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BY GARY BATLINER JR. The retirement of the Baby Boomer generation will have implications to forestry that will pro- vide both challenges and opportunities, including a chance for graduating forestry students to more rapidly advance into leadership positions. The Population Reference Bureau estimates that there are about 79 million Baby Boomers alive today. The Baby Boomers, comprised of indi- viduals born between the years of 1944 and 1964, make up roughly 25% of the United States population. Those con- sidered being part of Generation X, individuals born between the years 1964 and 1981, stand in line to fill both mid-management and upper-manage- ment positions, but there is a problem. Generation X is not large enough to fill all the positions that will be left vacant by the Baby Boomers, and Generation Y, individuals born between the years 1981 and 2000, lacks the experience to adequately replace key management positions. It is estimated that Generation X contains about 51 million people. Sufficient attention has not been given to the issue that arises with such a large population gap between generations. Only hypotheses can be made about the implications this gap will have on businesses and the economy. Research is needed to fully grasp the impact that will be made and how to cope with the management transition, but some interesting trends within the general population, and within the forest sector, are worth noting. Most noteworthy is the fact that there are roughly 75 million eager individuals in Generation Y, also known as “Millennials,” who may be on a fast-track for career advancement. The AARP estimates that in March 2012 there were about 154 million peo- ple in the civilian labor force. Roughly 39 percent were Baby Boomers, while Generation X and the Millennials com- prised 57 percent of the total labor force. This could set the stage for a competitive job market between the two generations. Two questions arise from these demographic trends. How do companies prepare for the inevitable turnover in management, and how can Millennials better pre- pare and position themselves for quick career advancement? Robert W. O’Hara, a business exit consultant for O’Hara and Company out of Chelmsford, MA, helps prepare business owners for their independ- ence and plan for the continued suc- cess of their businesses. O’Hara says that Baby Boomer business owners may have to delay their retirement by a few years in order to mentor and train individuals to replace current management. PHOTO COURTESY OF RON BOLDENOW Stephen Fitzgerald leads a lab on unevenaged management near the Metolius Research Natural Area, Deschutes National Forest, to Central Oregon Community College students. In This Issue: Baby Boomers Demographic Trends Pose Challenges and Opportunities for Forestry SOCIETY OF AMERICAN FORESTERS (CONTINUED ON PAGE 2) September/October 2013 Oregon • Washington State • Inland Empire • Alaska Societies Volume 58 • Number 4 Western Forester

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    The retirement ofthe Baby Boomergeneration will haveimplications toforestry that will pro-vide both challengesand opportunities,including a chancefor graduating forestry students tomore rapidly advance into leadershippositions. The Population ReferenceBureau estimates that there are about79 million Baby Boomers alive today.The Baby Boomers, comprised of indi-viduals born between the years of 1944and 1964, make up roughly 25% of theUnited States population. Those con-sidered being part of Generation X,individuals born between the years1964 and 1981, stand in line to fill bothmid-management and upper-manage-ment positions, but there is a problem.Generation X is not large enough to fillall the positions that will be left vacantby the Baby Boomers, and GenerationY, individuals born between the years1981 and 2000, lacks the experience toadequately replace key managementpositions.

    It is estimated that Generation Xcontains about 51 million people.Sufficient attention has not been givento the issue that arises with such a largepopulation gap between generations.Only hypotheses can be made aboutthe implications this gap will have onbusinesses and the economy. Researchis needed to fully grasp the impact that

    will be made and how to cope with themanagement transition, but someinteresting trends within the generalpopulation, and within the forest sector,are worth noting. Most noteworthy isthe fact that there are roughly 75 millioneager individuals in Generation Y, alsoknown as “Millennials,” who may be ona fast-track for career advancement.

    The AARP estimates that in March2012 there were about 154 million peo-ple in the civilian labor force. Roughly39 percent were Baby Boomers, whileGeneration X and the Millennials com-prised 57 percent of the total laborforce. This could set the stage for acompetitive job market between thetwo generations. Two questions arise

    from these demographic trends.How do companies prepare for theinevitable turnover in management,and how can Millennials better pre-pare and position themselves forquick career advancement?

    Robert W. O’Hara, a business exitconsultant for O’Hara and Companyout of Chelmsford, MA, helps preparebusiness owners for their independ-ence and plan for the continued suc-cess of their businesses. O’Hara saysthat Baby Boomer business ownersmay have to delay their retirement bya few years in order to mentor andtrain individuals to replace currentmanagement.


    Stephen Fitzgerald leads a lab on unevenaged management near the MetoliusResearch Natural Area, Deschutes National Forest, to Central OregonCommunity College students.

    In This Issue: Baby Boomers

    Demographic Trends Pose Challenges andOpportunities for Forestry

    S O C I E T Y O F A M E R I C A N F O R E S T E R S


    September/October 2013 Oregon • Washington State • Inland Empire • Alaska Societies Volume 58 • Number 4

    Western Forester

  • The trend of working to a later agehas already been seen with the loss ofpensions and the Great Recession,which has eroded home values andretirement savings. Some companiesmay find it difficult to afford payingboth the soon-to-be-retired and thehopeful Millennial looking to quicklyadvance his or her career. Employers’solutions may include using unpaidand low-pay internships, job-shadow-ing, continuing education, and tech-nology to meet short-run labor needs.

    In his March 2012 presentation atthe 9th Biennial Conference onUniversity Education in NaturalResources, Terry L. Sharik describedtrends in the natural resources pro-grams of the National Association ofUniversity Forest Resource Programs(NAUFRP) institutions. Sharik, profes-sor and dean of the School of ForestResources and Environmental Scienceat Michigan Technological University,presented data that showed a 13%

    decrease in enrollment in naturalresources programs across all regionsof the US between 1995 and 2005.Since 2005, however, there has been asteady increase in enrollment for allregions with the exception of the West,where enrollment has remained rela-tively flat.

    The data showed that the medianage for individuals within the laborforce who had a traditional forestrydegree was 51 years old, whereas themedian age of laborers with a naturalresource management degree was 40years old, and the median age oflaborers with an environmental sci-ence degree was just 34 years old. Thisis consistent with data that shows ashift in the types of degrees sought bystudents.

    Since 1980, as the data shows, theproportion of students graduatingwith a traditional forestry degree hasfallen from 48 percent to 15 percent.The proportion of students graduatingwith a degree in natural resource man-agement has risen from 22 percent in1980 to 37 percent as of 2009. A similartrend is seen with students graduatingwith degrees in fisheries and wildlife,the proportion of which has risen from16 percent to 23 percent.

    The shift occurred despite the factthat 90% of individuals (highestamong the 15 disciplines of naturalresources) with a traditional forestrydegree are employed and earn an aver-age of $53,000 a year. Sharik suggeststhat data is needed on the supply anddemand of people with forestrydegrees. It is estimated that only 13%of those with forestry degrees that areemployed work in their field of study.Most of them are miscellaneous man-agers, sales reps, firefighters, survey-ors, and cartographers. Do graduateswith forestry degrees choose to workin these fields, or are the jobs in theirfield just not out there?

    One possible explanation, asdescribed by Sharik, is the rise of spe-cialization within the discipline of nat-ural resource management. A hundredyears ago foresters were seen as man-agers of forested land and this encom-passed the traditional disciplines ofrangelands, watersheds, wildlife, andrecreation management. Specializationin each of these fields and others aroseas knowledge grew and data becamemore robust and readily shared andaccessed. Thus, foresters are increas-ingly seen as managers of extractivewood resources, while the other disci-plines have deemphasized the manip-


    Next Issue: FIA in the PNW

    Demographic Trends(CONTINUED FROM FRONT PAGE)


    Community college forest technologyprograms provide field experiencesto students. Here students discusstree marking in a lab on unevenagedmanagement near the MetoliusResearch Natural Area, DeschutesNational Forest.

    Western ForesterSociety of American Foresters

    4033 S.W. Canyon Rd. • Portland, OR 97221 • 503-224-8046 • FAX [email protected][email protected] •

    Editor: Lori Rasor • Assistant: Annie TomlinsonWestern Forester is published five times a year by the Oregon, Washington State,

    Inland Empire, and Alaska Societies’ SAF Northwest Office

    State Society Chairs

    Oregon: Ron Boldenow, 61962 Rawhide Dr.,Bend, OR 97701; 541-318-0579; [email protected]

    Washington State: Ellie Lathrop, PO Box190, Castle Rock, WA 98611; cell: 360-430-3006; office: 360-274-3044; [email protected]

    Inland Empire: Steve McConnell, ForestIntegrity, 1514 E 19th Ave, Spokane, WA99203; 509-477-2175 (w); 509-868-8277 (c);[email protected]

    Alaska: Charles Sink, Director, Enterpriseand Trust, Chugachmiut, 1840 Bragaw St.,Suite 110, Anchorage, AK 99508-3463; office:907-562-4155; [email protected]

    Northwest Council Members

    District I: John Walkowiak, 3515 Oakmont St.NE Tacoma, WA 98422; cell: 253-320-5064;[email protected]

    District II: Bob Alverts, 14569 SW 130thAve., Tigard, OR 97224; 503-639-0405;[email protected]

    Please send change of address to:Society of American Foresters

    5400 Grosvenor LaneBethesda, MD 20814


    Anyone is at liberty to make fair use of the material in this publication. To reprint or make multiple reproduc-tions, permission must be obtained from the editor. Proper notice of copyright and credit to the WesternForester must appear on all copies made. Permission is granted to quote from the Western Forester if thecustomary acknowledgement accompanies the quote.

    Other than general editing, the articles appearing in this publication have not been peer reviewed for techni-cal accuracy. The individual authors are primarily responsible for the content and opinions expressed herein.

  • ulation of forests to meet society’sdemand for wood resources whilemaintaining the integrity of the ecosys-tems that provide these resources.Nevertheless, the US Forest Service isincreasingly hiring general biologistsover foresters. The question remains tobe answered as to whether this is dueto a lack of quality forestry graduates ora desire on the part of the organizationto increase its interdisciplinary expert-ise, or both. A survey being conductedby the Pinchot Institute of Conservationseeks to answer the question of whyemployers hire who they hire, but won’tbe available until late 2014.

    As the population grows, so does theneed to be able to manage and manip-ulate forests for both resource protec-tion and use. As the Baby Boomersretire, a vast amount of knowledge andexperience will leave with them. TheBaby Boomers were the efficient worka-holics who brought on such acts as theClean Water Act and the Clean Air Act.Will the inexperienced, yet tenaciousGeneration Y be goal oriented enoughto take the reins and steer the forestindustry into the future? The questionremains to be answered.

    Across the nation, forestry pro-grams are finding it difficult to retaintheir summer camps and field schoolswhile equipment is becoming moresophisticated and technologicallyadvanced. Even when students receivetechnical training, improvements ariseso fast with new technology that newhires have to be trained to use theupdated software. This makes itincreasingly difficult to integrate tech-nical skills into a curriculum. Enterintegrated partnerships between edu-cational institutions and private indus-try (e.g., cooperative education pro-grams) as one possible strategy to fullyeducate and train forestry students tomeet future demands of them in theworkplace. However, there are trendsin higher education that may con-strain the flow of forestry graduates.

    The University of Washington (UW)currently offers a Society of AmericanForesters (SAF) accredited professionalforestry program at the Master’s leveland a non-accredited Bachelor’s levelforestry program in Sustainable ForestManagement. The UW intends to applyfor SAF accreditation of its baccalaure-ate degree options in Sustainable Forest

    Management and Natural ResourceManagement in 2016 when its Masterof Forest Resources degree is scheduledfor re-accreditation. The last under-graduates at Washington State Universi-ty who graduated with a forest manage-ment degree were in 2011, althoughWSU has recently established a ForestryRestoration Task Force to determinewhat is needed to re-establish the degree.

    Oregon State University has devel-oped a Professional School model,effective this fall of 2013, that includesa field school, integrates forest man-agement and forest operations stu-dents, and offers a cooperative educa-tion program. At the UW students maywork as interns at Pack Forest or withan agency or private organization overthe summer or during the school year.

    Technician-level training is offeredat community colleges such as GreenRiver, Spokane, Central Oregon, andMount Hood, all of which provide SAF-accredited forest technology programs.

    In response to trends of educationalinstitutions moving toward broadernatural resource and environmentalscience degrees, the SAF seeks tostrengthen the quality of graduating

    students by accrediting naturalresource programs. Sharik hopes thatby accrediting interdisciplinary naturalresource management programs,accreditation standards for forestry pro-grams will be tightened. Nonetheless,we are facing some interesting times forforestry education and forestry jobmarkets. How schools and businessesrespond is yet to be determined.However, shifts in the demographics ofcurrent forestry professionals in privateand public institutions may offer greatopportunities for future graduates,especially if the Baby Boomer retire-ments create a shortfall in the supply ofqualified forestry professionals. ◆

    Gary Batliner Jr. graduated fromOregon State University with a degreein Forest Management in June andfrom Park University with a degree inCommunication Arts: Journalism in2008. His plans are to get a job manag-ing public lands and use his writingskills to inspire an increasingly urban-ized society to learn about and properlycare for our nation’s forests. He can bereached at 913-484-1782 or [email protected]



    Students observe biomass forwarding by Melcher Logging near CampSherman, Deschutes National Forest.


    Bret Michalski, M.S., Wildlife ScienceRon Boldenow, Ph.D., C.F., Forestry E-mail: [email protected] (541) 383-7756




    “Each generation imagines itself to bemore intelligent than the one that wentbefore it and wiser than the one thatcomes after it.” —George Orwell

    here was a timewhen I would

    have simply laughedand then dismissedthe Orwell quote asnothing more than amildly insightful wit-ticism. However,somewhere near a third of the waythrough my career in forestry, watchingnow as “Boomers” file toward the exitand the “Millennials” find their way inthe door, the quote resonates with mein a way that makes me believe there isprofound instruction within Orwell’smusing that deserves our attention.

    Whether it’s completely material ornot, I have never been crazy about thelabels assigned to the generations. Nodoubt my dislike stems from being amember of “Generation X,” a genera-tion whose name was coined to conveysupposed nihilism and by clever designis the first generation with a name thatdoubles as an insult to its members.

    Nevertheless, we cannot reject eachgeneration’s commonality of experi-

    ence that gives rough-hew to its mem-bers’ identities. Understanding, in agenerational sense, where somebodyhas “come from” can be quite instruc-tive: How many of you have a belovedfamily member who was/is part of the“Greatest Generation” and who openseach and every wrapped present slow-ly in order to preserve the wrappingpaper? Obviously, surviving past hardtimes taught the value in even thesmallest luxuries; pretty insightful.

    Also, if you’re a member of Genera-tion X, I am willing to bet you know themelody to nearly every top 40 songmade between 1957 and 1975 becauseyour Boomer parents only ever lis-tened to “Oldies” in the car. Of courseit beats the grandparents who didn’tlisten to the radio at all! It’s a funexample of the collective experiencesthat serve to bind a generation togeth-er. Does this example illuminate any-thing in particular about Generation X?Possibly. I might argue that it points toGen Xers’ adaptability: I can enjoy

    nearly all genres of music and thatsays something in a rapidly changingpopular culture. Again, think about theolder Greatest Generation; on thewhole they never much cared for thechanges to music after the advent ofRock & Roll. Obviously there are indi-vidual examples to the contrary, butthe overall point is having some basicknowledge of the things that defineand delineate each generation thatleads to understanding its individuals.

    My grandparents were members ofthe Greatest Generation. As kids wespent vacations staying at their home.My grandpa was a logger and grandmahad worked at a cannery but wasretired by the time I remember stayingwith them. They were what I wouldterm working middle class. While onvacation, meals were an experienceenjoyed together. But as quick as themeal could be light and fun it couldtake a 180-degree turn toward one of usbeing on the hot-seat for not finishingwhat was put in front of us. My grand-parents’ identity and guiding principleswere indelibly imprinted upon them aschildren growing up during the GreatDepression and as young adults livingand fighting in a world at war. Theycouldn’t sit there and watch good foodgo to waste as a result of a child’s ficklesense of taste. Life had taught them tobe frugal and pragmatic and it servedthem well.

    How interesting then that a definingcharacteristic of one generation is pur-posely abandoned by the next—whichbrings me back to my generation:Something I often heard growing upwas, “Your father and I decided a longtime ago that we weren’t going tomake you eat peas (for instance) likeour parents made us.” There are threegenerations of definite change encap-sulated within that one sentence: TheGreatest Generation took peas veryseriously and demanded that theirkids sit at the table until those peaswere all eaten. The Baby Boomersnever got over the time that they stoodup to mom and dad and refused to eatthe peas, resulting in a test of wills andcold peas eaten hours later. I and myGeneration X peers could take or leavethe peas, it was completely our choice.Some may see that as permissive, butlooking back I definitely appreciatedthe chance to make up my own mind,

    A Stitch in Time



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    though it may manifest as indecision abit later in life.

    I don’t know much about theMillennials, but after writing this articleI certainly think it incumbent upon meto do some research to enhance myunderstanding. Suffice it to say thatMillennials have arrived on the scenewith the youth and enthusiasm thatone would expect of the average 20-something. Much has been made oftheir technological prowess and maybeover time that will prove well founded.At the very least, from what I’ve seen,they are very technologically comfort-able; a fact that makes perfectly goodsense as I consider my own early expe-riences with computers: The firstmachine I ever saw in person was deliv-ered to my elementary school at an allschool assembly in 1981. I was in thethird grade then and to this day I havesuch a clear mental picture of the littleApple with its floppy disks and crypticDOS commands. It was great entice-ment to get my work done so I couldrun downstairs to play “Oregon Trail.”

    A compelling argument can bemade that I’m a part of the very first“tech” generation. Certainly most folksmy age are quite comfortable withcomputers and the multitude of gadg-ets so prevalent today. That said, theMillennials’ “third grade” experiencewould have occurred around say 2001,post widespread use of the Internet, cellphones, and digital media. Sitting intheir third-grade classroom they wereat the cusp of the advent of the tabletcomputer and the rise of social media.These all have huge implications on theway that they communicate and work.

    So what of that Orwell quote I start-ed with? I’m guessing when you read ityou considered how true it was as itapplied to YOU? And it is that verytruth in human nature that presentsthe real problem with the retirement oftoday’s Boomers or even tomorrow’sMillennials: with each successive mod-ern generation it seems the level ofself-importance and entitlementincreases beyond measure. We allknow a handful of exceptions to thisrule, but how many folks have you runacross that ARE the rule? In any case,the relative ease with which we identi-fy with the Orwell quote, the apparentlimitless bounds of our outsized egos,the loss of respect for quiet humility—

    these all represent impediments to thetransfer of knowledge—a transfer ofknowledge that we wish to execute asthe biggest and fastest wave of retire-ments in modern history takes place.

