The Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests & Pawnee National Grassland has announced three new district rangers to lead the Boulder, Canyon Lakes, and Sulphur ranger districts.
“I couldn’t be more pleased with the outstanding individuals we have joining our Forests and Grassland leadership,” said Forest Supervisor Monte Williams. “I know they will do a great job supporting our employees and taking care of these places that mean so much to so many. Please join me in welcoming them.”
Boulder District Ranger Kevin McLaughlin:
McLaughlin will join the Boulder Ranger District on May 23, 2022. Having grown up in upstate New York, Kevin earned his bachelor’s degree in environmental science from SUNY Plattsburg. He started his Forest Service career in 2004 as a seasonal employee in the Arapaho National Forest’s Sulphur Ranger District. Over the next few years, he held many positions in the Forest, including district timber program manager, certified silviculturist, and forest timber program manager. Along the way, McLaughlin spent time working on the Black Hills National Forest and the Pike and San Isabel National Forests and serving as a program specialist for International Programs and USAID in Washington, D.C. In recent years, he stepped in as the Forest’s acting ecosystem staff officer for seven months during the fires of 2020, and then as acting Sulphur District Ranger since May 2021. McLaughlin, his wife, and their three teenage children have lived in Boulder County since 2015.
Canyon Lakes District Ranger Dennis Kuhnel:
Kuhnel returns to the Forest Service as the Canyon Lakes District Ranger on June 6, 2022, after most recently working for the Bureau of Land Management. He is a native of northwestern Nebraska. Dennis attended Colby College and earned graduate degrees from the Universities of Iowa, Nebraska, and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Kansas Law where he specialized in Natural Resources Law. Throughout his career, he has worked in academia and for the federal government in cultural resources, education and interpretation, recreation, and as the Middle Fork District Ranger on the Salmon-Challis National Forests. He is excited to join the district and engage in all the great work taking place. He and his wife, a Colorado State University alum, and four children are looking forward to the move to the Fort Collins area.
Sulphur District Ranger Eric Freels:
Freels will step in as the Sulphur District Ranger in Grand County on May 23, 2022. He currently serves as the deputy district ranger on the North River and Lee Ranger Districts of the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests. The area is busy with partnerships and is the closest ranger district to the Washington, D.C., area. Prior to this position, Freels worked in wildlife in the Grand Valley Ranger District of the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, and Gunnison National Forests. He also worked in northern California, Arizona, Oregon, and northern Colorado. Eric started his Forest Service career in Steamboat Springs on the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests as a wildlife technician in 2001. He and his wife and daughter are extremely excited to come back to Colorado and become part of the Grand County community.