation and wildlife ecology, and Arthur Carhart (1892-1978) – first federal employee to propose protecting public lands in their undeveloped state, championing the idea of wilderness protection in the United States.

Jeff Marion (USGS) leads a crew evaluating sustainability of the Appalachian Trail
Jeff Marion (USGS) leads a crew evaluating sustainability of the Appalachian Trail
Over the last quarter century (since August 21, 1993), these organizations have conducted more than 300 wilderness science projects, trained over 30,000 women and men responsible for wilderness stewardship, and provided information and education to millions of visitors. The ongoing work of the Leopold Institute and the Carhart Center helps to inform everyday management and decisions to benefit the people, lands, waters, and wildlife within our National Wilderness Preservation System. “I am proud of the dedicated Carhart staff who provide critically acclaimed training to wilderness leaders across the U.S.”, stated Carhart Center Director, Andrea Gehrke. “Their guidance in the stewardship of wild and protected lands has influenced natural resource managers across the nation and around the world.”

Looking toward the future and the next twenty-five years, both organizations plan to continue their success by providing the foundational support to assist federal wilderness managers, and using integrated approaches to wilderness science and stewardship. “Our scientists know how important these unique public lands are and they value providing the information that agency staff need to manage and protect American wilderness” stated Susan Fox, Leopold Institute Director. The Carhart Center and Leopold Institute are focused on the reality that what we do today, as federal stewards, will be of long-term importance to what generations in the distant future will or will not have.

The Rocky Mountain Research Station (RMRS) is one of seven units within the U.S. Forest Service Research and Development. RMRS maintains 14 field laboratories throughout a 12-state territory encompassing parts of the Great Basin, Southwest, Rocky Mountains, and the Great Plains. RMRS also administers and conducts research on 14 experimental forests, ranges and watersheds and maintains long-term research databases for these areas. While anchored in the geography of the West our research is global in scale. To find out more about the RMRS go to You can also follow us on Twitter at




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Jennifer Hayes
Public Affairs Specialist