    Of course companies and organiza-tions have and will lay plans for intern-ships, job shadows, apprenticeships,probationary terms and the like inorder to shorten the learning curvewhile teaching the job as quickly aspossible and necessary. Unfortunately,the pace of turnover could well outstripthe ability to properly transfer impor-tant knowledge accumulated by a com-pany’s most senior employees. For the

    most ambitious and optimistic 20-year-long wave of retirements, the pretenseof ego will need to be checked at thedoor. If teacher and student take a littlebit of time to get past the generationalstereotypes by focusing on learning afew important generational details,then there is hope that we will getthrough this time of change and justmaybe be better for it in the end. ◆

    Mike Tucker is a forester for GiustinaLand and Timber Co. in Eugene, Ore.He can be reached at 541-345-2301 [email protected]



    s children of the Greatest Genera-tion, many baby boomers tuned

    in, turned on, and dropped out as weloved in for peace to each other andMother Earth. Our parents had enduredthe double whammy of frugal timesduring the Great Depression and the

    horrors of a world war. They vowed thattheir offspring would grow up underbetter conditions. In droves, many ofthem migrated to the suburbs to buildnew homes, schools, churches, play-grounds, and shopping malls. Some ofus looked beyond the manicured sub-divisions and saw a wildland that fasci-nated us with its mountains, lakes,

    rivers, forests, and more forests. Webecame foresters. We, and most of uswere boys, wanted our Boy Scout campexperience to continue for the rest ofour lives.

    Due to the circumstances theyfaced growing up many of our parentsdid not have the opportunity to attendcollege. But they admonished us to doso with the familiar lecture, “… get agood education, that’s something thatno one can take away from you.” Andwe did. Forestry schools filled up andpumped out graduates eager to prac-tice the doctrine of Gifford Pinchot.

    Our charge: get out the cut and putout fires. Trained as experts, we eitherhad the answers or would figure themout. But some point early in ourcareers the rules changed and caughtus off guard. An array of federal andstate environmental laws affected howforests would be managed. Even pri-vate forestlands came under a sociallicense to practice forestry. We were nolonger considered the wise meisters ofthe forests as teams of “…ologists”argued on behalf of their specializeddisciplines.

    Figuring that we would spend mostof our time with boots on the ground,we found ourselves defending triedand true forestry practices in con-tentious meeting rooms. We wereforced to adapt to a paradigm shift(now that’s a phrase from the 1990s,isn’t it?) that everyone had a voice inmanaging our forests and we had tolisten to each one of them.

    In response, professors coinedphrases such as “new forestry” and“adaptive management” that our1960s era silviculture textbooks failedto mention. Fire managers reluctantlyallowed some fires to burn.

    I suppose that every generation offoresters can look back and list tech-nological advances that changed theway they did their job. Just think ofhow the internal combustion engineand the airplane, first introduced inthe early 20th century, changed notonly forestry but every other occupa-tion as well. Bulldozers and skiddersinstead of horses, chainsaws instead ofcross-cut saws, harvesters instead ofchain saws, air patrol instead of look-

    The Generation of Baby Boomer Foresters


  • out towers, the list is endless. For our generation, we can look back

    upon two gee-whiz advances—com-puters and GPS (Global PositioningSystem)—that leave us wondering howwe ever did our jobs without them. Ouremployers issued us staff compassesand steel chains to start our careers andat retirement we are turning back elec-tronic data recorders, laser measuringdevices, and GPS units. Maps and aerialphotos that once had to be protectedwith our lives are now reproduced witha click of the mouse.

    Every advance with technologybrings the assumption that the nextgeneration automatically gets it. Eventhough many of us baby boomerforesters struggled learning computersand GPS at mid-career, we expect thenewly hired forester to start their firstday on the job with these skills alreadymastered.

    Moreover, he or she had better knowwhen to use a 10 basal area factorinstead of a 40 for variable cruise plots,how to get a stuck core sample out ofan increment borer, and how to fire upa chain saw to clear downfall from alogging road, as well as the other basicskills. Otherwise they will hear us gray-beards mumbling among ourselves,“These kids don’t know anything. Can’tblame them though. It’s the colleges’fault. They don’t even have summercamp anymore. How are they sup-posed to learn the ropes?”

    But you know what? In the lastdecade of my career, I’ve learned thatif I show the new forester how to throwa chain, use a redi-mapper or someother almost-forgotten skill, they willrespond to my yell and come runningdown the hall to fix the glitch on mycomputer.

    In a profession in which a rotationof trees is generally longer than a

    career, we are continually finishingwhat another forester started andstarting what another forester will fin-ish. And just as we baby boomers werementored by the retiring generationahead of us, it is incumbent that we dothe same for the new foresters, nownamed Josh and Sara instead ofCharley or Fred.

    At last year’s national SAF conven-tion in Spokane, I saw familiar facesthat I had not seen in, some cases, sev-eral decades. While my appearance hasnot changed at all, I hardly recognizedthose old-timers whose career startedthe same time as mine. Typically theconversation began with, “Are youretired yet?”

    I also remember a conversationwith a group of young women that Idubbed the Berkeley Girls as they werestudents at California Berkeley. Theysat next to me during one of the tech-nical sessions. Afterwards, we dis-cussed the presentations. I walkedaway being very impressed with theirenthusiasm and grasp of the subjectmatter. Several decades separated usin age and they will certainly take adifferent career path than me. But dur-ing our brief time together, we were allforesters.

    As baby boomers, we set outtogether to change the world, and forsome of us, that meant the world’sforests as well. Our aching kneesremind us that we left our footprints inthe woods. I’ll leave it to the next cou-ple generations of foresters to reporton how we did. ◆

    Bill Love, CF, recently retired from theIdaho Department of Lands, is current-ly working part-time as a consultingforester with Inland Forest Management,Inc., in Sandpoint, Idaho. He can bereached at 208-597-1710 or [email protected]



    Same cedar stump, same forester, four decades later.



    research silviculturist’s workis firmly grounded in the scientific

    method to acquire knowledge on for-est dynamics. They also integrateinformation from numerous sourcesto produce new knowledge not readilyidentified by single studies. Resultsand interpretation subsequently pro-vide the scientific foundation fordeveloping management decisionsand strategies. The results from scien-tific investigations are documented inmanuscripts, monographs, andreports. The art of silviculture is devel-oped through talent, curiosity, andpersonal experience, and from a cross-generational connection between sci-entists; but it also contains a visionand passion toward understandinghow forests grow and how to managethem to meet human needs. In thenorthern Rocky Mountains, the legacyof many generations guided theadvancement of silviculture research,beginning with John Leiberg in 1899.

    The ability to use experience gainedfrom one generation passed on to thenext drives silvicultural innovation.Similar to the way a doctor practicesmedicine, a silviculturist’s artistic tal-ent comes from years of practice. Butpractice alone does not train the artist.

    Skills honed over time lead to develop-ing a robust philosophy and apprecia-tion of nuances. Skilled silviculturistsmust also foresee future applicationsand develop, create, and evaluatemanagement strategies to addresstoday’s and tomorrow’s managementneeds. To excel, it requires consider-able creativity, leadership, and attimes, a thick skin.

    The skilled research silviculturist ispersistently trying new things; testingstrategies that at first appear out ofcontext and at times seem out of place.The irregular selection system, adapt-ed by me and Russ Graham for moistforests, has been shortsightedly called“touchy and feely” forestry; lackingquantitative underpinnings; being toodifficult to implement; or not fittingwithin the accepted silvicultural terms.The irregular selection system, howev-er, was the result of many attempts topractice regulated unevenaged silvi-culture in moist forests that continual-ly failed to meet management objec-tives. Although I did not have theexperience of implementing regulated

    unevenaged systems, it was throughDr. Graham’s experience (i.e., practice)combined with my research on west-ern white pine growth across variousopenings that led to the innovativeirregular selection system. This inno-vation would have been impossiblewithout a generational connectionbetween past and present.

    In silviculture, the place whereartistic knowledge is passed from gen-eration to generation is in the forest.Russ Graham has often told the storyof getting up at 4 a.m. on a rainy day tospend the morning with ChuckWellner (research silviculturist, 1933-2001). As Chuck always said, “It’s timeto go out and watch the white pinegrow.” It was during these times thatthe experienced taught the novice.Chuck provided a vision and passionpassed from John Leiberg, JuliusLarson, Irvine Haig, Ken Davis, andRobert Weidman of silviculture thataided in Russ’ own development andgrowth as a silviculturist. Russ learnedto appreciate the complexity and thenuances of forest dynamics. Thesemoments with Chuck gave Russ aunique connection that otherwisewould have been missed or taken sev-eral more decades to attain.

