Joshua Lenart, Board Member
Although his dad’s a bird hunter and his brother a deer hunter, Joshua hunts elk. A chance encounter with a traditional archer in the Gallatin National Forest sealed his love affair with the Intermountain West. He promptly moved to Montana and began chasing wapiti across the public lands that support them. Joshua holds a MA in English from Montana State University and a PhD in Rhetoric and Writing Studies from the University of Utah. His research focuses on political discourse analysis and the environmental sciences as it relates to wildlife and public lands planning, policy, and management. Joshua has published several studies on land and wildlife management issues including a two-year study on mule deer and ways to bridge what many, mistakenly believe, are irreconcilable difference between Western land and wildlife stakeholders. He is deeply troubled by the prospect of a federal land transfer, and is actively creating research and social networks to raise opposition against a transfer. He lives with his family in Salt Lake City where he teaches technical communications for the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Utah. Feel free to email Joshua at with any issues, ideas, questions you have relating to wildlife and public lands in and around the Intermountain West.
Jay Banta, Co-Chair
Jay was raised in the farm country of the Salinas Valley of California. He developed a passion for all things outdoors at a very early age and was engaged in studying birds of all kinds by the time he was 7 or 8 years old. He fondly remembers his early hunting forays, riding his bike across his small community and going down to the river to chase quail, cottontails and an occasional duck.
This love of wildlife led him to a degree in wildlife management from Humboldt State University in 1978. Soon after, he embarked on a career as a wildlife technician, working on national wildlife refuges in California, Nevada, Minnesota, and Utah. This was followed by a six year tour as a Wildlife Biologist for the Department of Army in Oklahoma and then a transfer back to the National Wildlife Refuge System as the Refuge Manager at the Bill Williams NWR in Arizona. After a couple of hot years on Lake Havasu, he transferred back to his dream station, the Fish Springs NWR where he remained as the Refuge Manager for 19 years before retiring in March of 2010.
Aside from watching birds, Jay is a passionate spring turkey hunter and enjoys pursuing all upland birds in the fall. He views his work with BHA as a stellar opportunity to continue to contribute to the habitat conservation that has been core to his world for over 40 years.
He now lives in beautiful Torrey, UT and is the proud father of two wonderful kids and the most wonderful granddaughter in the whole world!
Chris Crockett, Treasurer
Chris has been involved in fisheries and natural resource management for over 15 years. He grew up in western Tennessee where his outdoor ethics were formed roaming 170,000 acres of the Land Between the Lakes Recreational Area. Six seasons on the North Slope of Alaska conducting fisheries research further influenced his appreciation of wild places and the vital need for sustainable resource management. In his current position as an Aquatic Biologist for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, he passionately protects and restores the state’s aquatic habitats and educates the public about the value of native fish and amphibians.
Chris is an avid upland bird hunter who enjoys pursuing the West’s many upland game species. He is especially enthralled with two iconic Western species, sage and sharp-tailed grouse, but his guilty pleasure is pursuing chukar partridge in the mountains of central and northern Utah. During the off-season he can be found hiking with his lovely wife Emily in the Wasatch Mountains, trying to convince his Llewellin setter Toolik to retrieve a training bumper, or kayak fishing on Utah Lake.