Wyoming Board on Geographic Names


The Wyoming Board on Geographic Names is an advisory Board established by  Executive Order 1995-7 to evaluate proposals concerning name changes, new names, and name controversies of geographic features and certain public places in the State of Wyoming and then making official recommendations to the United States Board on Geographic Names, who gives final determinations for standardizing the names of geographic and natural features.




Herbert W. Stoughton, Ph.D.: Chairman

John (Jack) Studley, PLS: Vice Chairman

Shelley Messer: Executive Director

contact: @ shelley.messer@wyo.gov or 307-777-5801


Calvin B Williams Cindy Brown

Dan White Janie  Nelson

Mary Agnes McAleenan         Jessica Otto

Scott Scherbel                               Jeffrey Hamerlinck

Scott Gerber       

The Wyoming Board of Geographic Names (WyoBGN) recognizes the need for open and candid communication concerning the naming and/or re-naming of geographic features within the State of Wyoming.  The WyoBGN seeks and considers input from all interested sources before rendering decisions.  This process may require several months, and is addressed at every scheduled meeting.  Inquiries concerning the naming or re-naming of any geographic feature should be submitted to Ms. Shelley Messer, WyoBGN Executive Director, State Engineers' Office.  Although any WyoBGN member can comment on a particular issue, it is the consensus of the members that inquiries should be directed to Ms. Messer, who has and maintains the official records of the organization.  [Reference: WyoBGN meeting: 16 November 2022].

Next meeting, November 1, 2023 in the State Engineer's Office Conference room

Google Meet joining info Video call link: https://meet.google.com/tde-njxm-imd

Or dial: ‪(US) +1 636-431-4753‬ PIN: ‪198 580 448‬#

Everyone is welcome to attend our meetings.

Agendas, Minutes, and Resources:

April 19, 2023 Preliminary Meeting Notes

November 16, 2022  Notes 

May 18, 2022 Notes                                                                                                          November 17, 2021 Notes 

May 19, 2021 Notes                                                                                                          November 18, 2020 Notes

May 20, 2020, Notes                                                                                                         November 2019 Notes 

May 30, 2019 Notes                                                                                                          June 2018 Notes

Useful Information: 

By-laws                                                                                                                             United States Board on Geographic Names Policies 

Name Proposal process                                                                                                Name Proposal Form 

The U.S. Board on Geographic Names (BGN) is a Federal body created in 1890 and established in its present form by Public Law in 1947 to maintain uniform geographic name usage throughout the Federal Government. The BGN comprises representatives of Federal agencies concerned with geographic information, population, ecology, and management of public lands.

Current Discussions:

Previous Recommendations:

19-April-2023 WBGN voted to recommend the change Falls River Basin to Fall River Basin

18-May-2022 The WBGN voted to recommend rejection of the proposal to name an unnamed feature Mount Jackson Pollock

Proposals to rename Mount Doane and Hayden Valley: WBGN voted to recommend: 

The name Mount Doane be changed to First People's Mountain.

The name Hayden Valley be retained.