    My favorite and most valuablelearning experiences were also in theforest. Many times Russ and I wouldsit and try to describe the circum-stances that created the place wherewe sat; these discussions would last forhours. From these sessions, I learnedthe most critical time in forests is theregeneration and establishment phase(he who gets there first captures thesite). I learned about the role of distur-bance and how a series of small eventsat particular points in time influencesa forest’s ability to become establishedand develop. Through cross genera-tional learning, I discovered the keyforest attributes a silviculturist canmanipulate to alter the trajectory ofvegetation composition and growth.What Chuck passed on to Russ, Russgave to me—the appreciation of whata forest is and all the complexity andincidental nuances it has to offer. The

    Silviculture Research: The Intersection ofScience and Art Across Generations


  • transfer of skills and practice from onegeneration to the next comes throughdirect interaction among the experi-enced and the novice in a forest set-ting. It cannot come from books, man-uscripts, or symposia alone.

    Currently, I am the last in the series

    of Forest Service Research silvicultur-ists in the northern Rocky Mountains,but I contain the knowledge of severalgenerations carried from scientist toscientist. So often, research resultsfocus on one dimension, but whatmakes research silviculture unique is

    thinking multi-dimensional to inferbeyond just from numbers alone,adding management relevance to theresearch (i.e., the “so what?”). The artof silviculture adds this multi-dimen-sional holistic view that enables me tolearn so much more from a singlestudy. My ability to integrate knowl-edge from the past—from Irvine Haig,Chuck Wellner, Russ Graham, and oth-ers—gives me the ability to build uponfoundational knowledge so that I cancontribute to the science and expandthe relevance of silviculture. I wouldnot have been able to advance my ownresearch so significantly if it were notfor these cross-generational interac-tions so important to the forestry pro-fession. I only hope that I will have theopportunity to pass the art of this sci-ence to the next generation. ◆

    Theresa B. Jain is a research foresterwith the Rocky Mountain ResearchStation in Moscow, Idaho. She can bereached at 208-883-2331 or [email protected]



    A moment of mentoring Russ Graham at Deception Creek ExperimentalForest by fellow scientists and leadership from the Intermountain ResearchStation. Left to right: Russ Graham, Thad Harington (assistant director),Marv Foiles (research silviculturist), Carter Gibbs (deputy director), andRoger Bay (director).


    he room was fullof associates

    with whom I spent acareer, there to say“Goodbye” as I transi-tioned to “retired”status. Maybe a fewwere there to makesure I really was going away. How could36 years go so fast? Now I’m tasked withpassing along some lessons to thosewho follow in my footsteps. Fairenough; I learned from some greatleaders. Maybe I have something wor-thy for a younger generation.

    Wisdom does not arrive pain-free.One of the first big decisions I madewas really bad. I was charged early inmy career to commercially thin a largetract of Douglas-fir previously managedby a forester who harvested for valueand little else. The results showed.

    I did a masterful job of thinning thestand and wrote a memo documentinghow I brought the stand from the edgeof disaster to a showplace. Which I did.I completely forgot, however, thehuman aspect. My zealous approachmade the previous manager’s work lookbad. He was a decent man, a good pro-

    fessional, and someone I’ve come toadmire. I’ve never forgotten how I hurtthis man. And he knew something Ididn’t. Not long after I went on to otherchallenges, the property was sold todevelopers.

    Most things happen for a reason,whether we know it or not.

    Sometimes you learn from others’mistakes. I had an acquaintance whobuilt an excellent forestry program forhis bosses. Along the way he got intolog buying, which included the usualamount of horse-trading and walkingtoward that line you do not want tocross. He was a blunt, outspoken guy,with a big stogie shoved in his mouth.In spite of the bravado, he was a goodman with a big heart.

    Unfortunately, he crossed the lineand did some things for which the Fedstook a dim view. He went to prison, andlost his family and career. He wasn’t theonly one punished; others suddenlyretired or were shipped to god-forsakencorners of the US. This man, however,paid the ultimate price. I saw him sev-eral years later, a broken, lonely alco-holic who died far too young.

    Your reputation is worth more thanany deal. Integrity is more than a word.It is everything.

    Sometimes the price paid to accom-plish a goal includes more than youmight expect. In an incident that seemsquaint today, our office had a heavy,cumbersome easel disliked by all whoused it. Unfortunately, the office comp-troller didn’t have to use it, but she con-trolled the money hose with an iron fist.I finally purchased—on the companyaccount—a new, light, easy-to-useeasel. I was a hero to the office staff butthe comptroller was not amused.

    The big boss called me into hisoffice for what I suspected would be aroyal fanny chewing. He shut the door,looked at me with something betweena stern look and silly grin and gave mea short speech about my transgression.His heart wasn’t really in it, I could tell,and he ended the sermon by saying,“I’m glad someone finally had thenerve to get rid of that piece of junk…”

    Sometimes you price in a butt-chew-ing to reach a greater goal.Where do youdraw the line? That’s called judgment.And sometimes the real power is held bysomeone other than the person in charge.

    The computer is indispensable intoday’s world. So is the technology thatgoes with it: LiDAR, modeling, maps,mountains of data, spread-sheets, andthe like. There are, however, two lessonswe’ve largely forgotten: (1) people makethe world go round, not computers;and (2) there is absolutely no substitutefor seeing it yourself.

    My fire manager was the best in thebusiness. He thought like a fire. Hecould pre-position fire toys by lookingat topography and weather maps, thensay the fire would do “X.” And it did X.He was amazing. Unfortunately, hespent his life running fires and firestaff from behind the computer. Ifinally dynamited him away from thescreen and we took a tour of interior(actually a small part of) Alaska. Wetalked and listened to his people; wewent to the field and looked at whatthey faced. He knew what they weregoing to say before they said it, butthat missed the point. They neededhim to validate what they faced andthey needed him to do it in person.Not by email and not over the phone.

    People should run the world, notcomputers.

    The computer is only as good aswhat we put in it. Too often what we


    A Lifetime of Learning


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    s I sit herethinking of what

    to write about thelooming retirementsof many people inour business, includ-ing my own, I thinkback many yearswhen I began the first grade andentered a classroom that didn’t haveenough desks for all of the studentsthat arrived eager to start school.Today the opposite is true across ourprofession, lots of empty or soon-to-be-empty desks, but are there enoughfolks to fill them?

    It has been apparent to many man-agers across most segments of forestrythat this day was coming. In my compa-ny we have been discussing successionplanning for a number of years. How-ever, the reality is that the recent eco-nomic downturn slowed the process ofboth retirements and replacement, buttoday that has changed 180 degrees.

    Those foresters in mid-career are avery sought after and valuable com-modity, and those just starting out arehaving the easiest time in years findingtheir first job.

    I am happy to report that, althoughthe pool seems shallow on recruits, itis definitely not shallow on talent; andalthough the pool may appear shallowon experience, it is not. It is just a dif-ferent type of experience.

    Those of us on the way out havelearned to use computers and all theassociated devices and technologies asadults. Our replacements are lightyears ahead of us in that regard andcan adapt to change much quicker.

    The people we are attracting to theindustry reflect the changes in our

    society; there are more diverse back-grounds and experiences than we’veseen in the past. This is a good change,because forestry needs to reflect socie-ty and attract high-quality individuals.

    Because of the poor economy, thenumber of people entering our busi-ness is down, but those that do enterare enthusiastic, they want to be here.That enthusiasm, coupled with goodtechnology skills and different lifeexperiences, is a powerful combina-tion and bodes well for forestry.

    But what about job experience?Well, experience is something youdon’t get without living through it. Notmany 20 or even 30 somethings have20 years of experience. Although wedidn’t hire replacements for all ourpotential retirees during the recession,we did continue to hire and we devel-oped a good pattern of mentoring andcoaching. We fast track our new peo-ple as much as possible. We take themalong, show them what we want done,let them go do it, get back together,and discuss what went right andwhere to improve. Do they make mis-takes? Sure they do, but they learnfrom them, move on, and gain…whatdo you know…experience.

    So, what do I see from here forforestry and all the associated busi-nesses and agencies? I see all thoseempty desks being filled with peoplethat are enthusiastic, talented, andgaining experience every day. It takes alot more work today to find those peo-ple, but they are available. ◆

    Robin Tucker is an area manager forWood and Fiber Supply, Georgia-Pacific West, LLC in Philomath, Ore. Hecan be reached at 541-968-3291 [email protected]


    Time to Fill the Empty Desks


    receive back is a guess based on others’best guesses. That’s called modeling. Itis considered old-fashioned today, but Itrust the Mark I eyeball more than I doa computer screen or printout whenmy reputation is on the line. I want toknow what is there; I want to see,touch, and feel what is there. That per-sonal knowledge never has failed me.

    There is no substitute for firsthandknowledge or actual data.

    The last, most important lesson issimple: shut up and listen. Nearly everyjam I created for myself was caused bynot listening—not listening to whatothers were saying; not listening to theinner voice warning me to listen. Ilearned over time but I caused myselfunnecessary grief by talking when Ishould’ve been listening.

    To close on a philosophical note,Native Americans revere their elders,those people who have done it all andwatched others do the same. Our cul-ture, conversely, is youth and technol-ogy based. We’ve forgotten the lessonsof the people who were here first, peo-ple who survived by being really smartabout life. There are many benefits tobeing young, but being wise is not oneof them. If I had had the wisdom atage 30 that I have today, the next 38years would have been a lot easier!Maybe those old-timers really havesomething to say… ◆

    Bob Dick is a 38-year SAF member,elected Fellow in 2001. He wasemployed at retirement by AmericanForest Resource Council, served asAlaska State Forester, and held severalindustry association and forest indus-try positions throughout his career. Hecan be reached at 360-427-5084 [email protected]


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    orestry seems tohave become

    more of a young per-son’s game as timegoes on. This from amember of the babyboomer generationthat has watched theprofession evolve from old-growthtimber harvesting to third-growthmanagement. The profession has andwill continue to change—buzzwordslike “rebranding,” “acceptance,” and“accountability” are at the forefront.Foresters are less “Jacks of all trades”and more Jacks and Jills with special-ties linked to the grand world of forestresource management. The followingstory reflects my experience with thisevolution.

