New Santa Barbara District Ranger
updated: Jun 21, 2012, 3:16 PM
Source: Los Padres National Forest
Los Padres National Forest officials today announced the selection of John
"Pancho" Smith as the new Santa Barbara District Ranger. Smith is currently a
District Ranger on the Croatan National Forest in North Carolina.
Smith will replace Doug Dodge, who retired last month after serving as the Santa
Barbara District Ranger since 2009. In the interim, Bruce Emmens is managing the
District's day-to-day operations.
"Pancho has spent his entire career working to protect natural resources on
public lands," said Los Padres Forest Supervisor Peggy Hernandez. "He has
demonstrated a strong commitment to fulfilling the Forest Service mission, and
has an extensive background in fire and law enforcement that will serve him well
in his new position."
During his 40-year career in federal service, Smith has held a number of law
enforcement positions with the Forest Service and Arizona Game and Fish
Department. From 1971 to 1982, he worked as a seasonal fire employee in
wilderness patrol and fire prevention. He has also been an engine crewmember,
engine foreman, and fire crew foreman. From 1982 to 1991, Smith served as a game
range manager for the Arizona Game and Fish Department before returning to the
Forest Service as a law enforcement officer.
From 1996 to 2001, Smith was a supervisory law enforcement officer for the
national forests in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Between 2002 and 2008, he held the
position of Special Agent of the Forest Service's Southwest Region, and from
2008-2011 Smith served as the Regional Patrol Commander in the Southwest Region.
He earned a bachelor's degree in 1980 from the University of Arizona-Tucson in
range management, with an emphasis on wildlife. Smith has also completed
numerous other training courses including the Federal Law Enforcement Training
Academy in 1992.
"I am looking forward to joining the Los Padres, and working with the people of
Santa Barbara and the many visitors who come each year to enjoy these incredible
public lands," Smith said.
Smith reports for duty July 30.
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