Hubbard tapped as USDA undersecretary for natural resources

President Trump appoints James Hubbard to critically important USDA undersecretary role responsible for overseeing the Forest Service.

WASHINGTON—The National Association of State Foresters fully supports President Donald Trump’s appointment of James Hubbard, a former state forester and deputy chief of USDA Forest Service’s State and Private Forestry, to lead the Agriculture Department’s Natural Resources and Environment mission area as undersecretary.

“The nation’s 59 state and territorial foresters couldn’t have been more pleased to hear of Jim’s appointment,” said George Geissler, NASF president and Oklahoma state forester. “For 10 years, Jim served as deputy chief of State and Private Forestry, managing all of the Forest Service’s cooperative forestry programs and its fire and aviation division, which accounts for half of the agency’s total budget. This experience, combined with 20 years of service as Colorado’s state forester, has made Jim both keenly aware of the risks posed by cross-boundary forest threats and aptly equipped to address these threats in collaborative, cost-effective ways.”

Prior to serving as a Forest Service deputy chief, Hubbard was the director for the Office of Wildland Fire Coordination at the Interior Department, where he oversaw the implementation of the National Fire Plan he helped develop as a state forester. He also worked for the Colorado Forest Service for a total of 35 years and served as president of NASF in 1990. In 2011, Jim was the recipient of the NASF Lifetime Achievement Award, and in 2016, the NASF Foundation renamed its signature internship program after him.

“Jim has been a tremendously effective leader in forestry for decades because he truly understands the complexities of cross-boundary management,” said Jay Farrell, NASF executive director. “We welcome the wealth of knowledge Jim brings to his new post and look forward to advancing comprehensive, landscape-scale forest management nationwide, together in partnership.”

Media Contact: Whitney Forman-Cook at or 202-624-5417

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