Welcome new Natural Resource Technicians (NRTs) to Team Ahtna

Published August 2017

(Left to right) John Leonhart’s background includes wildlife management and zoology. Trenton Culp’s background is in environmental science and wildlife biology. Jeff Hermanns’ background is forestry and fire science. Not pictured, Ray Stickwan. Ray’s background is in public safety (VPSO, Trooper, military police) and as a land technician.

The Ahtna Land Department has staffed up for the summer, bringing on several new Natural Resource Technicians. We extend a warm welcome to our Ahtna shareholder-owner employees John Leonhart, Ted Sanford, Ray Stickwan and Trenton Culp.

Natural Resource Technicians, or NRTs, are tasked with the patrolling and protection of Ahtna lands from unauthorized trespass, as well as any unauthorized disposal of waste, junk vehicles, appliances, garbage and hazardous materials; illegal hunting and fishing; criminal mischief and theft; removal of resources; theft or damage to cultural and historical sites; and, in some cases, armed and disorderly conduct. Each NRT is assigned a geographical area to patrol, often working outdoors in a variety of weather conditions and operating a number of modes of transportation, including trucks, ATVs, snowmachines, boats and airplanes. NRTs are usually the main points of contact with members of the public and are authorized to issue Ahtna Land Use Permits for those wishing to utilize/access Ahtna lands. In addition, NRTs work closely with state and federal agencies in trail maintenance, public access and fire management across the Ahtna Region. Other duties include collaborating with AITRC in development of wildlife projects and Ahtna Tribes in land-stewardship planning. NRTs are also an integral part in assisting with forest carbon-sequestration projects, including reporting, verification and inventory work.

There was a recent report of two armed males impersonating Ahtna employees near Chitina. Ahtna NRTs drive vehicles with the Ahtna logo on the side and shirts that read “Ahtna NRT.” Please be aware. Any related information or suspicious activity should be reported to the Troopers at (907) 822-3263 (Glennallen).