State foresters elect new leadership, make history

State foresters elect their fiscal year 2023 leadership during NASF’s 102nd annual conference in Stevenson, Washington.

STEVENSON, Wash.—At this year’s annual meeting, the nation’s state foresters elected a new slate of officers to serve on the National Association of State Foresters’ governing executive committee. In doing so, the association made history: two of the four officers who will lead NASF in fiscal year 2023 are women.

Kacey KC, state forester of Nevada, will lead NASF as president in 2023. As the state forester and firewarden for the Nevada Division of Forestry (NDF), KC is responsible for the delivery of wildland fire protection and private forest landowner technical assistance statewide.

“It is an honor and privilege to serve my colleagues as president of NASF,” KC said. “I am most looking forward to helping the association develop partnerships at the national level that will improve collaboration on the ground where state foresters are already the leading conveners of shared stewardship and cross-boundary land management efforts.”

“Our work won’t stop there. In 2023, I also intend to set a plan in motion from Washington, D.C., that will empower all of NASF’s 59 members with new tools for employee retention and recruitment,” KC continued. “State foresters employ 27,000 men and women in any given year and the demands on that workforce are growing while the candidate pool for forestry and wildland fire jobs contracts. There’s no one solution to this problem—one size has never fit all for our members—but I am confident we can make a difference for state forestry agencies on this issue in the coming year.”

KC was appointed Nevada state forester and firewarden in 2018. She started her career with NDF in 2002 with the nursery and seedbank program and worked for the next ten years with state, local, and federal partners to reduce wildfire fuels in the state. With the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, KC worked with partners, landowners, and industry through the Sagebrush Ecosystem Program to find a collaborative and sustainable approach to sagebrush ecosystem management in the state. KC returned to forestry in 2015 as the deputy administrator of operations managing the natural resource, wildland fire management, aviation, and conservation camp programs.

KC is a Nevada native, University of Montana forestry graduate, and a Peace Corps alum. She was recently selected to serve as the state forester representative on the National Wildfire Mitigation and Management Commission and is a driving force behind the Nevada Shared Stewardship program.

NASF 2023 Officer Slate
From left to right: Kacey KC, Nevada; Scott Phillips, South Carolina; Ellen Shultzabarger, Pennsylvania; Christopher Martin, Connecticut

NASF also elected Scott Phillips, state forester of South Carolina, as the association’s new vice president and Ellen Shultzabarger, state forester of Pennsylvania, as its new treasurer. Christopher Martin, state forester of Connecticut, will serve on the executive committee as immediate past president. Each will serve a twelve-month term.

As her first order of business, KC appointed the following state foresters to chair NASF’s standing committees:

Chair: Russell Bozeman, State Forester for the Mississippi Forestry Commission

Chair: Tim Lowrimore, State Forester for the Georgia Forestry Commission

Chair: Peter Church, State Forester for the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, Bureau of Forest Fire Control and Forestry

Chair: John Erixson, State Forester for the Nebraska Forest Service

Chair: George Geissler, State Forester for the Washington Department of Natural Resources

To learn more about NASF, its members, and standing committees, visit

Media Contact: Whitney Forman-Cook at

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