    All I ever wanted to be was aforester. I came from way up the northfork of the Nooksack, got my studies inat the UW College of Forest Resources,and hit the woods running withInternational Forestry Consultants,Inc. Over the course of a 42-year (sofar) career I found the term “forester”to be defined in many different ways.Or maybe the term today simply does-n’t fit the spectrum of knowledgeneeded to manage and produce the

    products and services provided by thewoods any more. Either way, some-body has to wear all the hats requiredto do those jobs in our ever changingand complex natural resources world;today, there are more hat wearers thanin the 1970s.

    Over the course of my career I did afew things right. I listened to the oldguys, I diversified my experiences, Icontinued my education in the woodsand classrooms, and most importantly,I hired the right people. In the consult-ing business one has to stay nimble—adaptable to client’s needs, attuned tonew technologies, and aware of rulesand regulations. In a diversified pro-fession, this is a tough thing to do.

    My consulting business stayedsmall for the first 30 years—a “bou-tique” company specializing in forestmanagement of non-resident ownedproperty, appraising unique proper-ties, and serving urban tree owners aswell. A turning point came in the mid-1990s when I realized that I was havingway too much fun, but couldn’t keepup. My varied interest in all thingstrees meant that I was spread too thin,thus the decision to expand and hireothers with a mix of interests as well.The hiring began and we ended upone of the larger forest consultingcompanies in the northwest. This ishow I prepared for the present and

    future. The diverse nature of the busi-ness, its mix of expertise, and the fullspectrum of the ages of the people Ihired caught the attention of AmericanForest Management, Inc. (AFM), whichled to a merger—we are now part of anational company, one of the largestforest managers in America.

    The AFM northwest office is unique-ly positioned to continue in the ever-changing world of forestry as this pro-fession has become and will continueto evolve. My retirement (don’t get yourhopes up) and of those that followwon’t materially affect the flow of busi-ness because not only do we older folksin the company mentor, we listen to theyounger people and guide and encour-age their success. The trick is to enjoythe process and understand the spe-cialized expertise needed in today’sforestry world. As for other consultants,I don’t know—we’re a reticent bunchand I don’t know if my path is similar ormuch different from others. I do knowthat my company’s diversification andopen-minded attitude got us throughthe past years in good shape.

    For the future, forestry consulting isbright. The increasingly diverse natureof ownership, fragmentation if youwill, and different goals of new forestowners will require a nimble can-doattitude that will call on the morediverse consultants to manage withspecialized personnel.

    Do I think that the retirement of thebaby boomers will lead to a vacuum ofknowledge? I think not. It’s just that theyounger generations will find knowledgepackaged differently. Yes, it is sad thatthe new forester can’t throw a chain. I’mnot sad that I can’t run an electronic fielddata recorder either! I would be sad if thegenerations don’t appreciate thechanges that have come or will comeand respect the challenges of each.

    So for me, being a forester was andcontinues to be an evolution. Beingopen to the changing times, whilestaying grounded in the woods, got methrough a terrific career. ◆

    Tom Hanson, CF, is director of ClientServices and vice president of AFMLand Sales for American ForestManagement in Kirkland, Wash. Hecan be reached at 425-820-3420 [email protected]



    Reflections of a Forester


    hat advice can we give to agroup of young foresters that

    they do not already know? The issuesthat we Baby Boomers faced rangedfrom diversity that included genderequality and racial acceptance that hasoccurred to the level that most youngpeople now think diversity is normal.Young people are fully integrated withtechnology. Young people know how towork in collaborative groups even if itis through constant texting or Twitteras they hold virtual conversations.Information access is constantly attheir fingertips and their ability toabsorb short bits of information fromdiverse sources makes us old timersdizzy. Our lifelong endeavors will notbe their endeavors, they will have theirown. What can an old Baby Boomerforester give advice about?

    If we are talking about BabyBoomers, let us examine some of thepromises we swore to uphold to changethe world for the better. We did dealwith civil rights, gender issues, and theenvironment, helped influence the endof a conflict and tried to embrace theinclusion of the people of the world. Itwas our sense of fairness that drove theway we were to change the world. Wechallenged what we called the estab-lishment, the world order of power andeconomic balances seeking to find abetter way for man to live around theworld and not just our backyard. Nowwe are the establishment and what wedid change is subject for much debate.Like earlier generations before us, weunderstand the coming generationswith about as much insight as the oldergenerations had about us. Whatinsights we have come from our per-sonal backgrounds and our genera-tional development. Therefore, I willprovide some advice based from myworld view from my backyard.

    Although I am the current chair ofthe Alaska Society of AmericanForesters, I work for an Alaska NativeTribal consortium. Working for AlaskaNatives we have found that racialacceptance is still not complete. Westill need to work on our national atti-

    tudes, state-level attitudes, and per-sonal-level attitudes to let people bepeople without their racial or genderorientation influence how we thinkabout each person or group. We arealso observing Alaska Native people intransition from a subsistence economyto a westernized economy where anexisting generation of elders who grewup in fish camps learning the ways ofhunting, fishing, and gathering arewatching their great grandchildrenstay indoors mastering video games.

    Alaska, because of the Alaska NativeClaims Settlement Act of 1971 (ANCSA),is predominately owned by the federal(approximately 63%) and state govern-ments (about 25%). Alaska Nativelandowners aggregate approximately12% landownership, while the remain-ing private landowners retain approxi-mately 1% of Alaska’s land base. Thisdichotomy of ownership in Alaskabrings in a diversity of viewpoints. Thenational agencies try to implementtheir land management view from anational level, as many states areaware. The State of Alaska has theirviewpoint and sometimes are at oddswith ANCSA and the Alaska NationalInterest Lands Conservation Actpassed in 1980 (ANILCA). Both of

    these acts provide for subsistenceresource use by the Alaska Native peo-ple and other uses that sometimesconflict with the general public’s useand desired use of federal lands. Thepublic has issues with Alaska Nativelands being private lands and areunaware that the Alaska Natives quit-claimed their rights to land ownershipof most of Alaska to the federal gov-ernment in 1971 under ANCSA andnot by the acquisition of Alaska fromRussia to the United States in 1867.

    Land management conflicts willcontinue to be an issue in Alaska andthroughout the world. Land and forestmanagement down to the local levelwill face the new issues of water rights,among many other resource limitationissues, that in the United States havebecome critical in the southwest andare proliferating across the country.Resource utilization groups as well asconservation groups are grabbingwater rights as if it were a newOklahoma Land Rush with very seri-ous consequences for everyoneinvolved. Unaware indigenous andother groups will be left out of theseresource control requisition frenziesthat are occurring. As population and



    Baby Boomers—A Forester’s Advice

    Your Vote CountsThe SAF National Office will be sending electronic election ballots to all mem-

    bers on October 1, so watch your inbox. Every vote counts, so please take thetime to review the material provided and cast your vote. Members who do nothave an email on file with SAF will receive a paper ballot.

    At the national level, we will all be voting for candidates for vice president in2014, leading to president in 2015. The excellent slate of candidates includesBob Alverts from the Oregon SAF and Sharon Friedman from Colorado-WyomingSAF. Statements of candidacy and biographical information on both candidateswill be provided in the ballot package and also in The Forestry Source. In 2014,Dave Walters will take the reins from Joanne Cox as president.

    Oregon members will also be voting on a new council representative toreplace Bob Alverts for the term of 2014-2016. Information on candidates EdShepard and Ron Boldenow can be found in the August issue of The ForestrySource and will also appear in your ballot package.

    Also included in the ballot for Oregon, Washington State, and Inland Empiremembers will be state elections. In Oregon, a delegate-at-large position will alsobe voted on. Both Oregon and Washington State will be voting on several posi-tion statements.

    Read the material, give the candidates a call if you need additional informa-tion, and make your informed vote. Ballots, both electronic and paper, are dueback to national no later than November 1.




    Editor’s note: This article is reprintedwith permission from the Fall 2010issue of Northwest Woodlands, a pub-lication for family forest owners in theNorthwest. Freelance writer and con-sulting forester Mickey Bellman inter-viewed six “Next Generation” land-owners (the kids and grandkids, notthe parents) ranging from involved tonot involved in the family forest to geta sense of their views of the familyproperty and legacy. What follows isMickey’s impressions based on what heheard the next generation telling him.

    as it just 40years ago

    when men firstwalked on themoon? Was it just 50years ago whenNorman Rockwellcelebrated smalltowns and rural America in his paint-ings? Was it just today when I canteleconference with someone in theoutback of China?

    Welcome to the 21st century. In thepast 100 years rural America and itsagrarian way of life has been comput-erized. Where homesteads and familyfarms once flourished, the “NextGeneration” has been inundated withthe world and all its offerings. Somuch to see, so much to do, so fewties to the family tree farm.

