Lifetime Service Award

Ross Youngblood
Ross Youngblood

ROSS YOUNGBLOOD was born circa 1911 and attended grade schools in California. Encouraged to study forestry, he decided on Oregon Agricultural College (Now Oregon State University). He worked various jobs such as sewing sacks on a thrasher, swamping, pruning grapes, driving trucks, pulling lumber from a green chain, working in a gold mine, and as a foreman of a large farm. He worked at times as a Special Student of the CCCs, an agent for Blister Rust Control, a range management specialist, a camp boss of a large Blister Rust forest camp, and on other similar work. He received his Forestry degree from Oregon in 1938. In 1939, he was hired by the 0 & C Administration as a forester working on CCC projects.

In 1942, he was assigned to timber management activity and transferred to the Portland Office with multiple responsibilities in blister rust control, fire control, public relations work, timber cruising, land examinations, and related land management efforts. In 1944, he was appointed as District Forester for what is now the Coos Bay district. In that capacity, he helped develop the O & C forest management program including  procedures for acquisition of rights of ways.

In 1957, Ross Youngblood transferred to the Medford District in Oregon as District Manager, (a new name for the position), undertaking multiple use responsibilities in one of the bureau’s most significant and demanding districts. One of his major accomplishments while there was to take action to withdraw O & C land one-quarter mile on each side of the Rogue River for recreation purposes, a major step in those days.

In 1962, Ross transferred to Fairbanks, Alaska, as district manager, where he assumed responsibility for engineering, lands and minerals management, fire control, forestry, and Land Office functions. During his brief time there he brought resource management into all programs under his responsibility. He then went to the Headquarters Office where he was responsible for a full range of program responsibilities involving the O&C lands in western Oregon.  His last responsibility as a bureau employee was as Chief of the BLM’s Branch of Access and Rights-of-Way.  His last responsibility as a bureau employee was as Chief of the bureau’s Branch of Access and Rights-of-Way Office in the headquarters office. He retired from the Bureau of Land Management in 1970, after a distinguished career as a public land manager, and a leader of employees.

The Award was presented at the Foundation’s Annual Meeting in Eugene, Oregon in September, 2003.