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Western Public Lands

NWF organizer named ‘River Champion’

Bill Dvorak, longtime river guide, recognized for conservation work

Photo: Bill Dvorak in his element

By Judith Kohler | 3.20.14 
BOULDER, Colo. – Bill Dvorak, a longtime rafting and fishing guide and public lands advocate, has been recognized by American Rivers as one of the country’s “River Champions.”

Dvorak, the National Wildlife Federation’s public lands organizer in Colorado, was one of 20 people nominated by readers for his years of work to protect rivers in Colorado and throughout the region. He was part of the successful campaign to overhaul Colorado’s oil and gas rules in 2007 and diversify the membership of the state oil and gas regulatory body.

Dvorak has been involved in developing management plans for the Arkansas, Gunnison and Dolores rivers. He is an organizer and chairman of the Friends of Browns Canyon, which is promoting federal legislation to designate the canyon a national monument. Dvorak is working with the Colorado Wildlife Federation, Trout Unlimited and the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership on protecting fish, wildlife and the South Platte and North Platte rivers as the Bureau of Land Management considers oil and gas leases.

“It’s nice to be recognized for the work that you’ve done for years,” Dvorak said. “It’s important that we protect the rivers and streams and make sure that they have good flows. Everyone who comes to Colorado, whether to hunt or fish or recreate, cares about clean, fresh-flowing streams.”

Dvorak and his wife, Jaci, have operated Dvorak Expeditions in the Arkansas River Valley since 1985. They own the first outfitter license issued by the state of Colorado. The two spent many years teaching school in Australia and managing outdoor leadership courses for Outward Bound in New Zealand, Asia and England. 

A Wyoming native, Dvorak received his bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University in 1971 and his master’s from the University of Colorado in 1981.