Date: April 20, 2017
WASHINGTON – Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and Bureau of Reclamation Acting Commissioner David Murillo announced the appointment of Alan Mikkelsen of Montana as Reclamation's Deputy Commissioner.
“Alan Mikkelsen is a westerner who has decades of experience in all things water issues to include irrigation projects, Tribal water compacts, conservation, and even a long-term fishing guide,” said Secretary Zinke. “His decades of experience working to conserve water and improve water infrastructure in government and private sectors will be a huge asset as we work to strengthen water security and quality in the west.”
"Alan's extensive experience working with various stakeholders in the western United States will be a great asset for Reclamation," said Acting Commissioner David Murillo.
Mikkelsen has extensive experience in mediation and facilitation as the owner of a consulting business which focuses on work with Native American tribes and water users in the west. Mikkelsen has represented various public and private natural resource clients where he consulted on land acquisition, management, wildlife, timber and agricultural issues, and has represented various irrigation districts before the U.S. Congress. Mikkelsen served as the treasurer for the National Water Resources Association while representing Montana on NWRA's Board of Directors.
In 2001 and 2002, Mikkelsen served as former Congressman Denny Rehberg’s Chief of Staff and as the executive director of the Flathead Joint Board of Control. In addition, Mikkelsen is an experienced pilot who earned the Conservation Pilot of the Year award for his work on wildlife surveys and aerial photography from Barrow to Belize.
Mikkelsen also values water from an angling, conservation, and outdoor recreation business perspective as he is an Idaho-licensed fishing guide on the Clearwater River.
Mikkelsen studied Agricultural Economics at the University of Montana and Montana State University and took classes in water law, Indian law and Indian Water Law from the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado.