State foresters, valued partners head to Washington state for national annual conference

Now en route: the nation’s state foresters, along with their closest partners, will be traveling to the Columbia River Gorge to attend next week’s NASF annual meeting, hosted by the Washington Department of Natural Resources.

WASHINGTON—For more than a century, state foresters have worked to ensure the sustainable management of America’s forests. And while trees meet every day needs for wood, paper, clean air, clean water, and outdoor recreation, most Americans do not connect trees to their daily lives.

Fortunately, this is changing. Forests are truly being rediscovered as America’s greatest renewable natural resource. How, why, and to what effect this change is occurring is the subject of the National Association of State Foresters’ 2022 Annual Meeting in Stevenson, Washington.

“We have put together a program for this year’s annual meeting in keeping with its theme: Giving Forests Credit,” said Christopher Martin, NASF president and Connecticut state forester. “Catastrophic wildfires and pandemic-induced shortages have added forests to the list of topics discussed at dinner tables across the United States. Now international corporations and governments worldwide—including our own federal government—are employing forests in their initiatives to create more environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable futures.”

“Our speaker slate for this meeting includes representatives from the companies, organizations, and agencies at the forefront of putting forests to work in the fight against climate change,” Martin continued. “We are excited to give our conference attendees a full week to explore growth opportunities for wood product markets, sector partnerships, and emerging biotechnologies with their colleagues, new and known.”

This year’s state foresters’ meeting will be held in cooperation with the Washington Department of Natural Resources.

“Every year, the state foresters’ annual meeting provides us with a venue for sharing best practices, lessons learned, and success stories. This kind of sharing is essential to the health, productivity, and resilience of our nation’s forests,” said George Geissler, Washington state forester. “We are honored to host this year’s NASF Annual Meeting, where we, as a collective, will work to advance our shared interest in boosting forest health and reducing wildfire risk in our respective states and across America.”

On Monday and Tuesday, state foresters will be getting down to business, reviewing and approving budgets, orienting new members, and setting policy priorities that will guide and enhance the work of state forestry agencies nationwide.

On Wednesday, 180 attendees will kick off the morning with a keynote from Washington Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz and a panel discussion with USDA Natural Resources and Environment Under Secretary Homer Wilkes and USDA Forest Service Deputy Chief of State and Private Forestry Jaelith Hall-Rivera. At lunch, five men and women will be recognized for their contributions to state and private forestry, after which three general sessions will follow.

Thursday’s agenda will take state foresters and their guests outdoors to witness the interplay between forest management and wildland fire in the Columbia River Gorge. There, visitors will have the chance to traverse a series of trails (including the Pacific Crest Trail), learn from area experts, and enjoy spectacular views.

The 2022 NASF Annual Meeting would not be possible without the generous support of its sponsors. This year’s Walnut Sponsors are Aero-Flite, the USDA Forest Service, and Dauntless Air. Chestnut-level sponsorship was provided by ESRI. Oak Sponsors include Fire Boss, G.R. Manufacturing, Inc., John Deere, Technosylva, and Perimeter Solutions. Pine Sponsors are BLAZETAMER USA and the Sustainable Forestry Initiative.

Media Contact: Whitney Forman-Cook at

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