Rick Cables became the director of Colorado Parks and Wildlife in July of 2011. He oversees a division of nearly 900 employees, and one that was created by merging the former Division of Wildlife and Colorado State Parks. The merger was approved by state lawmakers and signed into law by Governor John Hickenlooper in June of 2011.
Cables came to CPW from the U.S. Forest Service, where he had served as the Regional Forester for the Rocky Mountain Region since 2001. As Regional Forester he was responsible for the administration of over 22 million acres in 17 national forests and 7 national grasslands, and cooperative efforts with state and private landowners in Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and eastern Wyoming.
A Pueblo native, Cables graduated from Northern Arizona University Forestry School in 1976. After serving on several national forests in New Mexico and Arizona, he served two years in the USFS Washington Office before he was selected to attend the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania in 1989-1990.
In 1990 Cables was promoted to Forest Supervisor of the White Mountain National Forest in New Hampshire and Maine. In 1995 he became the Forest Supervisor of the Pike and San Isabel National Forests and Comanche and Cimarron National Grasslands in Colorado and Kansas.
Before becoming Regional Forester of the Rocky Mountain Region, Cables was Regional Forester of the Alaska Region, covering the Tongass and Chugach National Forests.
Rick and wife, Cindy, have three Children; Stewart, Wesley and Natalie.