    Change is in the wind as socialbreezes nudge the management offamily tree farms. The Next Generationof managers has things on their mindsbesides board feet and dollars.

    Via the internet the entire worldhas arrived to lure future managersaway from the family tree farm. Manyheirs are being seduced by the call ofthe urban lifestyle and the computersthat open the world to them. All of myinterviews with the Next Generationhave a common undertone: They areloyal to the “home place” and wish topreserve it, but producing logs andgenerating revenue is secondary. “I’ll

    sell the other pieces ofproperty when the priceis right, but not where Igrew up. I am not willingto spend weeks of effortand sweat to grow moretrees. I want a refugewhere I picnicked,caught my first trout,helped Dad plant trees.Income is secondary.”

    The siblings of thenext generation want iteasy and simple. Two sis-ters simply want to becashed out while brotherwants to manage the treefarm. Or the sisters wantan annual check to bemagically generated bythe tree farm withoutinvesting time and effort.Or all the siblings simplywant the estate to bedivided evenly. Or…

    The scenarios areunique to each family.Previous generationshave invested hugeamounts of time, sweatand money to create afamily dynasty of timber. From 70acres to 700 acres these tree farmshave been planted, pruned, sprayed,thinned and cultured to improve vol-ume and value. Always, Mom andDad planned to pass their legacy tothe children, but reality has reared itsugly head. The government wantsinheritance taxes that often forcessale of timber and land. Childrenhave moved away to the city to lucra-tive jobs and to raise a family. Despitethe best advice of lawyers andaccountants, despite all the seminarsand books about estate planning,there is an innate fear that familyconfrontations and divisions will arisewhen future management is addressed.There is no “one-size-fits-all” plan tosmooth the transition, and everyonewants to delay the inevitable as longas possible.

    In part the inheritance tax laws areto blame. As Mom and Dad pass on,

    the government presents a huge taxbill that many heirs cannot pay with-out dividing the property and sellingoff pieces of land and timber. Decadesof intensive management are lost. Alegacy of sweat equity is suddenlyreduced to stumps. There is littleincentive to continue the familydynasty.

    Tree farm management has alwaysbeen about multiple uses. While treesgrow to harvest size, there is wildlife towatch, hunt and catch. There is cleanwater in the streams and quiet picnics.Long walks in the forest produce tran-quility and peace. And so on. It seemsthe Next Generation prioritizes theseintangible uses more than the dollarsand cents. A recreational refuge andconservation easement may be thefuture goal for some tree farms.

    There is a glimmer of hope thatmay someday soften the reality ofdollars and board feet. Global warm-


    The “Next Generation” Views ForestManagement Through Different Eyes


    Whether looking for wildlife or identifying plantspecies, taking the entire family for a walk in theforest can build interest in the family propertyand be a fun time for all.


    ing and the rush to embrace carboncredits is in its infancy. A slowly evolv-ing market allows businesses to pur-chase the right to watch the treesgrow and capture carbon dioxidefrom the air. The Next Generationmay someday have their home placerefuge and be paid to simply growtrees without harvesting.

    This social shift is not a “bad”thing, but it is a monumental changein direction. Where five generationsonce struggled to own their first radioor John Deere tractor, the NextGeneration internets with people halfa world away. Where Dad’s once-planted trees to harvest in retirement,the Next Generation is content simplyto look at and enjoy the trees. Ouragrarian-based society has shiftedtoward urban-based where servicesare more important than commodi-ties. No longer are families limited toa 25-mile radius around the homeplace; computers and high-speedtravel offer instant access to an entireworld of possibilities.

    Certainly, there are many familieswhere the Next Generation eagerlyawaits the opportunity to manage theland. Many sons and daughters arearming themselves with seminars andclasses as they prepare themselves tobe good tree farm stewards. Besidesthe forestry courses such as silvicul-ture, soils and dendrology, there arebusiness and accounting courses tosharpen their skills.

    With the division of the tree farmcomes another unfortunate reality. Alarge tree farm might support a singlefamily unit, just as it did when Momand Dad worked the place. That treefarm was an independent, sustainableunit. One young heir with whom Ispoke is wildly enthusiastic aboutreturning to school and earn hisforestry degree for future manage-ment. In fact, he also recognizes asmaller tree farm would never com-pletely support him and his futurefamily. He would still need outsideemployment to supplement hisincome. With plenty of sweat andhard work, he may some day create alarge, independent tree farm that willface the same dilemma: how to pass iton intact to his own descendants.

    The world has changed and con-tinues to change. It’s not a lot differ-

    ent when an old song once lamented,“How you gonna keep them down onthe farm…” The Next Generationembraces a more passive role infuture tree farm management. Notbad. Not good. Just different. ◆

    Mickey Bellman is a private forestryconsultant and timber cruiser workingthroughout Oregon and Washington.He lives in Salem with his wife, twogolden retrievers and 3,500 Christmastrees. He can be reached at 503-362-0842 or [email protected]

    resource needs increase, this trendof being left out will continue tooccur. Let us be aware of policydevelopment trends at the national,state, and local levels. Let us beaware of what implications arebrought by such changes by askingwho would be served by such policychanges in the future.

    Alaska Native culture is aboutinclusion. To be excluded in historictimes was akin to a death sentence.These cultures would allow one tointegrate into their society if onechose to do so by finding a mentor toteach them and whose teacherswould usually be an uncle or anaunt. It was their succession planand a lesson for the rest of us. One ofthe problems with the Baby Boomersbeing a larger cohort group than theones who have come before or afterus is that we occupy many of theoverhead positions. We have not pre-pared well for succession. In myexperience working with the AlaskaGeographic Coordinating Groupwho deals with fire policy develop-ment among agencies and landown-ers in Alaska, we can see the gapbetween those highly trained in keyoverhead positions and those whohave experience but not to the levelthat is desired or required that are tosucceed them. The agencies areworking nationwide to close theexperience and knowledge gap. It isthe same with foresters, except thedemographics are not only changing,the way the forests will be used inthe future is changing.

    We have seen foresters taking aturn from being the lead land man-agement occupation group to anancillary one. We were unaware andperhaps even somewhat arrogantabout the changing demographics or

    where the complexity of land and for-est management was going. We wentfrom what could be characterized asa forest management generalist to aforest specialist to a natural resourcegeneralist. The change almost lookslike an exercise in semantics yet theuse and needs of forests and landchanged. Are we going to maintainthe forests for carbon dioxide sinks oruse them for energy, or can bothuses be compatible? How hard arewe going to hang on to preserveuntouched landscapes in the face ofpopulation growth and the now asso-ciated increase in worldwide pros-perity? Regardless of man’s use ofenergy and carbon dioxide releaseinto the atmosphere, the world iswarming. The generations that suc-ceed us will have their struggles deal-ing with what forest and land man-agement issues will arise from awarming planet and the continuedstress of the needs of man.

    Nobody is future proof as the“bow and the wave don’t wait foreach other.” Companies will comeand go and like many an entrepre-neur has experienced, so will for-tune. Forestry will continue to be aneeded profession as will the diver-sity of other bio-based professions.These professions will become morecritical to man as we seek to pre-serve humanity. We do need theyounger generations to step up andshow interest though. For us BabyBoomers, in our remaining years, weneed to go out of way to pass onwhat knowledge we have even if wehave a communication problemwith these younger generations. ◆

    Charlie Sink is chair of the Alaska SAFand Enterprise and Trust Divisiondirector, Chugachmiut, in Anchorage,Alaska. He can be reached at 907-562-4155 or [email protected]

    Forester’s Advice(CONTINUED FROM PAGE 13)


    ith Michael Goergen’s announce-ment to leave SAF in mid-

    September and take a new job with theUS Endowment for Forestry andCommunities, President Joann Coxand the SAF Council have initiated theprocess of finding a new SAF executivevice-president (EVP). The CouncilExecutive Committee has approvedSAF Director of Field Services LouiseMurgia to serve as interim EVP, effec-tive Sept. 16. After discussion withPresident Cox, Louise has agreed toserve in that role until a new EVP ishired. We are pleased to have someonewith Louise’s skills and experience tofill the interim position. In addition,SAF Assistant Director of Forest PolicyJohn Barnwell will take on additionalexternal contact responsibilities withmajor organizations such as NAUFRPand AF&PA to support Louise. Collec-tively Louise and John are workingwith Michael on a transition plan.

    In addition, the Council hasapproved formation of a search com-mittee, to be chaired by Past-PresidentRoger Dziengeleski, which has beenformed to seek out quality candidatesand manage the process. Other SearchCommittee members include: AnnForest Burns from American ForestResource Council in Portland, Ore.;Dave Lewis, current Council memberand forestry consultant from the south-east; Bill Sweeney, early career/studentrepresentative from the University ofIdaho; Steve Koehn, Maryland stateforester; and Carlin Starrs, SAF staffer.The Search Committee is charged tohave names of the top three candidatessent to the SAF Council prior toDecember 31, 2013. A final decision bythe SAF Council and president isexpected in early 2014.

    The Council is also discussing withMichael some key tasks where he maycontinue helping SAF under a con-tractual arrangement after his depar-ture as EVP. This work might include

    such actions as coordinating theremaining work regarding the SAFheadquarters property sale.

