Trout Unlimited’s Chris Wood, apparent front-runner of the Obama administration to head the Forest Service–and first choice among many sportsmen–is now out of the running. Instead, in a decision that will have important implications for outdoorsmen, President Obama has made the untraditional choice of Mississippi conservationist Homer Lee Wilkes–untraditional in that Wilkes lacks a forest-policy background.

According to this AP story in the Seattle Post Intelligencer, most conservation groups are encouraged by Wilkes’ strong conservation background. But not everyone is so happy:

_”As far back as anyone cares to recall, the undersecretary position was held by a Forest Service expert,” said Andy Stahl, executive director of Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics. . . .

Stahl said choosing Wilkes was “an indication of the relatively low priority the Obama administration places on the national forests.”

Check out the full article and tell us what you think.