Wood's Distillery to Host Campaign Event for Greg Felt

For Immediate Release Salida Distillery hosts conversation with Greg Felt June 29

Greg Felt, independent candidate for Chaffee County commissioner, District 2, will host an informal evening of conversation with local citizens from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday June 29 at Wood’s High Mountain Distillery, 144 W. First St. in downtown Salida. Greg will listen to citizen concerns and ideas, address important local issues and share his experience in working to build strong communities and preserve the local character of the places we call home.

Greg is especially interested in hearing from citizens in the 25-45 age group, the folks who are working to build a future in Chaffee County, and computers will be available so attendees can register to vote or check to ensure their voter registration is up to date. Greg came to Chaffee County in 1985 to work as a river guide. In the 31 years since, he has started, built and sold a whitewater rafting company; owned a motel; and co-founded and operated ArkAnglers, the region’s premier fly-fishing guide service and fly shops.

From early on, Greg could see the interdependence of tourism-related businesses and the key role that natural resource management decisions could play in those relationships, which underpin the Chaffee County economy. “I got involved,” Greg said, “and the more I learned, the more I perceived the connections between different issues.” Greg’s involvement includes serving on the Upper Arkansas Water Conservancy District and Arkansas River Outfitters Association boards of directors, the AHRA Citizens Task Force, the Trust for Public Lands Colorado Advisory Board, the Governor’s Drought Task Force, the Chaffee County Visitors Bureau and the Colorado River Access Dispute Resolution Task Force. Known as a listener and mediator – as someone who can bring together conflicting positions and find common ground – Greg does not pretend to have all the answers.

“When you look beyond the river and our inspiring mountains, the real asset of Chaffee County is its people – the fourth-generation cattleman to the newly arrived ski technician, the over-qualified barista to the recently retired physician. “I will actively draw on the knowledge and expertise of the full spectrum of our citizens as we work to address the county issues that lie ahead.”

Anyone unable to attend Wednesday’s event will have another opportunity to meet Greg from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. July 26 at Benson’s Tavern and Beer Garden, 128 N. F St. in downtown Salida.

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Greg Felt shows off a brown trout caught in the upper Arkansas River. An independent candidate for District 2 Chaffee County commissioner, Greg will be available to speak with citizens about important local issues from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday June 29 at Wood’s High Mountain Distillery, 144 W. First St., Salida.

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  • I am so happy to see a young person stepping up, but in this case, why elect the inexperienced student when we can have his mentor and teacher, Bill Dvorak? I'd encourage Greg to run for the City Council, get some experience in leading and working through administrative problem solving and team building....then run again for county commissioner.

  • Elizabeth, Greg does not live in Salida proper. This means he cannot run for City Council even if he were interested. Given his experience on multiple organizations, as listed, and his obvious thoughtfulness on the Upper Ark, he can do the job with more than adequate skill.

  • I appreciate the recognition of my relative youth in this campaign but to characterize a 51 year-old man as not fit for the office of county commissioner due to his age is ridiculous. I have tried to stay away from comparisons between Bill Dvorak and myself during this campaign and focus instead on what I will bring to the equation. That remains my goal. But there are a few assertions here that I do need to address. I am not Bill Dvorak’s student and he is not my mentor. I trained as a river guide with him in 1984. I was 19 years old. He then became my employer and I worked for him seasonally from 1985 to 1991, first as a guide and trip leader, later as manager of his Arkansas River business. For the last 25 years I have made a successful living as a whitewater and fly-fishing outfitter. During that time I have not sought advice or insight or assistance from Bill Dvorak. Nevertheless, I built and sold a very successful whitewater rafting business and then, with my business partner in ArkAnglers, became the primary architect of what has become the regionally significant fly-fishing market on the Arkansas River. Leading, administrative problem-solving, and team building were essential to those successes.

    During those 25 years I also worked in a variety of capacities to strengthen and protect our natural resources and access thereto. These efforts include: 1) Serving six years on the Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area Citizens Task Force, including three years as Chairman (2002-2004), during which we took the AHRA through its first management plan review. 2) Serving ten years and counting as a director of the Upper Arkansas Water Conservancy District, including six years as Board Secretary and eight years as Storage Committee Chairman. 3) Serving twice, from 2000-2002 and again in 2010, on Cabinet or Governor appointed task forces to address the “right to float” issue in Colorado. I served as an expert witness in hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee and co-authored the report to the governor in 2010. 4) Serving five years and counting on the Colorado Board of the Trust for Public Land, providing oversight and guidance to an entity that has been foundational to many of the conservation easements granted in Chaffee County, including many held by the Land Trust of the Upper Arkansas and the Colorado Cattlemen’s Association Land Trust. 5) Serving in 2011 and 2013 at the request of the Executive Director of the Department of Natural Resources on the stakeholder committees charged with interviewing finalists for the position of Director of Colorado Parks and Wildlife. 6) Serving since 2009 on the Advisory Board to the Office of Outfitter Registration (DORA) and helping to lead that agency through its Sunset Review and Renewal. 7) Serving as a Director of the Colorado River Outfitters Association (Chairman 1996), Director of the Arkansas River Outfitters Association (Vice-Chair 1999-2002), Outfitter Representative to the Governor’s Drought Task Force (2002-2003), Director Chaffee County Visitors Bureau (Vice-Chair 2002-2004), Advisor to the Colorado Mountain College Fishing Guide Program (2007-Present).

    These appointments all required leadership, administrative problem-solving, and team-building. In fact, those skills, coupled with knowledge on the issues, are exactly why I was recruited for these roles in the first place!

    I have never met Ms. Eckler. I offered to meet with her the last time she mischaracterized me on social media but she declined. Her projections about me and my relationship to Bill Dvorak are either reiterations of other peoples’ misstatements or inferences she is drawing from limited information or fabrications entirely. Whatever the source, I hope this will set the record straight. All that I have learned in business and in my civic commitments over the last 25 years will be the foundation for how I conduct myself as Chaffee County Commissioner.

  • To compare someone like Greg Felt to Bill Dvorak is ludicrous. The 2 couldn't be further apart, which in my opinion is a very good thing. I have known Greg AND Bill for many years, and firmly believe Greg to be the better man for the job.

    For one thing, Greg has never been arrested and fined for poaching elk on private property like Bill Dvorak has, not that Greg would ever even consider doing something like that.

    Interestingly enough though, Bill was arrested with co conspirator Jerry Mallet, who at the time was a county commissioner. Perhaps he thinks this incident qualifies him to be a commissioner himself ? I would hope not. It does however say a lot about his honesty, integrity, and perhaps that he feels himself to be above the law ?

    Not for me to say though, however you SHOULD read the attached DOW report for the full story, and then cast your vote for Greg Felt for County Commissioner. Honesty and Integrity is what Chaffee County needs.

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