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Public Affairs Report

John Freemuth was quoted in the Associated Press

Portrait of John Freemuth“John Freemuth, executive director of the Andrus Center and a public lands expert, was quoted in an Associated Press story about how the growing number of homes built on the edge of the wilderness is complicating firefighting efforts. The story notes that the efforts going into protecting homes are detracting from those to save landscapes like the sagebrush steppe. Freemuth notes the frustration of those who manage fires and the need for homeowners to create defensible space around their homes.” Read the Denver Post publication, “Homes on edge of the wilderness complicate wildfire efforts”, here.

Original source: Boise State Update post, John Freemuth, 7/27/16 | The Denver Post, 7/27/16

MPA Alumnus, Nick Diaz, in Action

“Nick Diaz, Disability Resource Center, represented Boise State University Veteran Services at the Western Association of Veterans Education Specialists (WAVES) in Albuquerque, New Mexico, this week. The conference invited WAVES members from universities across the country, focusing on various aspects of veteran education. Diaz, one of the school certifying officials for the university, was a speaker at the conference. He presented on the efforts by Boise State in providing a more complete service to its student veterans. Although most departments across the country focus on processing GI Bill benefits, he spoke about the need to provide additional support, including academic, financial and personal well-being resources.

Diaz highlighted the necessity to interact with campus and community partners in order to develop a network of assistance. The connections created with those partners assist in directing students to the correct resource in a time of need. Additionally, he highlighted efforts by Veteran Services to develop a strategy of direct support by adding an Academic and Career Advisor and an Outreach Coordinator to its department through a grant provided.”

Original source: Boise State Update post, Nick Diaz, 7/26/16

John Freemuth Quoted on

John Freemuth, PhDJohn Freemuth was quoted in a story on the website about the efforts of Native tribes within Utah’s Bears Ears area to preserve the area as a national monument. Freemuth noted that the proposal is “is especially interesting because it involves Native American tribes, which have historically been excluded or marginalized from the discussion around such designations.”

He went on to say that the Antiquities Act is now being used to help “complete the American story” in new areas, including gay rights, women’s rights, and WWII internment camps.

“There’s many ways to tell a story,” said Freemuth. “The park service is increasingly trying to tell the whole story, and I think they’re doing a good job of it.”

Read the story “Can a trove of Native American ruins be saved from eBay and ‘white people’ ideology?”

Freemuth also is referenced in a Utah Review story about Bears Ears and the historical importance of the area to local tribes. In that reference, Freemuth noted that the Antiquities Act is being used to “complete the American story.” Read the article about Edge of Morning here.

Original source: Boise State Update, 7/15/16 |, 7/14/16 | The Utah Review, 7/15,16

John Freemuth Named Executive Director of the Andrus Center

Portrait of John Freemuth“Boise State University professor John Freemuth has been named the new executive director of the Andrus Center for Public Policy. Freemuth has a long track record of service for the Andrus Center, most recently as senior fellow for environment and public lands. He also teaches environmental policy and administration in the university’s School of Public Service.”

Read the full story on the Boise State UPDATE post, 7/18/16.

Original source: Boise State UPDATE, 7/18/16 | The Chronicle, 8/5/16

PhD in PPA Student in Action

Check out Terry Rich’s article “on the Migratory Bird Treaty Act in the August issue of Birdwatching. This is not a fluff piece, like most being written on the MBTA this summer, but points out what USFWS can do to make it much more effective.”

Migratory Bird Treaty Act is now live!  “Of the first magnitude” article published in the BirdWatching magazine, August 2016

Originating source: Posted on the “Boise State University PPA Student Group” Facebook site, posted by Amy Ferriter from Terry Rich’s site, 7/1/16 | BirdWatching magazine, August 2016, 9/27/16

John Freemuth – Quoted in The Idaho Statesman

John Freemuth- Portrait Land transfer surveys in Idaho need nuanced approach

John Freemuth is professor of public policy and senior fellow at the Cecil Andrus Center for Public Policy at Boise State. Justin Vaughn is associate professor of political science and helped lead the public policy survey team.

Read the article “Land transfer surveys in Idaho need nuanced approach” here.

John Freemuth was quoted in The Conversation

John Freemuth Portrait “John Freemuth, senior fellow of the Cecil Andrus Center for Public Policy, penned an in-depth analysis of the national Antiquities Act for The Conversation. The piece is part of a series on the national park system. The article, titled “How the Antiquities Acts has expanded the national park system and fueled struggles over land protection,” looks at why the act was created during Theodore Roosevelt’s administration, how it has been enacted over the years, and why so many citizens have fought for and against it. Read Freemuth’s full article here.”

Original Source: The Boise State UPDATE | AP The Big Story | The Conversation – June 7, 2016

John Freemuth Quoted in High Country News

Photo-Freemuth,JohnJohn Freemuth was quoted in a story in the High Country News titled “How the BLM is overhauling land-use planning.” He notes that while involving residents in the land-use planning process is praiseworthy, given the intensity of current struggles over the use of public lands, it’s important that managers be well trained or “the whole thing can still fall apart.”

Ph.D. Student Vanessa Fry Addresses Social Change with Big Data

Vanessa Fry, assistant director of the Public Policy Research Center, and Kimberly Gardner, a graduate assistant with the center, attended the inaugural All Hands Meeting of the West Big Data Innovation Hub (WBDIH) in early May. Steve Cutchin, associate professor of computer science at Boise State, also attend the meeting. The gathering brought together data enthusiasts looking to share resources, launch collaborations and strengthen the big data community. Participants included the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, The White House, local and state government, industry, nonprofits and academia.

The WBDIH is one of four regional hubs funded by the National Science Foundation to address societal challenges through big data innovation. The hub strives to build public/private partnerships with academia, industry, government and nonprofits throughout our region.

John Freemuth Involved in BLM Planning Proposal

Photo-Freemuth,JohnJohn Freemuth was among a group of national scholars who study public lands who provided comment on the Bureau of Land Management’s proposed planning rules. The group called for regulations that better implement federal requirements giving priority to Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACECs) and offers specific suggestions for improvement.

Suggestions include:

  • Requiring that the new “planning assessment” process be carried out at the landscape level.
  • Strengthening provisions for monitoring, evaluation and adaptive management.
  • Clarifying the public’s opportunity to nominate new ACECs between planning cycles.