Becky Hyde of Paisley has spent decades working as a rancher in Eastern Oregon, while serving countless hours on various commissions in support of issues related to environment, wildlife, fish and ranching. Now she will take on matters affecting the entire state after being appointed to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife Commission.
Hyde was appointed to the ODFW Commission by Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, to serve a four-year term on a council of seven commissioners addressing statewide issues regarding fish and wildlife resources such as the often contentious matter of wolves and sage-grouse, water issues and endangered species, wildlife resources, fish hatcheries, hunting and fishing access and more.
Hyde, a rancher by trade, splits her time in multiple counties at the family’s ranches when not actively involved in various committees and coalitions addressing concerns and needs of issues regarding public and private lands. Hyde was among several appointments to the ODFW Commission unanimously approved on Wednesday, Nov. 20.
Hyde was heavily involved in tricky sage-grouse habitat restoration negotiations between ranchers and environmental groups that ultimately prevented the Greater Western Sage-Grouse from being listed as an endangered species. She has been involved in a group dubbed “the Coalition of the Willing” in Klamath County, addressing water users needs and water rights of Klamath tribes in the ongoing efforts to protect endangered suckers in the Klamath Basin. She has also been involved in wolf plans – an issue near and dear to her as the Hyde family’s ranches have been directly impacted by wolf attacks.
“The Commission is dealing with serious issues surrounding fish and wildlife,” said Hyde. “As a rancher I have worked on water issues for several decades, and I have been very involved in resource conflict. I am thankful the Commission is giving a voice to communities on the eastern side of the Cascades.”
Hyde’s experience working on tricky negotiations will come in value, being able to find common ground on issues that often stoke great controversy. While her first meeting as a Commission member doesn’t occur until December, she has already been fielding phone calls from Oregon Cattlemen’s Association and the Farm Bureau to environmental groups to discuss issues facing the ODFW Commission.
While Hyde identifies as Republican, she prides herself on being able to work and negotiate across political spectrums and maintain a fruitful dialogue during tricky topics.
“We share a deep care for land and fish and wildlife in our communities, these are basic deep things we need to not forget when we get into these deep conversations,” explained Hyde.
ODFW Commission is headquartered in Salem, with regional offices in Clackamas County and La Grande, along with 10 district offices statewide. Commissioners are tasked with formulating general state programs and policies for management and conservation for fish and wildlife resources while determining limitations on recreational and commercial take.