UWP Board Member Dennis Murphy

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Board Vice Chair (2016)

Dennis had a 32-year career as a hydrologist for the Bureau of Land Management, including assessing a wide variety of issues including oil and gas activities, powerline and pipeline rights of way, livestock grazing, hard rock mining, and recreation activities. His work covered a very diverse landscape, from alpine tundra high in the San Juan’s to red rock canyon country along the Utah border. Both his employment with the BLM and his wife’s employment as an elementary school teacher are the primary reasons they landed in the Montrose area in 1978. 

Dennis has had a passion for learning, understanding and managing natural resources his entire life. Even as a kid he always had to know what kind of tree he was looking at or what kind of rock made up the local geology. His true passion is plants, which is why his bachelor’s degree is in forestry. Hydrology was his minor. He was always interested in all the natural sciences, and water just floated to the top (no pun intended). He finds a great deal of satisfaction in using his education and experience in dealing with rivers and water quality issues to better the community and region he lives in.

Being retired, Dennis engages in a lot of outdoor activities, including hiking, skiing, gardening, hunting and fishing. He and his wife have also been traveling abroad to try to make up for all the years of working and raising kids with little vacation time. Their 28-year-old son Ryan is employed in the Administration Department at Fort Lewis College in Durango. Their 26-year-old daughter Jennifer is an interior designer for a Front Range company. 

Dennis also still does a very limited amount of hydrologic consulting. Additionally, he does a fair amount of woodworking, including the building of acoustic guitars. He also reads a lot and plays guitar. Lastly, he likes working out at the swimming pool or at Golds Gym!