Randy Rasmussen is BCHA’s Director for Public Lands & Recreation. He succeeded BCHA’s legendary Dennis Dailey of Pinedale, Wyoming, who recruited and endorsed securing Randy as his replacement.
Randy began with BCHA in 2012, and shifted to full-time with BCHA in 2014. One of his primary roles is assisting BCHA’s Executive Committee and state organizations to advance initiatives and strengthen partnerships in order to perpetuate the common sense use and enjoyment of horses and pack stock in America’s back country and Wilderness areas.
Randy has been successful in strengthening BCHA’s partnerships with federal agencies, including the U.S. Forest Service, the National Park Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). He often is greeted warmly when meeting new agency personnel as a result of BCHA’s reputation and amazing record of volunteer service developed over the organization’s 42 years of existence (including over 4 million volunteer-hours in the past 20 years alone!).
Randy is a key player in BCHA’s efforts to promote solutions to the trail maintenance crisis on our national forests. He works closely with partners from The Wilderness Society, American Horse Council and other organizations to demonstrate the groundswell of public support for the National Forest System Trails Stewardship Act (a bill introduced in Congress at the request of BCHA and these partners). Randy also works closely with BCH chapters and state organizations engaged in recreation and wilderness planning efforts among the national parks, including plans affecting Yellowstone, Olympic, Bryce Canyon, and Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks. He currently is involved in negotiations with the BLM to craft a national 5-year Memorandum of Understanding that will facilitate partnerships between BCHA chapters and BLM field offices, with the objective to promote and expand the system of trails for hiker and horse use on BLM lands throughout the western states.
Randy’s background includes a blend of academic knowledge, a love for outdoor adventure, public land-related environmental consulting, and non-profit recreation and conservation grassroots organizing. Prior to joining BCHA, he was senior policy manager for American Hiking Society. From his office in Corvallis, Oregon, Randy coordinated and unified the recreation community’s response to recreation plans undertaken by national forests and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in the Pacific Northwest. In this role, Randy applied policy, grassroots organizing, science and economics in the protection of wildlands and traditional “quiet” recreational uses. He forged partnerships with hunters, anglers, horsemen, mountain bikers and other stakeholders. He previously served as field representative in the southwestern U.S. for two other national non-profits—The Wilderness Society and National Parks Conservation Association.
Randy was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to represent dispersed recreation on the Oregon Coast Range Provincial Advisory Committee, which advises local offices of the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management (BLM). He is a founding board member of Trailkeepers of Oregon and worked as a seasonal ranger in western Colorado on both the White River National Forest and in BLM’s Uncompahgre Resource Area.
Randy earned a Master’s degree from Colorado State University in Natural Resources and Recreation, emphasizing Wilderness Management (he earned a Bachelor’s of Science at the University of California, Davis). He has three children and his family enjoys hiking and horseback riding. After founding a consignment tack shop in Corvallis, his wife—also a CSU’s Master’s graduate—became an equine hoof-care specialist (i.e., “barefoot farrier”). She provides natural hoof care for clients throughout the Willamette Valley. Randy and Lorri own and ride three trail horses including Randy’s favorite, Jasmine, a Kiger mare.