Friday, March 20, 2015

New WI DNR Deputy Secretary an insider, replacing biz ideologue

We'll wait and see how DNR insider Kurt Thiede works out as the new Deputy Secretary at the Wisconsin Deputy Secretary - - the official announcement from Secretary Cathy Stepp, in part, below.

But at first glance he seems to have little connection with Scott Walker's "chamber-of-commerce" cookie-cutter that produced former Deputy Secretary Matt Moroney, now Walker's newly-appointed senior adviser. I'll put the basics of Moroney's official DNR bio for comparison at the bottom.
From: Lamers, Holly J - DNR On Behalf Of Stepp, Cathy L - DNR
Sent: Friday, March 20, 2015 10:59 AM
Subject: DNR Deputy Secretary Announcement
Good morning Everybody! 
I'm excited to announce that the role of Deputy Secretary has been announced by Governor Walker. It is with extreme pleasure that I share with you that Kurt Thiede has accepted this position!  For those of you who have already had the opportunity to get to know Kurt over his years with our agency, it is no surprise to you why I'm thrilled to have him as part of the Secretary's Office.  
Kurt has served the agency for the past 4 years as the Division Administrator for our Land Division. He began his career with the Wildlife Management program as an LTE in 1999. In his time with the agency he has served as the Wildlife Management Regulation and Policy Specialist, the DNR Liaison to the Wisconsin Conservation Congress, and a Customer Service and Licensing Program Supervisor for Southern Wisconsin. Kurt has a Bachelor of Science in Wildlife Biology from the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point.
Deputy Secretary Matt Moroney was raised on a small family farm outside of Masonville, Iowa, where he fished and was a trapper. He graduated from Loras College in 1991 with a major in Political Science and Economics. He graduated the University of Iowa College of Law in 1994. He has been attorney at DeWitt Ross and Stevens the past two years, and was previously the Executive Director of the Metropolitan Builders Association of Greater Milwaukee.


Anonymous said...

As was said, we'll see. You'd think his appointment would be somewhat hopeful, but his email to DNR employees, below, sounds totally co-opted into the Walker/Stepp system - but maybe thats what he has to say. Again, we'll see.

"Dear Colleagues,

Four years ago I was given what was likely one of the most exciting opportunities of my life – to take on the role of leading the Land Division for the nation’s greatest natural resources agency. Now, I have yet another amazing, albeit daunting, opportunity – trying to fill the enormous shoes of an amazing Deputy Secretary, Matt Moroney.

I am thrilled for the opportunity and equally grateful and humbled by the trust that the Governor and Cathy have placed in me to continue to move the agency forward along the path the DLT has charted over the past four years.

As we have over the past four years, we will continue to implement the mission of the agency, using our values and vision as a guide. Further, to borrow the words you have all heard before…we will continue to use sound science and common sense and we will follow the law.

On a recent business trip out of state, I was approached by one of our customers. He identified me as a DNR employee. I proudly said, “Yes, I am.” He shared with me that he always appreciated the excellent customer service, knowledge and competence of the staff at the DNR when he has called for information. Completely unsolicited…he shared how much he appreciated your professionalism and exceptional customer service.

Over the next four years we will strive to continue to redefine our customers’ expectations of government. We will provide exceptional customer service, ensure transparency, and seek efficiencies while we provide memories for those who recreate on our lands and waters, take care of the lands and resources our citizens cherish, and ensure the health and safety of our air and water. I am very proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish together, and I am looking forward to challenging ourselves to raise the bar of excellence even further.

For those of you who may be wondering about the plans for filling the Land Administrator role. Sanjay Olson, my very talented, competent and capable Deputy will be serving as the Acting Land Division Administrator until such time that a permanent appointment is made.

I have come to know and work alongside many of you over the years…for those I have not yet had chance to meet…I look forward to the opportunity.


Kurt Thiede
Administrator – Land Division"

James Rowen said...

Thanks. Hadn't see that.

Anonymous said...

Maybe no one else wanted the job.

Anonymous said...

Who wrote this for him?

This is thick with the odor of PR BS.

Anonymous said...

A lot of Walker appointees seem to use the word "humbled" when describing how they feel about working for the people of WI. Synonyms for humbled: humiliate, abase, demean, lower, degrade, debase; mortify, shame, abash; informal cut down to size, deflate, make eat humble pie, take down a peg or two, settle someone's hash, make eat crow.

Is that how he really feels? Is WDNR really considered "the nation's greatest natural resources agency?" By whom? And does a man in his 50s really refer to a job opportunity as "amazing?"

Did Matt Moroney really have "enormous shoes?" Were his feet big or was he wearing clown shoes?

What was he selling the anonymous out-of-state "customer" who recognized him as working for DNR? Would someone really say "I have always appreciated the excellent customer service, knowledge and competence of the staff at DNR?" That sounds contrived. Wouldn't someone just say "nice job?"

Is he really proud of what DNR has accomplished in the past 4 years? It doesn't seem possible that cutting staff by one-third, as Walker has done, would lead to a better outcome for the environment so is he proud that DNR is failing in environmental protection?

Anonymous said...

"we will follow the law" Were there doubts that a state agency would do that?

Why is an "out of state" customer quoted? couldn't he find anyone in Wisconsin who appreciates the DNR?

Why is does he say his replacement is talented, competent and capable? Aren't competent and capable synonyms?

Anonymous said...

Thats whats a little disturbing about his email. It sounds like Walker and Stepp, who essentially say, practically word for word: "These position and funding cuts will give the DNR the opportunity to increase efficiency and effectiveness, as well as provide better customer service." Walker says the same about UW. Mere words that resonate in his idiot followers ears, but are pure BS.

Hope not, but this new guy sounds the same. Its all illusion and pretense. The DNR has been almost totally nueutered. Morale is pretty much 0 except among ass kissers.