(April 15, 2019 – DALLAS) – DSC is pleased that the U.S. Senate voted to confirm David Bernhardt, President Trump’s nominee, to serve as Secretary of the Department of the Interior (DOI). DSC has supported this nomination since the beginning because of Bernhardt’s dedication to the sportsmen’s community. He was confirmed in a bipartisan vote of 56-41.
DSC looks forward to working closely with Bernhardt, who was a keynote speaker at last year’s DSC convention.
In his new role, Bernhardt will be responsible for protecting U.S. natural resources, which include federal lands and overseeing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It is important for hunters everywhere that this position is now filled by an ardent proponent of continued access to public lands and a champion of land and animal conservation.
DSC Executive Director Corey Mason said, “We are thrilled with the selection of David Bernhardt as Secretary of the Interior. He has clearly and repeatedly demonstrated his commitment to our nation’s natural resources and sportsmen. We look forward to working closely with Secretary Bernhardt and his staff on domestic and international wildlife management needs and issues.”
As an avid sportsman, Bernhardt has consistently demonstrated his personal commitment to increasing public access opportunities for sportsmen and women, as well as promoting sound fish and wildlife conservation policies while working to balance the DOI mission.
During his time as Acting Secretary and Deputy Secretary of the DOI, Bernhardt issued and oversaw the implementation of orders which expanded hunting and fishing opportunities within the National Wildlife Refuge System. He promoted efforts to advance conservation measures of big game winter range and migration corridors and recognized outdoor recreation values during disposal or exchange of public lands. Most recently, Bernhardt signed an order directing DOI bureaus to implement an important comprehensive sportsmen’s package, the John Dingell Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act (S. 47).
Bernhardt began work for the DOI in 2001. He served Secretary Gale Norton as a Deputy Solicitor, Deputy Chief of Staff and Counselor to the Secretary, and as Director of Congressional and Legislative Affairs and Counselor to the Secretary. Prior to his role as Deputy Secretary of the DOI, Bernhardt served on the Board of Game and Inland Fisheries for the Commonwealth of Virginia.
A native of Rifle, Colorado, Bernhardt earned a B.A. from the University of Northern Colorado. He graduated with honors from the George Washington University National Law Center and is admitted to various state and federal court bars. He and his wife, Gena Bernhardt, have two children and reside in Arlington, Virginia.
DSC congratulates Bernhardt and offers its support and gratitude for his willingness to take on such an important role.
A member of IUCN and FACE, DSC is a mission-focused conservation organization, funded by hunters from around the world. With an administrative staff of less than 15 and a volunteer army of 500, DSC hosts the Greatest Hunters Convention on the Planet™ that raises funds for grants in conservation, outdoor education and hunter advocacy. In the past five years, more than $5 million has been channeled to qualified projects, organizations and programs in support of that mission.