The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) is pleased to announce that Bruce E. Albright, District Administrator for the Buffalo-Red River Watershed District (BRRWD), has been honored as the 2014 Outstanding Watershed District Employee of the Year.
Bruce has served more than thirty years as the BRRWD’s administrator, a role that requires that he be not just the primary staff for the district, but its public face. He supports the Board of Managers, manages the District’s daily operations, budget, outreach efforts, and partnerships with other government agencies, nonprofits, consultants and the public.
In 2014, Bruce managed the successful completion of the multi-year Manston Slough project. This 1,500-plus acre wetland restoration that spanned six square miles brings significant benefits to the district. Better flood control, habitat restoration, increased water clarity to the downstream river, and other associated benefits from a wetland restoration are expected thanks to the project. Albright worked closely with the Department of Natural Resources and US Fish and Wildlife Service, who have significant land ownership within the project’s boundaries, as well as 32 private landowners, to make sure the project was a success. His ability to work with both government agencies and these landowners was key.
Bruce’s commitment to conservation and bringing everyone to the table has been a hallmark of his career. He’s worked with hundreds of landowners, negotiating all kinds of easements and buyouts and managing water problems. A good number of the BRRWD’s projects center around flood control or flood damage control, which can be especially challenging. Bruce’s honesty and fairness have earned him the respect of landowners, government staff at every level, and other conservation professionals.
“Bruce’s leadership is evident in the work of the Buffalo-Red River Watershed District,” BWSR Executive Director John Jaschke said. “His careful stewardship of the Manston Slough project is just one example of the great work he’s done in the watershed, work that benefits not just local citizens, but the whole state.”
The Outstanding Watershed District Employee of the Year is awarded at the Minnesota Association of Watershed Districts’ convention, held annually in December.