I have lived in Western Montana and North Idaho for over 20 years. During this time, I earned an B.S. degree in Biology from the University of Montana and an M.S. degree in Botany, with an emphasis in Plant Community Ecology, from Washington State University. In Western Montana, I’ve worked a variety of jobs including researching novel habitat restoration techniques, organizing local landowners groups for invasive species management, ecological consulting on private property, and whitewater raft guiding. For the past decade I’ve have served as the Conservation Lands Manager for the City of Missoula. Missoula’s Conservation Lands Program is responsible for management of all natural, cultural and recreational resources on over 4200 ac. of City-owned public natural areas. Across the Intermountain West, public appetite for recreation is seemingly insatiable and managing natural areas adjacent to communities known for outdoor-recreation can be difficult. Balancing human-caused impacts with habitat conservation in Missoula involves strong partnerships, planning, education, and good-old fashioned elbow grease. My presentation will focus on lessons learned while managing high-use public Open Space and will highlight several projects Missoula is undertaking to curb recreational impacts on Conservation Lands

Website- Missoula’s Conservation Lands Management Plan www.ci.missoula.mt.us/DocumentCenter/Home/View/4499

Mt. Jumbo’s Forest Management Plan on Critical Elk Winter Range www.ci.missoula.mt.us/DocumentCenter/Home/View/27672

2015 Inventory and Condition Assessment of Trail Systems on Missoula’s Conservation Lands http://ci.missoula.mt.us/DocumentCenter/View/33531

Email: mvalliant@ci.missoula.mt.us