Department of Natural Resources

The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) develops and implements wildlife, fish, and forestry improvement activities and regulates hunting, fishing, and gathering on the Reservation. It also preserves cultural knowledge and practices as natural resources and provides many other services, including conservation enforcement, environmental protection, natural resource permits, historical preservation, and tribal enrollment.

DNR Main Line

Commissioner of Natural Resources:
Kelly Applegate

Executive Director of Natural Resources
Susan Klapel

Office Manage
Alyssa Welsh

The Agriculture division will establish, educate, and promote all aspects pertaining to Agriculture and Horticulture for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe. This division oversees all pasture and crop field properties for all Districts including crop research and development, property revitalization, sustainable farming practices, achieve food sovereignty, and research invests in highly lucrative future crops.

Agriculture Coordinator
Jon Houle

To be responsible for the protection, dissemination, maintenance, preservation and implementation of traditional knowledge and language from the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe. The Cultural Resources Division is responsible to create and implement the vision and strategy for Traditional Knowledge Revitalization that will enable efficient execution of learning for all of the members of the Band with a special emphasis on band member development while fostering a culture of servant leadership. Design, develop and implement a centralized and local learning opportunities and consistent content for all members and employees with a blended learning approach.

Cultural Resources Director
Todd Moilanen

To enroll eligible individuals into Mille Lacs Band and to maintain enrollment documentation. The Enrollment department is responsible for verifying the enrollment status of all band members and their descendent children.

Tribal Enrollments | Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe

Enrollments Manager
Jana Sam

Environmental Programs operates, administers, and coordinates activities associated with the Environmental Protection Agency and Band-funded programs. In addition, inspections of NPDES (stormwater) and Underground Storage Tanks are conducted to ensure environmental resource protection. Environmental Programs includes an air program, ground/surface water program, a water quality lab, and a Brownfield Response Program.

Land Management services are provided to Band members who have questions about land leases, purchases, probate, or other real estate activities.

Director of Land Management
Brandi Sam

The Resource Management Program includes operations and administration of fisheries, licensing, forestry, land maintenance, wildlife studies, investigations, and research projects.
Wildland/Forestry - To maintain DNR properties, provide access to band members for hunting, fishing and gathering. To protect Mille Lacs Band members and Mille Lacs Band property from wildfires and conduct prescribed burns to reduce hazardous fuels, aide in the regeneration of native plant species and create high quality wildlife habitat with the use of controlled fire. The department also strives to provide services that assist other cultural activities.
Fisheries – To restore, protect, stock, and maintain fisheries the Mille Lacs Band members use to subsistence harvest. In addition, to provide educational opportunities to youth as well as to protect Treaty Rights, culture, and sovereignty.

Jacob Horbacz

Wildlife Biologist
Jordan Williams

Fisheries Manager
Carl Klimah

Lead Licensing Agent
LeRoy Day

This program is to provide and advocate for the protection of Band’s cemeteries, traditional cultural places, and gathering areas within our exterior boundaries of the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe.
The tribal government’s archives department collects and preserves written materials for the Band and makes them available to researchers and other interested people.

Terry Kemper