New ranger to take over Madison Ranger District

The Beaverhead Deerlodge National Forest has hired a new district ranger for the Madison Ranger District.

Ken Harris hales from California and will start in Ennis on May 21.

Harris has a long background with the Forest Service and also has experience in teaching elementary school and consulting with landowners as a forester.

His most recent post was as district ranger on the Happy Camp/Oak Knoll Ranger District, which boarders Montana and Oregon.

Harris and his wife Theresa have always been drawn to small communities and lived for a long time in Etna, Calif.

“Ennis just reminded us of Etna and my wife always insisted that we stay in a small town and so Ennis was perfect,” Harris said.

While on a recent house-hunting trip to Ennis, Harris spoke with the two previous district rangers at the Madison Ranger District, Sue Heald and Mark Petroni. They helped give him some insight into the job he’s stepping into.

Ultimately, being a district ranger is about finding people who will work with the agency and together to help solve problems.

“I really look forward to the whole idea of finding people we can cooperate with,” Harris said.

In a statement, Beaverhead Deerlodge National Forest supervisor Dave Myers said he was excited to have Harris take over in Ennis.

“Ken will be a great addition to the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest leadership team and to the community of Ennis,” Myers said in the statement. “We are very fortunate to gain someone with Ken’s depth of experience in areas of critical need such as fire and timber management.”

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