SOURCE: Nichols Kaster, PLLP

Nichols Kaster, PLLP

October 27, 2009 11:27 ET

DNR Manager, Represented by Nichols Kaster, PLLP, Reinstated After Arbitrator Decides No Misconduct Related to 2007 Game Warden's Conference

MINNEAPOLIS, MN--(Marketwire - October 27, 2009) - On October 21, 2009, Arbitrator Stephen F. Befort ordered that the Department of Natural Resources reinstate Captain Cathy Hamm, with full back pay and benefits. The arbitrator found no merit in the DNR's allegations that Capt. Hamm engaged in serious employee misconduct as it related to her involvement in the planning of a highly scrutinized 2007 game warden conference.

In a postscript to his opinion, Arbitrator Befort noted that "it is not surprising that a growing chorus of critics, both within and without the agency, concluded that the [game warden] conference simply was not worth the resulting diversion of resources." As he saw it though, "the DNR Commissioner's office needed to communicate clear directives... [i]ts failure to do so is the principal contributing factor to this controversy."

In response to the opinion, Captain Cathy Hamm stated, "I'm very happy with the decision. I'm glad that I have finally been heard. Now I look forward to getting back to work." Capt. Hamm's attorney Sofia Andersson-Stern stated, "We are pleased with Arbitrator Befort's decision. Cathy Hamm was unfairly blamed for the mistakes and poor judgment of the DNR's highest-ranking officials. This decision begins to rectify that."

Capt. Hamm was represented by James H. Kaster and Sofia B. Andersson-Stern from the law firm of Nichols Kaster, PLLP, which has offices in Minneapolis, Minnesota and San Francisco, California.

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Sofia Andersson-Stern
    Nichols Kaster, PLLP
    (612) 256-3240