John Walton Keys III (March 25, 1942 – May 30, 2008)[2] was the Commissioner of the United States Bureau of Reclamation from 2001 to 2006. He was also a college football official for 20 years in the Big Sky Conference.[2]

John W. Keys
Born(1942-03-25)March 25, 1942
DiedMay 30, 2008(2008-05-30) (aged 66)
Alma materGeorgia Tech, BYU
OccupationCommissioner of the United States Bureau of Reclamation (2001–2006)
Known forCollege football official

Early life and education edit

Keys graduated from high school in Sheffield, Alabama. He then received a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1964 and a master's degree in civil engineering from Brigham Young University in 1971. Keys also did further studies at Colorado State University.[3]

Career edit

Keys first began working with the Bureau of Reclamation as a civil and hydraulic engineer in 1964. In 1986, he was appointed the Northwest Regional Director, overseeing operations in Washington state, Oregon, Idaho, and parts of Montana and Wyoming. He retired from that position in 1998. For the next three years, Keys spent most of his time flying his personal aircraft for humanitarian purposes. He returned to the bureau when he was confirmed as commissioner in July 2001.[4] Keys left the position of commissioner in 2006, but was at times consulted by his successor, Bob Johnson.

Keys was an American football official for 40 years, including 20 years officiating college football games in the Big Sky Conference.[2] He was the referee of the 1998 NCAA Division I-AA Football Championship Game between UMass and Georgia Southern.[5][2]

Keys died on May 30, 2008, when the Cessna 172 he was piloting crashed in the Four Corners area.[6][7] He was a resident of Moab, Utah, at the time of his death.[3]

Legacy edit

In May 2009, the John W. Keys III Pump-Generating Power Plant at the Grand Coulee Dam was named in honor of Keys' service.[8]

References edit

  1. ^ "National Transportation Safety Board Aviation Accident Final Report, Accident Number SEA08FA146". NTSB. December 10, 2009. Retrieved February 21, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d "John Keys Obituary". June 4, 2008. Retrieved February 20, 2019.
  3. ^ a b "John W. Keys III; Oversaw Federal Water Projects". The Washington Post. 2008-06-08. Retrieved 2011-07-13.
  4. ^ Davidson, Lee (July 13, 2001). "Utahn confirmed as head of Reclamation". Deseret News. Salt Lake City.
  5. ^ "1998 NCAA Division I-AA Championship Game" (PDF). December 19, 1998. Retrieved February 20, 2019 – via
  6. ^ "Canyonlands plane crash claims 2 men". Deseret News. Salt Lake City. AP. June 1, 2008.
  7. ^ Winslow, Ben (March 9, 2009). "NTSB says pilot error in deadly Moab-area plane crash". Deseret News. Salt Lake City.
  8. ^ "John W. Keys, III Pump-Generating Plant Dedication Ceremony". United States Bureau of Reclamation. May 12, 2009. Retrieved February 21, 2019.

External links edit

  • Biography at the Bureau of Reclamation website