How To Establish Projects through the RM-CESU

Guidelines for agency managers or researchers

  1. Verify that your project is appropriate for the RM-CESU agreement. The Executive Committee Member for your agency can give final approval (see agency contacts)
  2. Contact your agency's procurement or contracting officer for necessary paperwork, specifying that you will be using the RM-CESU agreement:

Administrative Steps for Initiating an IMR RM-CESU Task Agreements

  1. Contact RM-CESU NPS Research Coordinator (RC) - Brendan Moynahan (406-243-4449; at the earliest possible date to discuss your project.
  2. Confirm ATR certification: NPS Master ATR Certification List.
  3. Obtain the current required forms and guidance from the RC or here.
  4. Prepare draft documents (incl. TA Template with SOW/budget and Justification). Justification Instructions
  5. Submit drafts to RC for review and approval.
  6. Request SF-424; SF-424A and SF424B forms from Partner.
  7. Submit FBMS Purchase Request and Attachments (incl. TA Template, Budget, Justification, and SF-424/424A/424B).
  8. IMR Financial Assistance processes the TA and notifies all parties when the TA is executed.
  9. For Modification, use Modification Template

Note: This guidance is focused on initiating CESU projects through the IMR Financial Assistance Office. Consult with your RC as to whether your project should be processed through IMR or another Financial Assistance Office as the process and forms may differ. For those projects processed through the WASO Financial Assistance Office additional information can be found at or by emailing


Brittney Linford, Procurement Analyst, BLM-Montana State Office, 406-896-5188 or

Eleni Sarris, Grants Management Specialist, BLM-Colorado State Office, 303-239- 3908 or

Chris Shaver, Lead Grants Management Officer, BLM-Idaho State Office, 208-373-3915 or

Robert Tichac, Contract Specialist, BLM-Wyoming State Office,

Faith D. Graves, 703-648-7356 or

  1. The institutional partner (university) submits a proposal along with an SF-424 and an SF-424A to the USGS cost center for funding. Typically proposals are developed through close consultation between a USGS scientist and a member of the university faculty. The USGS principal investigator submits a requisition request to the cost center.
  2. If approved, the cost center forwards the proposal with an official DI-1 to HQ Office of Acquisition and Grants. The proposal is then funded through a Research Cooperative Project Award from USGS to the university under authority of a Master CESU Agreement. Research Cooperative Project Awards should be processed through the administrative officer of the originating USGS cost center in accordance with delegated procurement authority.
Cindy Gordon, 970-498-1172 or
Lindsey Naft, 406-247-7684 or

CESU Procedures -- Noller Herbert, Acting NRCS National CESU Coordinator at 202-720-2520 or

Cooperative Agreement procedures -- Christopher Watkins, Grants and Agreement Specialist at 817-509-3509 or

Sherry Whitaker, CESU Grants Officer Technical Representative U.S. Army Engineer Research & Development Center, 601-634-2990, 

Kathy Mitchell,

DoD CESU Fact Sheet

Mountain-Prairie Region: Tammy Mayne or Patrick McKenney;
Alaska Region: Rich Primmer, 907-786-3611;

For additional questions, contact your agency representative or the RM-CESU Coordinator

Establish Projects through the RM-CESU - Guidelines for faculty:

  1. Verify that your project is appropriate for the RM-CESU agreement. The Executive Committee Member at your institution can give final approval (see University contacts)
  2. Complete necessary agency paperwork (see agency contacts above)
  3. Contact your institution's grants/research personnel for necessary internal paperwork, specifying that you will be using the RM-CESU agreement.
  4. For additional questions, contact your university representative or the RM-CESU Coordinator.

Identify Appropriate Faculty to Collaborate on a CESU Project:

If you do not know who you would like to work with as experts for your research, education, or technical assistance project, there are several routes for identifying appropriate partners:

  1. Contact the RM-CESU Executive Coordinator at the University of Montana: Lisa Gerloff, 406-243-6936;
  2. Search the Expertise Directory.
  3. Contact the RM-CESU representative at the institution you are interested in working with.
  4. If you are working on an NPS project, contact Brendan Moynahan, NPS Research Coordinator,, 406-243-4449

Partnership in the RM-CESU

Becoming a partner in the Rocky Mountains CESU requires several steps in a process that may take several months to over a year to complete: 

  1. Establish initial contact with the RM-CESU Executive Coordinator at the University of Montana: Lisa Gerloff, 406-243-6936; to begin dialog regarding enrollment as a new partner
  2. Submit a formal letter of interest and application to the RM-CESU Executive Coordinator, Lisa Gerloff,
  3. If a majority of the Executive Committee agrees that the nomination appears to have merit, an invitation will be extended to the the proposed new member to attend the fall Executive Committee meeting.  This meeting is required.  It provides an opportunity for the proposed new member to make a presentation to the committee addressing the components of the application and to answer questions about its interest in the CESU and what it can bring to the CESU to strengthen it.
  4. The Executive Committee then considers the proposal and determines whether or not to accept the potential partner as a partner. Acceptance is by super majority (2/3rds or greater).
  5. An amendment to the RM-CESU MOU is prepared and the Executive Committee members (one per partner) sign the amendment acknowledging their acceptance of the new partner.
  6. The signed amendment is forwarded to the National CESU Council for ratification.
  7. Upon ratification by the RM-CESU Council the new partner takes a seat on the Executive Committee and all partners receive a copy of the amendment.