US Navy SEAL Commander, State Senator, US Congressman, 52nd Secretary of Interior
The Honorable Ryan Zinke was born and raised in Montana and attended the University of Oregon where he was awarded All-PAC 10 honors and numerous other awards to include the University’s prestigious Emerald Cup Award for academic. leadership and athletic achievement. He then attended US Navy Officers Candidate School and Navy SEAL Training in 1985 and was assigned to SEAL Team ONE. Highlights of Commander Zinke’s twenty-three year career in Special Operations includes two tours of duty at SEAL Team SIX, Acting Commander of Special Forces in Iraq, Task Force Commander in Bosnia and Kosovo, and served as the “Dean” of Special Warfare training. He was awarded the Bronze Star for Combat. He retired in 2008 and was elected as a Montana State Senator and later twice elected as Montana’s sole member of the US House of Representatives. He served on the House Armed Services and Natural Resources committees. In 2016, Congressman Zinke was nominated by President Donald J. Trump and later confirmed as the first Montanan to serve in any Presidential Cabinet. Senator Orin Hatch, Utah, called Zinke “the Best Secretary of Interior in my 41 years of public service.” As Secretary, he championed restoring the voice of state and local communities in land and wildlife management decisions, was the leading architect behind of the Great American Outdoors Act which was the largest investment in our Nation’s history for National Parks and forests, established and protected wildlife corridors, increased public access for recreation and traditional use, and was the creator and champion of the American Energy “Dominance” policy. Former Interior Secretary Don Hodel noted that “Zinke was able to get done what President Reagan and I talked about but were never able to accomplish.” After 31 years of public service, President Trump accepted his resignation in 2019. The Honorable Ryan Zinke currently is the CEO of Continental Divide International (CDI) and serves on numerous boards. He holds an MBA in Finance, an MS in Global Leadership, and a BS in Geology. He is the author of American Commander and is married to the former Lolita Hand of Santa Barbara, has three children and two grandchildren.