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Mike King, Executive Director

Date appointed: 1/5/11

Senate Committee hearing date: 1/27/11

Senate Committee hearing vote: Passed Committee vote - Unanimously favorable recommendation

Senate vote date: February 3, 2011

Senate vote: Confirmed - 33-0

Salary: $146,040


"Colorado is known for our spectacular natural beauty, abundant wildlife and unparalleled recreational opportunities, Gov. John Hickenlooper said. Striking the right balance between resource development and conservation is what good stewardship of our natural resources is all about. Mike King has the collaborative skills needed to bring disparate interests together to responsibly manage these resources."


As the Executive Director of the Department of Natural Resources since 2010, Mike King is responsible for navigating the agency through significant reorganization, regulatory accomplishments and landscape-scale protection. King oversees the department’s budget of $263 million, seven divisions and about 1,500 employees.


King guided the creation of Colorado Parks and Wildlife, a merger of two divisions that serves as an example of Gov. John Hickenlooper’s efforts to shape a more efficient state government. King shepherded the Colorado Geological Survey from DNR to the Colorado School of Mines, where it can more cost-effectively serve Coloradans as a critical source of research and information.


King has executed three major regulatory initiatives to balance development of our oil and gas resources and protect the environment and human communities. He guided a collaborative process with the U.S. Forest Service and the public to develop a Colorado Roadless Rule that increases safeguards and preservation of our spectacular forests. He has overseen a period of record revenues for the Colorado State Land Board, which raises money for K-12 education in the state. He has played an important role in resolving water allocation challenges between Colorado’s Western Slope and Front Range. One of his priority missions is bringing Colorado youth into the outdoors and natural resource-focused careers.


King previously served as the Assistant Director for Lands, Minerals and Energy Policy; the Deputy Director of the Department of Natural Resources; worked in the Colorado Division of Wildlife; and was an Assistant Attorney General.


King is a native of Colorado’s Western Slope. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Colorado, a J.D. from the Sturm College of Law at the University of Denver and a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Colorado-Denver’s Graduate School of Public Affairs.


About the Department of Natural Resources:

The Department develops, preserves, and enhances the state’s natural resources for the benefit and enjoyment of current and future citizens and visitors. The Department pursues this objective through 10 divisions: Division of Wildlife, Colorado State Parks, Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, Division of Water Resources, Colorado Water Conservation Board, Colorado Geological Survey, Colorado State Land Board, Division of Reclamation Mining and Safety, Division of Forestry, and the Inter-basin Compact Committee.