Outstanding Public Lands Professional Awards - 2023

Technical/Operational Category

Gus Warr
Left to Right: Joe Mendez, BLM Associate State Director, Utah Gus Warr, BLM WH&B Specialist, Utah Greg Sheehan, BLM State Director, Utah

Outstanding Public Lands Professional Employee Award

Technical/Operational Category

Gus Warr

The Public Lands Foundation is proud to present the 2023 Outstanding Public Lands Professional Employee Award in the Technical/Operational category to Gus Warr, Wild Horse and Burro Specialist, Bureau of Land Management, Utah State Office.

 Under the direction of Mr. Warr, the Wild Horse and Burro Program in the state of Utah has seen many successes in horse and burro well-being, as well as conservation and management of the rangelands.   Experience and technical expertise have been the resounding attributes shaping a daily program of compassion for the animals and a deep commitment to managing healthy public lands.

While serving on the National Wild Horse and Burro Strategic Planning Team, Mr. Warr identified solutions and offered recommendations to the Bureau Director to improve rangeland health and the management of on-range wild horse and burro populations.

Under media and public scrutiny, Gus Warr has built a reputation as a highly respected and sensitive leader focusing on animal welfare all the while managing the rangelands.  Gus represents the Bureau locally and nationally, improving relationships with partners, animal welfare groups and members of the public while communicating with the national media.

Through planning and implementation of Appropriate Management Level (AML) herd reduction methods of birth control and off-range corral and pasture contracts, Gus has provided alternatives to over-use of the rangelands.

During a gather, communication is paramount, and the leadership Gus demonstrates is outstanding.  BLM leadership, law enforcement, and the wild horse and burro team, work together for the safety of the general public, keeping all well-informed.  As incident commander of dozens of complex and successful operations to gather animals in excess of appropriate management levels, Gus would guide the team to face the opposition with respect and integrity. This improved relations and cooperation with more accurate information delivered to the public.  Additionally, Gus is instrumental in training the next generation of specialists.

Gus has made, and continues to make, a significant difference.  When people think of the successes of the wild horse and burro program in BLM Utah, the first name that often comes to their mind is Gus Warr.


Because of his commitment to public land management, the Public Lands Foundation recognizes Gus Warr with its Outstanding Public Lands Professional Award in the Technical/Operational category for 2023.

September 25, 2023