Friday, September 6, 2013

DNR Sec. Stepp Spins Center Takeaway From Wildlife Federation

The DNR plays favorites by arbitrarily taking away a DNR wildlife center from Wisconsin Wildlife Federation (WWF) management, and funding, too.

DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp originally wanted install a gun range there, though that would have ended school tours. The discredited 'sportsmen's group' that just lost a grant even too politicized for Walker was in on the action, as this timeline shows.

Basically, this is the DNR showing its one-dimensional, pro-NRA face.

All the colorization and capitalization below is the DNR's:

From: Lamers, Holly J - DNR On Behalf Of Stepp, Cathy L - DNR
Sent: Friday, September 06, 2013 10:35 AM
Subject: MacKenzie Center

Good morning, DNR Colleagues,

I want to share the below message with you as it will be going out to the Statewide Press Corps soon.

Cathy Stepp
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Madison, WI 53703


We are thankful to members of the public who support the Mackenzie Center.  We are excited at the opportunity to re-invigorate the programming at MacKenzie and will be relying on the input of school groups, users and professional organizations as we put our curriculum together.

By taking responsibility for the MacKenzie Center, we are able to bring to life the vision we had for MacKenzie – environmental education for school-aged children and outdoors skills and mentorship training to help recruit and retain hunters, anglers and trappers. We attempted to find a private/public partnership that would help us deliver this vision, but we did not receive a proposal that met our needs. For me, status quo was not an option.

I want to assure you, as I have stated all along, we want: 1) a vibrant environmental education program at MacKenzie; and 2) use MacKenzie to address our decline in hunters, anglers and trappers through innovative recruitment and retention strategies.

We are thankful to the legislature for their support and funding which they included in the state budget. They are expecting us to deliver fresh, exciting, and meaningful programs. As I have said throughout this process, we are also thankful to the Wisconsin Wildlife Federation (WWF) for their contributions to the MacKenzie Center over the last several years, and we appreciate their involvement in providing programming during this transition. 

It is now time to focus on the future and move on. We’ve appointed a very talented individual to lead our transition at MacKenzie. He understands our vision and the need for frugality without compromising quality.

We’ve had excellent success incorporating Lean 6 Sigma principles into our business practices in the past year. We see MacKenzie as another excellent opportunity to improve efficiency and provide great service. We will address the funding through prioritizing work and shifting resources.

The DNR has operated MacKenzie since the 1930s; it has a storied and rich history within the Department, and we will honor that tradition and move forward. Again, we appreciate the Federations involvement for the past 7 years, and now it is time for a new chapter with the DNR again taking responsibility to operate the facility as we’ve done for over 70 years.

We will reach out to the Friends groups at MacKenzie, as well as local officials and organizations. We look forward to input from many of the passionate educators who contacted us earlier this year. We are going to be working with our talented staff to develop vibrant outdoor and environmental programs and will be evaluating how we keep today's kids excited and engaged about the outdoors.


Gareth said...

Yes, keep it up Cathy. Going out of your way to create enemies always comes back to bite you in the ass. This bunch is not very subtle. Well done.

MadCityVoter said...

What is "Lean 6 Sigma"?

Also I think the DNR needs a proofreader. And a leader who can write coherently, but first things first.

Anonymous said...

So - they have the staff to do this ?

Anonymous said...


Six Sigma is a specific type of approach that is based on actual data.
The program aims to get businesses equipped with the proper Six Sigma tools and methodology in order to carry out projects that provide quantifiable business results. Back in 1999, GE Capital achieved a $2 Billion savings via the use of Six Sigma.
Processes are enhanced by having control over variation and comprehending the complexities inside of them. The result is more predictable business processes.
Six Sigma is a lot more than training. Students are called “Belts” (The Green Belt and Black Belt are typically the most popular, but there are other belt levels). Every pupil has to have a project to focus upon, and it has to be a project that is authorized by his or her managers or upper level executives/bosses.
Who Are The Champions?

Champions are managers/executives that lead Six Sigma with specific projects that they back for the company.
These individuals get instruction in regards to the fundamental principles involving Six Sigma along with its methods. The goal is to select projects that have a purpose for company objectives.
Champions have the responsibility to select employees to become “Belts” and teach project leaders.
The Champions are really needed to incorporate Six Sigma methods within the company and to back projects for the business.
- See more at:

CJ said...

An interesting comment from CogDis's "Robin Vos Runs!" article.

"The WDNR & Walker administration removal of funding for the WWF MacKenzie Center is one more example of the Wisconsin BLACKLIST in action. All the WWF managers/directors at the MacKenzie Center are members of the Wisconsin BLACKLIST because they either signed the Walker recall or have donated to a democratic politician or candidate.

"This whole episode has it's basis in destroying the lives of any organization or individual that dared to sign the Walker recall petitions or supported a Democrat for statewide office.

$500,000 up front is but a small amount to give towards the achievement of ideological purity in Wisconsin. ..."

I had been pondering why the WDNR would prematurely pull their funding. I think the comment above connected one of the dots.

If you could tie blacklisting to the WDNR's "decision making process" it would make one hell of a story.

Betsey said...

The new plans for MacKenzie sound so excitingly . . . . vague.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

That's distressing. I've done some work with the folks at Mackenzie, and they are amazing and lovely people.

The Center is also a great place. I suppose it will be allowed to degrade, now, and fall into disrepair because we can only afford tax cuts, roads, and mines, these days.