    All SAF members appreciate thequality leadership and work thatMichael helped SAF accomplish overthe past decade, and we all wish himwell as he enters the next phase of hiscareer. Michael has indicated heintends to remain an active SAF mem-ber and participate in SAF activities.

    SAF and the Council will keepmembers informed of progress in thesearch for a new EVP, including TheForestry Source, and we all need tosupport Louise in her new role asinterim SAF executive vice-president.If you know of quality candidates forthe EVP position, please forward theirnames to President Cox or yourCouncil representative.

    The second payment of $1.5 millionfrom the sale of the headquartersproperty was received in May. TheFinance Committee is currentlyreviewing investment options for SAF’sfuture. But Council also realizes thatSAF has to invest in member servicessuch as responding to numerous con-cerns on the complexities and difficul-ties of using the SAF website. Councilagreed to a $250,000 capital invest-ment from the second property salepayment for technological updates toimprove and streamline our businesspractices. This endeavor was carefullyevaluated by staff and the FinanceCommittee over the past severalmonths and will fix back-end integra-tion technology to improve memberservices such as online membershiprenewals and convention registration,provide for a redesign of the website tomake it a more functional and usefultool, and improve database function.This work is being done in three phas-es with the website redesign expectedto be completed by December 31.

    SAF staff does a wonderful job forus, often behind the scenes in thecomplex and stressful world ofWashington, DC. Staff pay has beenrestricted and no salary increaseswere received in 2013. Council wantsto retain quality staff and voted to

    appropriate $15,000 for one-time staffbonuses based on performance.

    The Founders Circle, establishedlast year, strives to increase memberinvestment in SAF by asking membersto donate $1,900 over a four-yearperiod. To date, over $72,000 has beenraised mainly by word of mouth, andnow an active outreach effort to iden-tify and invite additional donors hasbeen kicked off.

    Remember to register for theNational Convention slated forOctober 23-27 in North Charleston,SC. This year’s theme is “SilvicultureMatters” and will address how we willmanage our forests with today’s ever-increasing public scrutiny. To registergo to

    Finally, please remember to reviewcandidate information for SAF vice-president, Council member in District 2,and many other important positionsoutlined in the September Source. Ifyou wish to get more involved inhelping SAF charter its future, thereare numerous national committeepositions available, check the Augustedition of The Forestry Source or con-tact your District Council representa-tive for more information. ◆

    This Council report is a joint effortbetween SAF District 1 CouncilRepresentative John Walkowiak(253-320-5064; [email protected]); District 2 SAF CouncilRepresentative Bob Alverts (503-639-0405; [email protected]); andDistrict 4 Council RepresentativeJohnny Hodges (970-218-3394; [email protected]).


    SAF Council Update: ChangesUnderway at National Office

    Left to right: Council representativesJohn Walkowiak, Johnny Hodges,and Bob Alverts.


  • Portland Chapter member JimRombach received his 50-year Goldenmember certificate at a recent PortlandChapter meeting.

    Jim, an involved chapter member,spent his career at WeyerhaeuserCompany, retiring as director ofForestry for Western Timberlands in1998. Of particular note was his lead-ership and involvement in all aspectsof the Mount St. Helens’ volcanic dis-aster and Weyerhaeuser’s successfulrecovery and reforestation of the area.


    he trustees of theOregon SAF

    Foundation arepleased to announcethe selection of ErikJames Neilson as therecipient of the 2013-14 foundation schol-arship. The $7,500 scholarship is theonly scholarship being awarded by thefoundation for the 2013-14 school years.

    Neilson, 27, will be a senior major-ing in forest engineering at OregonState University. He is a 2004 graduateof Astoria High School. After highschool he attended college for severalyears before entering the workforce inthe field of civil construction. Thisincluded working on post-HurricaneKatrina reconstruction projects inLouisiana, and later in northwestOregon working highway, bridge, forestroads, and wildlife restoration projects.

    In 2011 he enrolled at OSU in theforest engineering program because itwas a good match for his civil con-struction background and love of theoutdoors. Erik has also added a minorin business and entrepreneurship. Heis currently a member of the ForestryClub, National Forestry Honor Society,and OSU SAF Student Chapter. He isinterested in a career that allows himto do design and engineering workpossibly in the emerging areas of bio-mass energy and small wood harvest-ing systems.

    The OSAF Foundation was estab-lished in 1985. The major goal of thefoundation is to fund scholarship(s) foroutstanding students in SAF-accreditedprograms at Oregon universities. Formore information about the Foundationand how you can contribute, or contact theNorthwest Office at 503-224-8046. ◆

    Nielson Named FoundationScholarship Winner

    Tristina Hossley and Chet Miller,two Oregon State University stu-

    dents from Coos and Douglas coun-ties, were awarded C. Wylie Smith IIIMemorial scholarships. KristinaHossley is a graduate from NorthBend High School and Chet Millergraduated from Sutherlin HighSchool.

    The C. Wylie Smith III MemorialScholarship was established in 1973in memory of C. Wylie Smith III, wholost his life in an industrial accidentat the age of 29. He was the son of C.Wylie Smith II, one of the founders ofCoos Head Lumber Company, whichhad milling operations in Coos Bay,Ore. He was a 1966 Oregon StateUniversity graduate from the Collegeof Forestry in forest engineering.

    The scholarship fund is adminis-tered by the Oregon State UniversityFoundation and recipients are cho-sen by the SAF Coos Chapter.Recipients must be full-time under-graduate students enrolled in theCollege of Forestry with majors in for-est engineering, forest management,or wood science and engineering.First preference is given to studentsfrom Coos, Curry, or Douglas coun-ties. Selection is based on provenscholarship performance, potentialfor success in the profession, andfinancial need.

    For more information, contactShaun Harkins at 541-267-1855 [email protected]

    Coos ChapterAwards TwoScholarships


    Jim Rombach


    Guy Francy was recently presentedwith his 50-year golden membershipcertificate. Presenting the certificate atGuy’s home in La Grande were BlueMountain Chapter Co-chairs JohnHerbst and Edwin Baird.

    Guy retired from Boise Cascadeafter working in the forestry profes-sion for many years. He occasionallyattends chapter functions, much tothe delight of his fellow members.

    Guy Francy

    CafferataConsulting, LLCPractical Environmental Solutions

    - Tree Farm Certification help- Oregon Forest Practices Rules help- Habitat Assessments/Species Surveys

    (northern spotted owl/goshawk/eagles/songbirds and more)

    - Botanical Surveys and Planning/ Wetlands503.680.7939

    [email protected]


    Blue Mountain Chapter Co-chair EdwinBaird (left) presents Guy Francy withhis Golden Membership certificate.

    N E W G O L D E N M E M B E R S


    he South Puget Sound Chapter ofthe WSSAF has started an out-

    reach project explaining forest man-agement at the Murray Museum, thenew destination stop of the Mt. RainierScenic Railroad in Mineral, Wash.

    The interpretive demonstration ishoused in the original Bunkhouse 17of Camp 6 of the old St. Paul andTacoma Lumber Company. WhenCamp 6 closed, the equipment andbunk houses went to Point DefiancePark in Tacoma. When this exhibitclosed, Tom Murray Jr. moved thebunk houses to his train yard inMineral at the Mt. Rainier ScenicRailroad shops.

    Upon entering Bunkhouse 17, tothe right are two bunks and a typical“bedroom” of the loggers. The centerof the bunkhouse has theold wood stove and a man-nequin dressed in authenticforestry clothes of TomMurray Jr.

    To the left is a small-scalemodel showing modernforestry with explanations ofhow harvesting and manage-ment occurs today using a1/50th scale of trees beingthinned in a skyline settingwith 1/50th size equipmentand a few animals along thebuffered stream. Dependingon exhibit scheduling, oppo-site this model is either theWSSAF “Working Forests,Working Families” display orthe WSSAF “Biomass inWashington” display, whichdepicts modern forest man-agement and the beneficial uses ofwood.

    Members of the Green RiverCommunity College Student Chapterassisted South Puget Sound Chapter

    members Paula and Dick Hopkins inthe construction of the model. How doyou make 1/50th scale trees? Cut theroot plug from 15 cc cedar plugs andthen apply “MogPog” crafting preser-

    vative to the cedar stems. Drill holes inthe foam board display base, insert thedried trees, trim with scissors, and addleft-overs under the canopy for the for-est floor. ◆

    Paula Hopkins is the chair of the SouthPuget Sound Chapter. She and husbandDick Hopkins are working on buildingHopkins Forestry, a forest managementconsulting business. She can be reachedat 253-951-1457 or [email protected]


    South Puget Sound Starts Outreach Project



    Elements of the Murray Museum include a small-scalemodel showing modern forestry, a mannequin dressedin the original clothes of Tom Murray Jr., and the WSSAFbiomass display.

  • Forest Products Forum: Portland,Sept. 17, Portland, OR. Contact: GregLewis, 978-469-6335, [email protected],

    Who Will Own the Forest?9, Sept.17-19, Portland, OR. Contact: Sara Wu,503-488-2130, [email protected],

    PNW Reforestation Council: ForestHerbicides, Sept. 24, Vancouver, WA.Contact: WFCA.

    Forest Resources Association fallmeeting, Oct. 8-10, Coeur d’Alene, ID.Contact: Forest Resources Association,906-282-6752, [email protected],

    Forest Tech: Improving WoodTransport and Logistics, Oct. 9,Portland, OR. Contact: WFCA.

    SAF National Convention, Oct. 23-27,North Charleston, SC. Contact: NationalSAF, 866-897-8720,

    Energy Exports in the Northwest,Oct. 24-25, Seattle, WA. Contact: LawSeminars International, 206-567-4490,[email protected],

    Inland Empire SAF annual meeting,Nov. 15-16, Cheney, WA. Contact: SteveMcConnell, 509-477 2175, [email protected]

    Sixth Annual Western Native PlantConference, Dec. 9-11, Vancouver, WA.Contact: WFCA.

    SAF Leadership Conference, Jan.31-Feb. 1, 2014, The Red Lion, Kelso, WA.Contact: Joe Murray, 360-460-3733, [email protected]

    Oregon SAF annual meeting, April30-May 2, 2014, Seven Feathers CasinoResort, Canyonville, OR. Contact: MarkBuckbee, 541-580-2227, [email protected]

    Washington State SAF annualmeeting, May 7-9, 2014, Pack Forest,Eatonville, WA. Contact: Paula Hopkins,253-951-1457, [email protected]

    Hobe Jones1937-2013

    Hobe Jones passedaway on June 28 at theage of 82. He had a longcareer of 31 years withWilbur-Ellis in thePortland, Ore., office.Hobe grew up inNebraska where he wasan excellent athlete,holding several high school track recordsthat stood for years. He missed qualifyingfor the 1952 US Olympic Team when hefell during a qualifying heat.

    Hobe received his Masters of Science inForest Management from Oregon StateUniversity in 1958 with his thesis on theuse of agricultural chemicals to controlvegetation in forestlands. Hobe was a pio-neer in the development of vegetationmanagement practices to increase forestseedling survival and growth in the PacificNorthwest.

    He began as a sales representativewith the Wilbur-Ellis Company in 1961serving the forestry market in Oregon and

    Washington. In 1985 he became a districtmanager until his retirement in 1993. Hobewas an outstanding sales representative andmanager, as well as a mentor and leader tomany employees.

    Hobe was active in retirement as anexcellent golfer who had seven holes in one,an expert fly fisherman, and a family manwho enjoyed his four children, nine grand-children, and two great-grandchildren. Hewas preceded in death by his wife Dorothy.

    Leslie Yates1924-2013

    Les Yates, 89, passed away February 20.He began his college studies at Whitworth

    University before serving in the ArmySignal Corps toward the end of World WarII, serving in France and Belgium.

    Following an honorable discharge fromthe Army, Les resumed his college studiesat Gonzaga University and eventuallytransferred to Washington State Universitywhere he earned a bachelor’s degree inforestry. Following graduation he movedto Alabama, where he began his 32-yearcareer with the US Forest Service. Hiscareer took him to four states and he wasan active member of the Inland EmpireSociety for many years. He joined SAF in1956. ◆

    We Remember


    Calendar of Events

    Contact InformationWFCA: Western Forestry andConservation Association, 4033 SWCanyon Rd., Portland, OR 97221, 503-226-4562, [email protected],

    Send calendar items to the editor [email protected] by October 7

    for the November/December issue.

  • he Society of American Foresters’North Olympic Chapter hosted

    the 50th Anniversary of ConservationDay at the Clallam Bay site on May 30,2013. This event has been held for 50years benefiting Neah Bay, ClallamBay, and Forks elementary schools giv-ing students and teachers knowledgeof the working forest providing bothcommodity and ecological values.

    Instructors are stationed along aninterpretive trail and present a varietyof talks on all aspects of forest manage-

    ment such as forest products, health,protection, tree identification, fisheries,wildlife, recreation, reforestation, the working forest. Instructors areprofessionals from industry, govern-ment, tribes, and consulting firms.Each instructor covers talking points attheir station in their own area ofexpertise.

    Emphasis is on continued healthand use of forest ecosystems and thepresent and future availability of forestresources to benefit society.

    SAF members participating in theevent include John Standerwick, BrettMcGinley, Joe Murray, Wes Romberg,Gordon Gibbs, and Glen Wiggins, whowas present at both the first and 50thConservation Day celebrations. Specialrecognition goes to Brett for trail andstation preparation; Wes for overallorganization; and Gordon for publicrelations and master of ceremonies. ◆


    North Olympic Chapter ContinuesLegacy of Conservation Day


    og exports from Washington, Oregon, northern California, and Alaskajumped about 28% in the second quarter of 2013 compared to the first

    quarter of this year, totaling 540 million board feet, according to the USForest Service’s Pacific Northwest Research Station. During the same timeperiod, lumber exports increased by 5% to 230 million board feet.

    The total value of logs exported from the west coast in the second quarterof 2013 increased about 34% to $398 million, while the total value of lumberexported from the west coast increased about 12% to $172 million, comparedto the first quarter of 2013.

    “Demand from China is the major reason for the increased log exportswe’re seeing,” said Xiaoping Zhou, a research economist with the station whocompiled the data.

    In the second quarter of 2013, China imported 349 million board feet ofwest coast logs, compared to 243 million board feet earlier in the year. Atwest coast ports, 65% of outgoing logs and 35% of outgoing lumber were des-tined for China.

    Other highlights:• Total US log exports in the first half of 2013 increased by more than 20%

    compared to the same period in 2012, while the value increased by morethan 27%;

    • Total US lumber exports in the first half of 2013 increased by more than6% compared to the same period in 2012, while the value increased about1%;

    • Sixty-six percent of total US log exports were shipped from west coastports during the second quarter of 2013, a 5% increase compared to the sec-ond quarter of 2012;

    • West coast lumber exports during the second quarter of 2013 represent-ed about 27% of the total US lumber export, which is nearly the same shareas in the second quarter of 2012.

    Zhou compiled the statistics using data from the US International TradeCommission and Production, Prices, Employment, and Trade in NorthwestForest Industries, an annual station publication that provides current infor-mation on the region’s lumber and plywood production as well as employ-ment in forest industries. The report is available online at

    China Remains Key Driver ofExport Increases



  • he 2013 SAF National Conventionwill be held at the North Charleston

    Convention Center, South Carolina,where an expected 1,500 forest andnatural resource professionals willgather to examine everything fromnew GIS technologies and remotesensing data to watershed and invasivemanagement.

    Silviculture Matters!

    The event theme is SilvicultureMatters. Join the discussions about therise of plantation and industrialforestry in the south; ecosystem man-agement of federal lands; northernspotted owl western forests protectionplans; recent wildfire and insectattacks decimating western forests;and sophisticated management andrestoration of natural forest ecosys-tems throughout the country.

    More than 300 presentationsavailable

    The event provides exclusive train-ing and professional growth experi-ences for representatives of federal,state and local government as well asprivate and nonprofit companies.Several hundred students from col-leges and universities across theUnited States also will participate aspart of their education. Additionally,attendees can participate in:

    • Forest Technology UsersConference: A pre-convention eventOctober 22-23;

    • Career Fair on Friday, October 25;

    • Forest Service SilvicultureWorkshop;

    • Forest Management Expo withmore than 90 exhibitors with the latesttechnology and resources for profes-sionals;

    • Technical field tours to some ofSouth Carolina’s finest examples ofmanaged forests; and

    • Professional development work-

    shops on leveraging ArcGIS forforestry; leadership techniques forcareer advancement; American TreeFarm System inspecting forester train-ing; and family forest legacy planning.

    Special events include

    • Breakfast with the chief of the USForest Service;

    • Networking and diversity recep-tions;

    • Fellows’ breakfast;

    • Technical field tours; and

    • Much more.

    To register and view the full sched-ule, visit ◆


    SAF National Convention Slated for October 23-27



    Editor’s Note: To keep SAF membersinformed of state society policy activities,Policy Scoreboard is a regular feature in theWestern Forester. The intent is to provide abrief explanation of the policy activity—youare encouraged to follow up with the listedcontact person for detailed information.

    WSSAF Policy Update. TheWSSAF Executive Committee adoptedan updated version of our WorkingForest Position Statement as follows:

    The Washington State Society ofAmerican Foresters (WSSAF) supports“No-Net-Loss” of working forests byencouraging the creation, restoration,protection, and enhancement of work-ing forests in the State of Washington.

    Central to our discussions were theroles of silviculture, commercial tim-ber harvest, and no-cut areas in aworking forest. Silvicultural treatmentsare designed to produce a differentbalance of social, economic, and eco-logical products and values than whatwould occur naturally. Recurrent andperpetual commercial harvest over“most” of a plan area is necessary toprovide economic benefits. No-cutareas are necessary to provide ecologi-cal benefits and services. It is all about

    “balance.” The full position statementis posted on the WSSAF website andwill be distributed for full membershipconsideration this fall. WSSAF mem-bers are encouraged to use it in publicoutreach efforts.

    The WSSAF Executive Committeealso approved our Forestry EducationPosition Statement. This is a jointeffort with Inland Empire SAF. In orderto consider additional comments fromthe University of Washington andInland Empire SAF, a small reviewgroup was created. A central issue dis-cussed was the need for accreditedundergraduate programs at state uni-versities, community colleges, or both.

    WSSAF member Peter Heide attend-ed the July 2 meeting of the Board ofNatural Resources (BNR) meeting. TheBNR approved the re-conveyance of8,400 acres of state forest to WhatcomCounty and a $10 million loan for partof the purchase price of approximately50,000 acres of priva